Friday, July 30, 2010

We were on the road this morning at 8:40 a.m. We had not had our morning coffee yet so we stopped at Rogers Pass and I ran into Glacier Park Lodge for a couple of “to go” cups. When I came out Steve was being entertained by a family of gophers (at least I think that’s what they were).

There was a lot of traffic on the highway today plus a lot of road construction...but it was a lovely drive with a very light high cloud covering. We stopped just outside of Field along the river for lunch—very picturesque.

Well, our GPS got us to the right place...yay! We arrived at Cochrane Lake at about 3:30 p.m. Ken and Charlene own another house (that he is fixing up and selling) just down the street from their place and it has a nice big, long driveway. We managed to get backed in no problem.

Just as we were finished getting all set up, Ken arrived home from work...excellent timing! He took us on a tour of the house that he was fixing up...very unassuming from the outside but huge and very nice inside. Ken does a great job and really has great imagination when it comes to house renovations.

We walked the short distance to their place and were greeted by 3 huge dogs...Little Bear, a German Sheppard; Katie, a rescue dog that looks like she has some Golden retriever in her; and Rocky, who has light blue eyes—very unique and very eerie when you first look at him.

Charlene had just gotten out of the hospital last Monday after 16 days and major Ken not to have mentioned anything to us. But she was looking good and is recovering well.

As the evening progressed, so did the storm clouds that we had been watching. As the wind really started to whip up, we decided we had better go back to the trailer and close the slides. Those were really mean looking clouds out there! After some high wind, rain and some light hail, the storm passed but later that night, watching the late news, we heard that some areas received some major hail (looked like a snow storm). I think we dodged the bullet there. That is one of Steve’s biggest concerns being here in Alberta—all of the hail storms they seem to be having this year.

After a late dinner, we said our goodnights and returned home. It had been a long was time for bed. It’s good to see Ken and Charlene and we’re looking forward to spending the weekend with them.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

We had a very quiet day today. After breakfast, we sat out in the sunshine for a bit...then I supervised Steve as he climbed up on the roof to clean the solar panels. At about noon, I decided to walk up to the office so I packed up my laptop and make the trek up the hill. I checked email, facebook and even managed to have a text conversation with Chris...I love being able to do that! I was frustrated to find that the internet signal was too weak to allow me to download pictures to the blog. Oh well, I at least got the last few days will add the pictures later when we are in an area with better service. Interesting...there is Telus service here but no Rogers...and I am using a Rogers Rocket Stick for my laptop.

After about an hour, I ventured back down the hill...oh, knees definitely do not like going downhill. The odd thing is that it is my “good” knee...the one I had arthroscopic surgery on a number of years back...that is causing me grief. The other knee is the one that had been giving me problems more recently. Hopefully, if I refrain from walking downhill and give it a little TLC, it will be fine.

The rest of the afternoon was spent relaxing in our chairs outside...I was trying to read but I ended up snoozing more than reading. Steve decided to clean the truck windows and ended up cleaning the cab interior as well. He has also been monitoring the battery power for the trailer...which is low this afternoon. Even though we are in the trees, this site gets quite a bit of sunshine but I guess perhaps not as much direct full-on sun needed to keep the batteries charged up. So we are having to watch our power consumption...which means no lights (good thing we have a battery operated Coleman lantern with us), no water pump and of course no TV. Steve filled the blue water jug tonight so we will use it to wash, brush teeth and make mocha with in the morning. Steve went to get our Coleman Coffee Maker out but could not find it...another thing we forgot back home! The list is getting far we forgot the axes, our water shoes and now the propane coffee maker.
We have really enjoyed our stay here but it is time to move on. We will be leaving early tomorrow morning and having a good drive ahead of us. Our destination is Cochrane, Alberta where we will be visiting our friends, Ken and Charlene.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

We were going for a hike today so I put a lunch together to take with us and we headed out just after 9:30 a.m. Our plan was to take the Great Glacier hike which is described as a 3.5 hour, 9.6 km hike with an elevation gain of 320 metres. However, we missed the turnoff for it so continued the short distance to the Rogers Pass Information centre which is at the summit of Rogers Pass. We spoke to one of the parks people about the trail we were planning to hike and she suggested the Balu Pass trail which starts right behind their building. She described it as having wonderful views of the glaciers, mountains and valleys and after the first km of very steep terrain; it levels off to a moderate incline. Okay, we’ll do that one.

