Well, time to check out of the Holiday Park Resort and make our way back home. We were planning a visit with our son,Michael, but knew he would be working all day so we decided to take the scenic route from Kelowna to Revelstoke where we would check into a hotel for the next two nights. It was another perfect day in terms of weather so we were looking forward to the leisurely drive.
Our route took us to the north end of the Okanagan Lake at Coldstream and Vernon. We stopped for a last look at the lake and to snap a few photos of the Coldstream valley and then headed east toward the Kootenays over the Monashee Pass. The road was never straight for long and around each bend was more beauty! We passed lovely meadows, rivers, waterfalls, golf courses…and the mountains got bigger and higher. Orchards gave way to farmland, primarily stock farms but some grains. A small dairy farm caught our eye at Cherryville when we noticed they sold fresh cheese. A chunk of chilli pepper Gouda was soon added to our cooler to supplement our picnic lunch!
At the summit of the Monashee Pass it was strange seeing snow after our week of hot sunny days but spring was emerging all around us…we could feel it, smell it and see it!
We soon came to a delightful little cable ferry that ran between Needles and Fauquier. The crossing gave us about 10 minutes of amazing scenery as we crossed Arrow Lake and then we were heading north again towards the little town of Nakusp. Along this short span of highway we stopped for a stroll along the beach of Arrow Lake, the sand warm between our toes and the lake like glass. This would be a perfect place to camp someday.
Back on the road and one more ferry…this one from Galena Bay to Shelter Bay. Incidentally, just a few kilometers from Galena Bay is a little old town called Trout Creek which is worth visiting just to see the old gravity gas pump that is still in operation. We didn’t go there this time but saw it on a previous visit to the area.
We arrived at Revelstoke in the late afternoon. This is a city of young, active singles and families. Its history dates back to the gold rush days when it was a major transportation and supply center for the miners. It was eventually ravaged by fire and rebuilt in later years when the railway came through. It became a main transportation hub with steamboats coming north up the Arrow Lakes to meet the trains at Revelstoke.
Because there is an abundance of snow in the winter, skiing has always been a reason to go there and the summertime offers amazing trails for hiking and cycling through the mountain areas. We enjoyed a 7km hike on Mount Revelstoke…enough to warrant a visit to one of the great pubs afterwards!
We met up with Michael when he was done work…he prepared a very tasty barbeque for us and a few friends and then off to the Revelstoke Performing Arts Centre to be entertained by one of my favorite musicians, Harry Manx.
The next morning after breakfast we were on the road again…heading home. West along the TransCanada through the Rogers Pass and the Kickinghorse Pass…majestic mountains surrounding us all the way to Banff. We stopped there for a hike to Johnson’s Canyon. We’ve done this hike many times but it never gets old. Love it!
Then as the mountains gave way to foothills and the foothills gave way to prairie, we marvelled at the change in scenery in such a short distance. We are so blessed to live in a country with so much diversity within a few hours drive. It felt good to be home!