Archive for Vernon

Vernon and Drive to Peachland, British Columbia

July 28, 2008 

 

I’m in Peachland. I was going to spend the nite in Kelowna, which is a city of around 100,000 people.  As I mentioned last week, the highways here go right thru towns…they don’t bypass around them…and I drove mile upon mile of businesses, and just a quick look towards the city center didn’t inspire me.

 

The woman at bfast in Golden suggested I travel to Peachland, which is about 30 minutes out of my way, and also to Summerland, which is around 30 minutes further out of my way.

 

Going thru Kelowna, I was hoping I would like either Peachland or Summerland…and be able to find a play to stay.

 

Got to Peachland and fell in love.  I was going to cycle along Okanagan Lake last nite, but just enjoyed the view and breeze.  I also started doing research on Vancouver…which I will spend the nite tonite.

 

If anyone has any suggestions at all…even obvious ones…please pass them my way.  I plan to be there for at least 5 days…and will leisurely explore the town, mountains and various neighborhoods.

 

After Vancouver and Victoria, I will check out the state of Washington [then Oregon], so again, if anyone has any suggestions…pass them on.

 

On to yesterday…

 

Yesterday was relatively low key. Hung out at the cool coffee shop.  Went back to Okanagan Lake [yes…same lake…it’s huge].  The water temp wasn’t COLD, but wasn’t warm either.  I could see that people would swim in it [not me..too cold], and there were lots of people in the water.  I had no idea that blow up rafts/toys/things little ones can ride on were so popular at the beach.

 

I then went to hike up to Juniper Bay [Rattlesnake Point]. On my way I was planning…bring bear spray, where hiking shoes and thick socks…  when I got there, the parking lot was full of families and lots of teenagers.  Very popular spot.  And lots of people walking the 20 minutes paved path/trail to the point/beach.  I figured I didn’t need any of my safety gear.  There was a sign “We Live Here Too” re rattlesnakes.  This lake is called Kalamalka Lake [lake of many colors].  This lake was prettier than Okanagan, and it did have various colors of blue.  Really pretty.

There was a shirtless hippie guy carrying around a tray selling pina colada’s and strawberry daiquiris.

 

On my way back to my car, I walked by 3 boys around 10 years old.  2 had no shoes on, and one did.  One of the no shoes boys says to shoe boy: you need to take your shoes off and walk on the pavement…it will burn your feet up!!  [Somehow, this must be fun to a 10 yo.]  Shoe boy replies: no way…there are rattlesnakes here!

 

I thought Kalamalka’s water was cold, but there were tons of people in the water.

 

I had another wow scenery moment just south of Vernon.  Tree covered mountains to the lake in the valley.  The entire 1 hours drive to Kelowna was really pretty. 

 

Lots of wineries here.  Lots of fruit stands – mostly cherries, peaches, apricots.

Interesting landscape – the mountains on one side of the lake are baby mountains covered with green trees, the lake, and the baby mountains on the other side of the lake are brown/arid.  The great divide!

 

As you drive into a town, there are signs that tell you the local radio station.

 

Today I plan to hang out and cycle around the lake here.  Then check out Summerland.  Then, I head to Vancouver, which is a 4.5 hour drive.  I plan on taking my time and getting in later tonite.

 

The innkeepers are Russian.  I know 2 Russian words, besides the ones we all know. 

 

One I can get into conversation, the other one is difficult.

 

Spa see ba = thank you.  Except, I think she was telling me it means I wish you good luck.

 

I always ask how to say hello, but it is just too many syllables.

 

Ma trush ka = as in matrushka dolls – those nesting dolls.

 

Oh…and I think I wrote this a while back, I also know:
EEdee!!   EEdee!!   EEdee!!   When the little gypsy kids have you swarmed and they are trying to snake their little hands into your pockets and purse.  You say this with gusto while doing that “move away” motion with your hands.  I have no idea what it means, but it seems to work.

 

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Lake Mara and Vernon, British Columbia

 July 28, 2008

Last nite when I first got into Vernon, I was asking a hot 28 yo the best way to get to Okanagan Lake and Kalamalka Lake.  I know I didn’t need to tell you he was hot, since, after all…I’m in Vernon.