She was right about the start...holy cats, it was steep with switch-backs but we persevered and were soon through the tree line where it opened up to a beautiful view of the valley, but I don’t know if I would describe the trail as a moderate incline...this poor body thought it was pretty darn steep still...not as steep as the first km of the hike but “moderate” just doesn’t fit either. We walked down into the valley (the only “down” part of the trail) then up the other side of the mountain crossing streams with either large boulders as a bridge or a wooden boardwalk. The views were incredible!
We were told that there had been a bear sighting so to make lots of noise as you walk. We did not see any bears but lots of marmots were sunning themselves out on the rocks and were very curious. One particular one was not afraid of us at all but was actually approaching us as Steve took pictures. He then carried on up the trail ahead of us as if he was leading the way for us.

It took us just over 3 hours to get to the very end of the trail which was at the top of the mountain. A couple of times we said “we’ll just go a little further” but the reality of it is that we had gone so far, it would be a shame not to go to the end...the problem was, we never knew how much further that was! But after much whining and complaining on my part, we persevered to the very end...gee, at one point, I felt like a mountain goat! In the end, I’m glad we did it. What stunning views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers! I will describe more of the trail with the pictures below.

Down one side of the valley...

And up the other...
And up.......

There was a stairway made of rock must have taken then ages to build...

Okay...we’re up here, sitting on a rock, enjoying the vista and pretty darned proud that we made it...but, guess what starts to creep into your thoughts? We have to walk all the way back!!

But it’s problem. Well, in some respects, downhill is harder. Going up is slow going and you get winded...going down, your legs get so sore...particularly my knees. By the time we were down, I could hardly walk. On the last portion of the steep trail down to the parking lot, my left knee was so sore that I had to walk sideways which seemed to relieve it somewhat. It took us just over 2 hours to get in total we hiked for 5 ½ hours, mind you, we did stop to take pictures along the way and eat lunch. Once back, I checked the description of this trail in the brochure...4 hours, 10 kms with an elevation of 788 metres.

Note to time don’t forget suntan lotion and bug repellent!

Needless to say, once back at our campsite, we relaxed in our recliners, had a gourmet dinner (KD and hot dogs), a shower and were relaxing in bed by about 8:30 watching TV (downloaded programs from the laptop).
Hmmm....after our hike today, I think we will have an RnR day tomorrow. Since wifi service is only available up at the office (oh no, another uphill) I’d like to take the laptop and get these last few days posted on the blog.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

It was 54 frickin degrees in the trailer when I got up this morning...burr! It had been so hot during the day that when the sun went down last night, we opened all the windows and left them open all night. It was another clear morning so we knew it would not be long before things would warm up...once that sun came over the mountain.
After breakfast, we packed up for our move over “to the other side”. We didn’t worry too much about securing things down inside since it was just a short jaunt...just had to make sure things were out of the way to get the sliders in. We made our way over to site 120 in the trees with no problems and got set up. What a beautiful spot...definitely has the “It” factor for us. This part of the campground is just like our provincial campgrounds...lots of trees, with much more space between you and your neighbour. There is one thing about the location of this campground...again, we picked one that is right beside railroad tracks! A very busy railway (with long trains that take 10 minutes to pass!) at that but at least the roar of the river behind us helps!

We had decided to take in the hot pools here today so we gathered our suits and towels (oh...and the shampoo, conditioner, etc to shower afterwards) and headed up there. We had to stop in at the office to get a new parking pass and pay an extra $13.41...the non-serviced sites were cheaper but we had only paid for 3 night before and now we were sure we were staying until Friday, making it 4 nights. The young fellow taking care of me at the counter mentioned that they had just gotten word that morning that there was a fire ban in place. I started laughing and explained to him what Steve had said last night ...”watch, we’ll finally get to a spot where we can have a campfire and there will probably be a fire ban put in place tomorrow!!!” Well, you called that one right, honey! Too funny! The fellow was quite apologetic (of course, it wasn’t his fault) and waived the extra $13.41 that we owed....hey, bonus!
We spent over an hour in the 2 pools they is 104 degrees and the other 86 degrees...hardly refreshing! It was a pretty expensive swim at $8.50 each but you have to experience the hot springs since we were there. There really wasn’t anything special about comparison to the hot springs in Banff. After showering, I met Steve out front sitting in the sun...yes, waiting for me. We were going to have an ice cream cone but after realizing the cost was $4.26 for one scoop, we declined... obviously we didn’t want ice cream that badly.

