It was snowing so we spent the night there. My China map and cities objective now was Lake Karakol, the blue lake created by the thick glaciers melting off Mustagh China map and cities Ata. I wanted to follow in the wake of Sven Hedin, who had paddled across it surveying the area in 1894. I hoped to fare better, however, as he had nearly drowned. Before dawn we set off for the lakeshore, and Peter helped me to inflate my canoe but said it looked unstable and went off for a stroll. The ice in the shallows cracked easily as I jabbed my paddle into it.
It must have been terrifying for the children as William and Amanda rushed to board-up the windows against the freezing onslaught of snow. In the midst of all this lay Mary Pemble. What horror must have been going through her confused mind? Drugs and pain mingled with the sound of frightened children, shattering glass and the sudden, hard bite of cold. It must have seemed a living nightmare. Did she know what was happening or think she was in hell?
In time, the strength of the storm subsided, the winds calmed, and the life of Grandma Pemble was swept away.
After the storm travel was impossible for several days. The lighthouse was completely inaccessible. As a temporary measure, William Blanchard placed his mother-in-law in a section of the home where it was cold to preserve her remains. As Marilyn tells us, the area Mary was taken now contains the lighthouse and coast guard museum.