Gambier Islanders James Spouler and Lara Kehler, back in 2007 decided the time was right to pursue their dream of purchasing a piece of land they could call their own.
What were you guys looking for?
We originally wanted something wild. Close enough to civilization to make it easy to get there and bring supplies, but far enough away to be able to forget that the rest of the world exists. We are both designers and dreamers and have wanted to build a house or cabin of our own design, and we wanted to find the right place to do it one day.
What drew you to Gambier?
We started actually by looking at Bowen Island for a lot to build on, or a home to buy that suited our needs/wants, but the prices were way outside of what we could reasonably afford. So we tried looking elsewhere, and we discovered the listings for the first phase development of Fircom on Gambier.
When did you purchase?
We tried to buy a piece in phase #1 of the Fircom development, but we were too late. There was a waiting list of potential buyers and we were so far back that by the time our name came up to choose a property, all the ones that drew us in were already taken. So when the second phase of development came round, we were closer to the front of the line. This was great, because we got the lot that we wanted. We selected our piece in the fall of 2007, and closed the deal in March of ‘08.
What is your favourite feature of your property?
The large cliffy bluff out front that leads to a full view of the water and Bowen Island, with ferries cruising by on their way to and from Langdale.
What’s the most challenging aspect of life on Gambier?
It can be expensive to get there and back, plus you need a car or a truck on the island to get around. If you only get over a few times a year, as was the case for us this past year, the neglect sure adds up on your vehicles. On the island you can’t just drive down to the Lordco to pick up a part, so you can’t finish the repair job until next time you come to the island. Still, it’s all worth it once everything is back in order, and the calmness that is being there when everything is working can’t be matched.
Get on the 4pm Friday afternoon boat, make landfall 20 minutes later, get the truck, drive up to the property and have a drink! Then have some good bbq, and usually either work on a project or two that needs doing or start something we’ve been thinking about for a while, like working on the lawn or building a stone fire pit using the big rocks lying around the property.
We’d love to build a house fastened directly to the rock bluff and put in a robust vegetable garden that would reduce the amount of food we would need to bring over. The goal is to create something that would allow us to live there comfortably for 5 months out of the summer and maybe even some of the winter months.