Well, you’ll never guess what we did that afternoon...we took an afternoon siesta! Yup, we laid back in our recliners and had a snooze! Guess we have time for that now that we are retired! Gotta like it! After our 1 ½ hour siesta, we thought we’d see if we could find the path down to the river that is right behind can’t see it from our site but you can certainly hear it! We had no problem finding the path and we walked along the river’s edge a short distance down to the bridge where the trains cross the river. I wanted to get a picture of the train so Steve walked up to the tracks and put his hand on the rail and jokingly said “the train is a mile away” but after waiting there for a bit, we headed back. No sooner had we gotten back to our campsite, guess what we heard? Wow, you`re good, honey! ! LOL!

Back at our campsite, we sat outside enjoying our was really a nice spot and we are so glad that we switched sites. This is what we really enjoy! I must say, I never thought we’d find a spot like this that we could get our rig into!

After dinner, we went for another walk around the campground. Our “old” neighbours in the hook-up sites had asked Steve if he would mind popping by to take a look at the tire on their truck (yup, you’d better stop in Revelstoke and get new tires). This is a couple visiting from Germany...Otto and Astrid. When they had first arrived at their campsite, Otto had come right over and introduced himself. There are a lot of European tourists travelling through this area. Another very nice family—Paul, Bev and their son, Jack were from the UK currently living in Dubai where he was a military teacher. They had spent some time on a ranch in Canmore, Alberta and then rented a truck and 5th wheel to visit the BC coast. They were on their way back to the ranch and were flying home on the 29th. There was also another fellow from Holland that had stopped to admire the truck...his name was Rene...I think...doesn’t sound very Dutch to me, so maybe I have that wrong...a very nice fellow. It is really interesting talking about the differences between our countries.

I wanted to check my email, so with my ipod in hand, I made the long walk uphill to the office to get the password for the WiFi. The ipod is handy for checking email and generally having internet connection but I can’t do the posts to my blog so I will likely take my laptop up tomorrow.

When I got back to the trailer, Steve was just hooking up the laptop to the TV so we could watch a couple of programs. The mosquitoes and no-seeums were getting bad so he had retreated to the trailer. There was also a fairly brief thunder and lightning storm with a bit of rain....hopefully, it will be nice tomorrow for our hike.

Monday, July 26, 2010

We said our good-byes to Dennis, Suzanne and Dunkin’ just before 8am. They had to get back to was a work day for Dennis, after all! We finished our pack-up and were ready to go by 9am. We said our good-byes to the folks that were out to watch us manoeuvre our rig out of our site and through the park. We had no problems but I do think it helped not having a neighbour to our left.

It was another gorgeous day as we headed back north on Hwy 97, through Kelowna towards Vernon, Sicamous and the TransCanada Hwy. Along the way, between Kelowna and Vernon, there are 2 absolutely beautiful lakes...Wood Lake and Kalamalka Lake. The views from the highway down onto the lakes were stunning...the water was such a pretty shade of greeny-blue.

Once we hit the TransCanada Hwy, we headed east through Revelstoke and Mt. Revelstoke National Park. There is an RV park at Albert Canyon (Canyon Hotsprings) that was our destination in hopes that they would have a site suitable for us. Luckily, they did and since it is half-way between Mt. Revelstoke National Park and Glacier National Park, we thought we would spend the rest of the week here exploring the National Parks. Our plan is to be in Cochrane, Alberta on Friday.

We got set up in site 158, a pull-thru site with power and water hook-ups. Holy Cats it was hot! Once done, we turned the air-conditioner on full force, closed the door and sat outside in what little shade we could find (under the over-hang of the 5th wheel) enjoying a cold beer while the air-conditioner did it’s thing inside. This campground has serviced and non-serviced sites. Of course, the serviced sites are the typical “all lined up” set up....and...WiFi is only up at the office area! That’s going to be a pain having to lug my laptop up there rather than enjoying the internet from the comforts of my own home...oh well, at least there is WiFi here!

