Walhachin The turn of the century in British Columbia was a time of economic prosperity. The optimism associated with this prosperity enabled land speculators to attract upper-class Englishmen to purchase land and settle at Walhachin. The British Columbia Development Corp developed a 2000 ha benchland property along the S Thompson R, W of Kamloops, in 1908-09 and built a planned community surrounded by orchards. However, Walhachin as a viable orchard-based settlement was destined not to succeed. The soil was inadequate, the climate harsh, the extensive gravity irrigation system inappropriate, and the settlers inexperienced and lacking the necessary commitment.
Within weeks of the outbreak of WWI, Walhachin was credited with having the highest enlistment rate per capita of any Canadian community. The prospect of returning to their familiar aristocratic roots was more attractive to the settlers than enduring the deprivations of remaining on Canada's western frontier. At war's end, only a few returned. Today, only the ghosts of abandoned irrigation flumes, relic homes and the skeletal remains of fruit trees remain of the romantic western adventure.