Anyways, he tells me in minute detail how to drive to each lake.  Every turn, every curve.  Then he proceeds to tell me in detail which beach he suggests at each lake, and which runner up beach. Then he makes suggestions for food, again, in detail for both lakes.

He highly suggests hiking at Kalamalka out to Juniper Bay which is at a point, and there is also a beach nearby…and of course how to get there in detail. 

His gfriend walks up, and he tells her:

Him: I’m sending her to Rattlesnake Point!
Me: Ahhh…is there something you forgot to tell me?
Him: Oh…ya…watch out for rattlesnakes. 
Me: Jokingly, I say: does my bear spray work on rattlesnakes?
Him: [he doesn’t get the joke] no, but if you’ve got bear spray, bring it.
Me: I need bear spray?
Him: You’re in BC…you ALWAYS need bear spray. 
Me: And what about the snakes?
Him: You’ll be ok if you stay on the path.  They don’t want anything to do with you.  I’ve lived here 8 years and I’ve only seen 4 rattlesnakes – and 2 were on the same day.

So, in all the minute details he told me, he forgets to mention rattlesnakes on the trail?  Goodness.

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Glacier National Park and Vernon, British Columbia

 

July 28,2009

I am in Vernon, BC. 

I had a very visually appealing day yesterday.  Bottom line:

Vernon, BC is the city with the most attractive outdoorsy looking people.

The drive on Transcontinental Highway 1 from Golden, thru Glacier National Park, thru Revelstoke to where I went south on 97A [Sicamous], was better than driving NORTH to Jasper.  Spectacular.

Re Vernon, Canada Man has been spot on re his suggestions.  There is a more efficient driving route to Vancouver that would take me thru Kamloops, which he doesn’t care for.  Instead, he has sent me south on another route, and told me to stop in Vernon.  I asked a woman at bfast yesterday, whom I really liked, what she thought of Vernon/Kamloops, and she too didn’t like Kamloops, and really liked Vernon.  She told me that I HAD to go to a certain coffee shop, and she didn’t even know I dug coffee shops.

So I booked a room, sight unseen in this town.  I’m jumping ahead, but basically there are very attractive people sitting in and outside the coffee shop, I heard acoustic music being played in a Mexican restaurant across the street, went over and it was packed full of [what I consider] incredibly attractive people.  Good looking couples out walking their dog along the lake.  Just everywhere. I have no idea how many live here vs people on holiday, or why they have settled here, but they are here.

This morning has just flown by, so I will have to make this quick.

Glacier National Park is beautiful.  There are a lot of what I call tree covered baby mountains, which look like “humps”…valleys between these, and then the taller barren mountains in the back/distance.  So, you see one or two tree covered humps, and then the bigger mountain in back.

As I drove further thru the park, it rained a lot, so there was cloud cover and couldn’t see the tops of some mountains.  It was foggy, cloudy, misty.  Some mountains with lots of snow/glaciers in the distance, VERY green, lots of waterfalls.  It rains and snows A LOT here, and so it really looks like a rainforest. 

Later I read that this is the only place in the world where a temperate rain forest exists this far from an ocean coast line.

I hiked thru the Giant Cedar Trail, the Hemlock Grove Trail, and against my better judgment, the Skunk Cabbage Trail [that goodness it blooms in the spring].

They have a lot of tunnels here, but they don’t go thru a mountain…they were added on as an extension of the mountain, and has trees/vegetation growing on top.  I believe they started to do this to protect the roads from avalanches.

Revelstoke is a cute little town, with the visitor center people really helpful.  They even sold me a stamp to the US [$1].  Just on the east side of Revelstoke, the river/lake water is back to a regular color blue again.

The weather yesterday was:
Dark, cloudy, rainy and 62’
Sunny, rainy and 68’
Sunny and 80’

The woman at bfast mentioned that the Vernon area [and south] is desert.  I was thinking of this when I was driving thru what looks like a rainforest, knowing that Vernon is about 2 hours away.  And sure enough, I turn south on 97A, [and see beautiful Lake Mara], the landscape becomes baby mountains and farmland.  The more south I drive, the more arid it is.  In the hour drive south, I reach Vernon, and it’s half “green”. Along the way, there are fruit stands everywhere.  None of these farms have their own silos.

Vernon is known for the amount of snow it receives and apparently is “heaven” for cross country skiers.  It’s bound by 3 lakes.

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