The sun finally went down behind a mountain at about 7:20 (Steve and I had a bet on as to what time the sun would be down...I won!) and Steve cooked himself a hotdog while I made a salad for myself.

After dinner, we donned our walking shoes for a walk around the campground. Once the sun had gone behind the mountain, it certainly cooled down a lot and it was a lovely evening. There is one section of the park that has non-serviced sites and it is really nicely treed...just like the provincial campgrounds. There are even a couple of sites large enough (and easy enough to get to in our rig) so we decided to go up to the office and see if we could move tomorrow. We really are self-sufficient, not needing hook-ups, and would really enjoy camping in a site that was more private and treed. We had no problem arranging the switch so we will move in the morning.
By the time we returned to the trailer it was almost 9:30, so we headed inside. We can’t get any channels on the TV so Steve hooked up the laptop to the TV and watched Son’s of Anarchy that we had downloaded. As usual, I was fast asleep seconds after my head hit the pillow.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Another beautiful’s going to be hot again today. It was our turn to cook breakfast for everyone this morning...okay, after this big breakfast; we’re going to be having much lighter fare starting tomorrow.

By the time we got going this morning it was after 11:00 a.m. and we were heading to a couple of wineries. Our first stop was going to be Burrowing Owl Estate Winery. Along the way, we stopped to take a picture of the mud slide that occurred on the ourskirts of Oliver in early June.  It went right across the highway taking out a number of homes and vineyards with it. Absolutely amazing that no one was killed, particularly with the amount of traffic on that highway during the summer.

Burrowing Owl is a gorgeous place set up on the mountain side overlooking the vineyards. They have a guest house with pool, hot tub, a restaurant and of course, wine tasting and store. After tasting 2 white and 2 red, I bought a Pinot Gris and Dennis a Pinot Noir, and went next door to look at the restaurant. We are glad we did because from inside you access the observation tower and we would have totally missed it if we hadn’t decided to be snoopy. Very cool views as well as interesting history of the vineyard and winery...right down to the giant oak vats in the basement.

Our next stop was Tinhorn Creek Winery. They actually had a hostess that greeted you at the door with a glass of wine (ok...a taste of wine) and welcomed you to the property. She gave an introduction to the winery and explained the self-tour that was available. By the way, the wine we were greeted with was fabulous—Steve even said that it was the best wine he had ever had...and that coming from a beer drinker. You were also welcome to bring picnic lunches and sit out on the patio enjoying a glass of wine. After a small walk around, we went to the wine tasting counter where we were greeted by a very nice young lady who explained each wine that was available for tasting. Dennis and I each purchased the wine that was served when we was a special edition called “2 Bench” which refers to the division of the vineyards through the Oliver/Osoyoos region—on one side of the valley, the grapes are mainly used for white wine and the other red wine. This wine was a blend of 3 different types, I believe.

We were back home just before 2pm...and it was very hot out, so we were in our bathing suits in no time, gathering the floating devices and heading to the water. Steve and I tried out Dennis and Suzanne’s kayak (it’s a blow-up kayak and very cool) for a bit but it was just too hot as there was little wind today (quite a change from yesterday!) so we were back after about 15 minutes. We then joined Dennis and Suzanne on floating chairs...awww...lovely! We just floated on the lake, chatting and enjoying the sunshine. We must have been out there for over an hour before deciding that it was time for some shade.

After cleaning up, we decided to have happy hour inside Dennis and Suzanne`s 5th wheel. I know that sounds odd but with temperatures hitting 35 degrees and virtually no breeze, it was just too hot to sit outside when you knew there was a cooler air-conditioned option. So we sat at their table enjoying some nibblies and then brought out the catchphrase game. So much fun!
It was Sunday evening and that is when we usually call Chris and Rob. After a couple of attempts to do a video call with Chris, we finally got through. The video quality wasn’t that great but we had a good conversation with him. After dinner, we spoke to Rob and Angie via Skype. It is so nice being able to keep in touch with them that way. I love being able to see them. Thank goodness for will make our new lifestyle easier for me.

We met Dennis and Suzanne down at the beach a little later to watch the moon come was supposed to be a full moon either tonight or tomorrow night. It was just beautiful as it came up over the mountain. As thirsty mosquitoes started to join us, we decided it was time to retreat back indoors and call it a night. We were continuing our journey tomorrow....

