WATCH: Nature centre damaged by debris torrent

The cleanup started Tuesday at the Kingfisher Community Salmon Hatchery and Interpretive Centre after it was hard hit by Friday’s massive debris slide east of Enderby.

A wall of water about a metre high tore through the facility near the banks of Cooke Creek.

It left the inside of the centre a soggy mess of scattered and broken items.

Outside, much of the walking trail system has been washed away or buried under gravel.

And with the water intake system destroyed, 60,000 Chinook salmon fry had to be released into the Shuswap river a month earlier than planned.

The centre’s kekuli, a replica of an Aboriginal winter dwelling, is full of mud but not otherwise damaged.

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Society spokesperson, Doug Clark, estimates the cleanup and repairs will total $250,000.

Clark says insurance likely won’t cover the costs, but is hoping for public donations and government grants.

“It’s pretty devastating for us. We worked hard the last 30 years to get to where we were but we’ll recover.”

Clark says the number of phone calls he’s getting from people volunteering to help out any way they can is “just awesome”.

About 3500 school children visit the Kingfisher facility every year.

The spring programs have been postponed until temporary nature classrooms are set up at a nearby forestry campsite.

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