The Roverlanders, British Columbia's Land Rover club, celebrated 75 years of Land Rover on September 2nd at their annual Founders Day event. Held at the Chilliwack Heritage Park in Chilliwack, BC, the event featured 73 Land Rovers that covered almost the entire breadth of the history of the brand.
Founders Day is a display-focused event, with Land Rovers lined up in the show barn at the Heritage Park. This year, the displays focused on camping setups, and everyone had their kit fully assembled in the show zone. Everything was on display from simple back-of-truck sleeping setups, to elaborate roof top tents and awnings. Due to Canada's longer history of Defender imports (they have a 15-year rule instead of the American 25-year rule, so imported Defenders tend to be more common), there was a large number of later model Td5 Defender 110s with camping setups. With BC being such an outdoor playground, they're also used properly -- it's easy to head out camping for the weekend when there's so much opportunity on your doorstep, and trucks are built to suit.
The models were the full spread of Land Rovers, from 1951 Series I models to a 2023 Defender 130. Defenders and Discoverys (especially LR3/4) were the main stars of the show. There was also a 101 Forward Control, an LR2, a lovely slow-restoration P38 Range Rover, and some nice Range Rover Classics. On the Series front, there were some great examples, including four Series I -- one of which has been in the same family since 1965.
A showstopper was Colin Balme's 1960 Series II 109 pickup, which was cleaned up from its usual heavy use on his farm on Vancouver Island, complete with a vintage BC Ferries sticker on the back.
The event featured a People's Choice Award, and filling it out meant getting a really good overview of the trucks and owners. The Roverlanders club extensively explores British Columbia with a robust group trail run program, and a wall of photos at the event showed off their adventures from recent years. Everyone came from the event with a special 75th-anniversary badge, with more commemorative items for sale at the merch table.
All in all, it was a fun day out, and a great way to see some unique Land Rovers from across BC and Washington State. If you live in British Columbia or northern Washington, the club is absolutely worth getting involved in. (Check out their website here.) They have something on the calendar for every Land Rover owner to get their truck a bit dirty and explore Beautiful British Columbia.
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