Saturday, July 24, 2010

I was up bright and early this morning, just after 6 a.m. It was just a gorgeous morning. We had a slow start to the day and after breakfast at Dennis and Suzanne’s, we headed out in the car towards Osoyoos. Our first stop was at the Golden Beaver Winery...and my first winery visit and wine tasting...hey it was after noon somewhere. Kathy-Ann who works at the winery and also happens to live here at the RV park, eloquently explained the traits of each wine we tasted. I ended up purchasing a Pinot Blanc and Dennis a Merlot.

After pictures and chatting there for a bit, we continued onto Osoyoos. The area has really changed a lot since we were last there. A lot of the campgrounds have been replaced by condos. We stopped at the infamous Home Hardware...incredible! It has absolutely anything and everything that you could possible’s huge! We made our Visa card smoke again with some odds and ends we needed and returned to the car. Dennis took us on a tour around the town and then we headed back towards Oliver. After stopping at a couple of farm markets, we finally found some fresh corn for dinner. We still had to stop at SuperValu though, for peppers needed for the shish-kabobs for dinner that night.

Once back home, we donned our bathing suits, inflated the floating chairs and headed towards the beach. It was a hot day but windy, making it difficult to paddle out into the lake. But we persevered and enjoyed the water. I had had enough sun and wind by about 4pm and went back to the trailer to prepare our happy hour appetizer. We sat out enjoying happy hour but it was 34 degrees in the shade and when we decided to play a game that Dennis and Suzanne had brought, we went inside to the cooler air conditioned trailer.

This game was an absolute hoot! I was laughing so hard! It’s called Catch Phrase. It’s kind of like charades where your partner has to guess what the words are that you are describing. Too funny...I would highly recommend it.  It had us in stitches!

It was our turn to cook dinner so while Steve was barbequing the kabobs, I prepared the corn inside. Suzanne brought down some nugget potatoes and we all sat out on the picnic table enjoying our usual “fashionably” late dinner.

Afterwards we took our after dinner drink (espresso vodka) down to the beach and sat watching the moon come up...and feeding a friendly duck. Another fabulous day.....

Friday, July 23, 2010

Woke to sunshine this morning...Yay! It's okay to have the occasional cloudy, cooler day but it is summer after all and the season is short enough as it is! Today is pack up day but we weren't in a hurry. We had breakfast and then drove over to pick up the ATV's from Kelowna Yamaha. Once back, we went into pack-up mode...Steve taking care of the stuff outside and me the inside. During the course of the morning, Steve had a number of phone calls with a fellow in Edmonton regarding the backup cameras we are planning to have installed. We plan on arriving in Edmonton August 2 so will spend a few extra days there getting the cameras installed. We still have to look into the tire pressure monitors and the satellite yet. So we are gradually getting everything we need for this adventure of ours.

Dennis and Suzanne arrived just before 2pm and we were off...following them to Tuc el Nuit Lake just outside of Oliver. They have their 5th wheel at Desert Lake RV Resort for the summer and drive down weekends. We arrived just after 3pm and after a bit of manoeuvring, managed to get the 5th wheel into the site...we are just 3 down from Dennis and Suzanne. It`s a beautiful, well maintained park right on the lake...just beautiful! Stay tuned for pictures....

Suzanne and I drove into Oliver to pick up a few groceries, wine and, of course, the luck Lotto Max ticket...hmmm...perhaps you will hear me screaming later once I check the numbers. Once back, we sat outside in our site enjoying the shade (a bit of relief from the 30 degrees)  and, of course, happy hour! We ate a delicious dinner prepared by Suzanne and then sat down at the beach for awhile before calling it a night. Looking forward to tomorrow!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

We woke up to clouds, wind and a bit of rain this morning. A look at the forecast indicates that today was a blip in the normal sunny Okanagan weather with thunder showers expected. But it was just one day with hot sunny days expected back tomorrow.

Steve left at 8:20 to drop the truck off for the morning at the glass place across the street. The windshield was being replaced this morning.

Steve decided to wash the roof of the trailer and eventually continued on to wash the whole thing! I spent most of the day inside, working on getting the blog up to date and ready to publicize. I also made spaghetti sauce to take over to Dennis and Suzanne’s for dinner tonight.

