In the end, one of the six thrones hidden around the world in the Game of Thrones #ForTheThrone contest was found just outside Tumbler Ridge, and perhaps more amazingly, by a couple who have never watched Game of Thrones.
“We will 100% start tonight,” laughs Birgit Sharman, who found the throne with her husband Kevin yesterday.
“We obviously know about it, it’s a worldwide phenomenon, our daughter and son-in-law that live in the States, they’re huge fans, and we’ve actually been to a couple places like in Iceland and Northern Ireland where some of the scenes have been filmed.”
The two retirees are known outdoors people, and go skiing and snowshoeing regularly. They had received a tip the throne was near Tumbler Ridge.
“There were some clues that the throne might be in Alberta or BC somewhere by a frozen, because a clue that was released was a 360 degree photo of the throne in front of this frozen wall of ice, and some people speculated that it might be in Tumbler Ridge,” says Birgit.
They were sent a link of the 360 degree photo of the frozen waterfall which the throne sat in front of, and they immediately recognized it as at Babcock Creek.
“We were getting our ski boots on, and getting ready to head out the door because we knew exactly where it was, and we looked online to see what this was, and realized this is a huge deal, so right away within 10 minutes we were driving out, and it’s about a 20 minute drive south of town,” she explains.
“The problem was we had actually been trying to ski on the creeks a few days ago and we had a huge warm spell in the last week, and so the creeks have lots of water running on them, so we didn’t know if we’d actually be able to ski all the way up, but I said I’m prepared to ski and wade through the creek. We had a complete change of clothes ready in the car in case we got soaking wet, but darnit we were going to try and get there.”
When they pulled in the parking lot for a further 3.5 km trek, they noticed other vehicles — they had been beat, or so they thought.
The throne was actually right there in the pullout.
“We thought that’s really weird, so we got out of the car and this guy came out of a trailer and he looked at us quite sternly — we actually knew this guy — and he asked, ‘Why are you here?’ It’s all part of the scene and my husband points to the throne and he said, ‘I’m here to sit in the throne.’”
Sure enough, they had answered correctly, and were crowned as the first people to find the throne. (It was moved due to melting ice on the creek).
It’s been a great experience for the two who love Tumbler Ridge.
“It’s just bringing recognition to the area, and it’s just so cool it’s Tumbler Ridge,” says Birgit.
The two had retired three years ago, with Kevin having come to Tumbler Ridge to work as a geologist in 1984 at a coal mine, and Birgit, a mining engineer, having met him at that same mine. They wouldn’t be anywhere else.
“We both love doing things in the outdoors, so we have happily stayed in Tumbler Ridge and every day we wake up it’s where should we ski today, where should we snowshoe, where should we go for a hike or a bike ride or whatever,” she says.
The throne will be there until Monday, so if you want to get a photo, get one by the end of the weekend. As Birgit explains, to get to it, “drive south of Tumbler Ridge on Hwy 52 for 20 km, which is 1 km past the turnoff to the Peace River Coal Mine on the Core Lodge Rd. There's a pullout on the right side. The throne is there, beside Babcock Creek.”