fence
Three sisters meet Aug. 19 from opposite sides of the U.S.-Canada border north of Lynden. A new four-cable fence has been installed at places where British Columbia’s Zero Avenue and Whatcom County’s Boundary Road are side by side. (Calvin Bratt/Lynden Tribune)

It’s north of Lynden where Boundary Road and 0 Avenue lie side-by-side

WHATCOM ­— Cable fence has been put up on the American side of the international border north of Lynden where until now mostly ditch has been the separation between the two countries.

The new fence is along Boundary Road, opposite Canada’s Zero Avenue, between Bender and Northwood roads on the U.S. side. There was no sign of preparation to do the same between Guide Meridian and Benson roads.
 
“It just showed up this week,” said Laura Rowse, of British Columbia, visiting her mother, Sally Rowse, of Lynden, at the border near Northwood on Wednesday, Aug. 19. “We were here a couple of weeks ago and it wasn’t here.”
 
The installation of metal posts each carrying four strands of cable had almost been completed the mile and a half to Bender Road, going westward. Trucks and equipment of Petersen Bros. Inc., a general contractor out of Sumner, Washington, were on site during an afternoon break from work activity.
 
The posts are anchored into concrete piers about 30 inches deep. 
 
During COVID-19’s shutdown of the U.S.-Canada border to non-essential travel since March, it has become common to see meet-ups of family or friends from either side at the border. They can sit and talk to each other at convenient places along the side-by-side roadways — but with no physical crossing, with cameras of U.S. Customs & Border Protection eyeing in from pole tops.
 
The visiting was happening even as the new fence was taking shape on Wednesday. The Rowses moved down Boundary a bit to be away from the “racket” of the installation crew. 
 
Closer to Assink Road, a pair of sisters from Abbotsford and Chilliwack, B.C., were meeting with  their one sister from Lynden, who wanted to remain anonymous. 
 
“It just appeared,” one sister said of the fence. “I didn’t hear anything about it.”
 
Nor did news media. On either side of the time the Tribune made contact with the three sisters at Bradner Road, a CBC News crew and a Global News van came by too in curiosity about the fence.
 
“Trump’s wall,” one of the sisters joked.