Dennis picked us up at about 4:30 and after a quick stop at the grocery store, we were again at their place enjoying a cocktail on the deck. The sky was starting to break a little, so there was some promise for the weather to clear and we’d be back to sunshine tomorrow. We had another delicious dinner of salad, spaghetti and garlic bread.

After dinner, we decided to go down to the hot tub. Steve needed it after spending the day washing the whole trailer. Another great evening with Dennis and Suzanne.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

This morning we took the ATV’s to the car wash, unloaded them, drove them into the wash bay and power-sprayed them. They needed a cleaning in preparation for their first servicing. After dropping them off at Kelowna Yamaha for their servicing tomorrow, we arrived home just after 1pm. We had a quiet afternoon spending a good portion of it inside our air-conditioned trailer because it was a hot one out there! We received an email from Uncle Gord asking if, by chance, we would be in Edmonton by August 2nd since the family was gathering to celebrate his birthday. If not, then they would arrange another gathering when we were there. Steve responded that we would be there so I thought I had better try reserving a site at the local RV Park, Rainbow Valley. Unfortunately the one spot they had that would be big enough for us was already taken...hmmm...time to start researching some other locations.

Dennis arrived just after 4pm and after a beer here, we headed to their place. When Suzanne got home from work, we all went down to the pool to cool off before heading out to a local pub for “Wings Night”. We enjoyed a healthy dinner of wings (4 different seasonings) and onion rings...yum! We then drove downtown to the Kelowna lakefront to join the hundreds of tourists walking along the parkway.

It was a beautiful evening and just lovely there. We wandered along until we came across the casino...surprise, surprise! Suzanne is notorious for her luck at casinos. I plugged my $20 into a slot machine, played it for a bit before moving on to try some others. I was up about $16 at one point but of course continued plugging away until I was back down to just over $20 when I decided to cash in...but...while waiting and watching Dennis at a slot, I decided to plug my $20 into the slot next to him. The whole $20 was gone in minutes! Oh well, the main thing is that I didn’t bring out more $$.

We said our goodnights at about 10:30...the end to another great day.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I was up early again this morning...just can’t seem to sleep much past 5:30 a.m. these days...just anxious to see what the day brings and enjoy it to the fullest, I guess!! After a trip down to the shower house (can hardly wait for our shower to be fixed so I can enjoy a shower back in our own home), we enjoyed freshly baked muffins courtesy of Suzanne...they were sooooo good...thanks, Suzanne!

The RV Mobile Service fellow, Daniel, arrived around 9:30 and after confirming that the water leak was coming from the shower stall, he fixed it in no time...Yay, I can shower in my own home tomorrow morning! My morning, as well as part of the afternoon, was spent making trips back and forth to the laundry...after 6 loads I had everything clean, right down to the duvet cover and pillow shams! Steve made a quick run across the street to a glass place to see if they would be able to replace the windshield on our truck. Yeah...not even 30 kms out of Princeton and we had a rock chip which of course, couldn’t have stayed as just a chip but started the whole windshield needed to be replaced. That is set for Thursday morning and the quads are also going into Kelowna Yamaha for their first servicing that day as well.

After lunch, Steve decided to tackle washing the truck and I brought out the was definitely cleaning day today! Tomorrow we will take the ATV’s to the car wash...bring them out and give them a good cleaning in preparation for their servicing.

Dennis picked us up at 4:00 p.m. We dropped Steve off to get a haircut and after a few errands we were back just as he was finished. We spent another lovely evening at Dennis and Suzanne’s place enjoying a dip in the pool and the great views from their deck. After a yummy dinner of BBQ’d steak, chicken and Caesar salad, they drove us home...via a scenic route through Westbank.

Monday, July 19, 2010

I woke up just before 6am to the distant sound of warning beep this morning...was that coming from our trailer or somewhere outside? wasn’t stopping...better get up and investigate. Sure enough it was our fridge giving off the warning signal that it was out of propane. Oh well, it won’t hurt if it is off for an hour or so until Steve gets up.

