I always enjoy Greg Nesteroff’s columns and features in the Nelson Star. The recent one about the name Comaplix was of particularly interest. It did not, however, address the pronunciation of the name, which I have heard a number of local people struggle with.
My father, Norman Brewster and two other members of the Alpine Club of Canada made an expedition into the Battle Range in the summer of 1947. At the time this area was still a blank spot on anybody’s map. Having failed to reach the area from the north the previous year, they made their way northward from Beaton via the Incomaplix River and Kellie Creek, where they climbed and named a number of prominent peaks, such as Mts. Grendel, Beowolf, Illusion, and Billy Whiskers Glacier.
In researching possible routes into the area my father had consulted with a number of local residents including two trappers who had penetrated as far as anybody. In speaking about these experiences my father always pronounced the name Incomaplix (which at the time was more commonly spelled Incomappleux) as “In-coma-ploo” with the accent on the second syllable.
Let’s try to keep the old pronunciation as well as the old name, which has such interesting historical links to the native people of the area and the earliest explorers.