We had breakfast, got the trailer all packed up for travelling and after hugs and handshakes, we headed out at about 11:00 a.m. Rather than take Hwy 5a north and then the Okanagan Connector, we decided to carryon east on Hwy 3 to Keremeos then north to Penticton and Westbank. It was a beautiful drive and we arrived at the Walmart parking lot just before 1:30 and called my brother Dennis. He came prepared with a list of 3 local area RV parks that we might try so I called Okanagan RV park, they had room so we headed there. It has absolutely no “it” factor but we really just need some place to where we could get everything cleaned up and besides we would be spending any leisure time with Dennis and Suzanne. Registration at this park is very interesting...all I had to do was sign a guest and where we are from. Mary, the owner is a very nice lady who personally helped us get backed into the site.

After we got the basics set up, we went to Dennis and Suzanne's place, got our bathing suits on and armed with a glass of wine (beer for Dennis and Steve), the 4 of us headed down to the pool to cool off. Dennis and Suzanne have an absolutely gorgeous condo overlooking Okanagan Lake...just stunning views! After a dip in the hot tub, we went back up to their condo and sat out on the deck. Dennis brought out the telescope so we could get closer views of the activities on the lake and the surrounding area. We ordered Chinese food for was delicious...mind you I hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast and after a couple of glasses of wine, well...let’s just say I was absolutely starving!

At about 9:00, Dennis drove us home. They both had to work tomorrow and we still had to unpack the inside of the trailer and get organized before heading to bed. It was very hot inside so we got the air conditioner going but it was still pretty hot trying to sleep.  It did eventually cool down though. We will definitely keep the air on during the day while takes a while to get things cooled down only having one conditioner for the trailer. We may have to get another one for the bedroom area...especially when we are down south this winter.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Lots of people would be heading out today but we were staying until Monday to avoid the weekend rush. It was our usual slow start to the day...I was up well before Steve enjoying my morning coffee and updating our journal. I wanted to do an internet search of Kelowna area RV parks to see if I could find us a spot for Monday to Thursday. I figured it might be difficult during high season so we might end up in the Walmart parking lot. One place I called was Quail’s Gate Farm—it seems a lot of orchards and farms are putting RV lots in on their property—it was $55/night but they did have room so I (rather hastily) booked it but after getting the reservation confirmation, I cancelled it because they did not have showers (and we still had to get ours fixed in the trailer) and apparently this was their inaugural year and the pictures looked rather barren. I will try more searches later to see what I can find but right now we were going to go for another ride.

We left at about 11am heading the other direction on the KVR towards Coalmont and Turlameen. Gary and his son, Brian joined us. Larry and Judy had gone that way and said what an awesome ride it was with fabulous views along the river. They were right, it was a gorgeous ride. The only part that was difficult (and illegal) was that you had to ride on the outskirts of town and over the main highway bridge to get over the river. As I had mentioned earlier, it is part of the Trans Canada Trail and there are signs saying no ATV’s allowed which is unfortunate because snowmobiles are allowed in the winter...that hardly seems fair. Having said that, there were many ATV’s using the trail...apparently we were not the only ones ignoring the signs.

We had a slow leisurely ride, stopping often to take pictures. We ventured off the trail into Coalmont, parked our ATV’s and went into the Coalmont Saloon for a beer—that was very cool!

I have learned to ensure I take money with me on these rides! It was quite hilarious because just as we got parked, a RCMP truck drove right past us...he obviously wasn’t concerned that we had driven into town. After our beer and chips, we carried onto Turlameen and Otter Lake. Apparently it is a popular vacation spot for lower mainland people—there are lots of cabins on the lake. Gary was telling us that property is expensive because of its proximity being an easy drive to a vacation spot...he was even saying that there are some “mansion type” log cabins with helipads...some people have too much money! There is also a provincial park/campground on the lake. It looked like a beautiful spot.

That was our turn-around point, so after stopping in Turlameen for ice cream (apparently you can’t go to Turlameen without stopping for ice cream) we headed back, arriving just before 4pm. We were hot, dirty and dusty! After a cold beer, Steve loaded the quads into the truck while I continued my internet search for our next camping spot. I gave up and decided to go for a shower...I had hot water this time, yay!

By this time it was after 8pm so Steve just did up some hot dogs on the BBQ and they we joined the other next door for a drink before heading to bed. dogs, chips, beer....what happened to our healthy eating and exercise schedule we had for the first couple of weeks??? Oh well....we’ll get back on track later....