Thursday, July 10, 2008

Osoyoos: The Journey (Part 3)

Are we nearly there yet?

Yes, this is the final part...

The long and winding road... Getting drier and drier as we approach the Okanagan Valley

This is orchard country! The Okanagan produces amazing fruit. We gorged ourselves on cherries and also picked up some peaches and nectarines. There are some great vineyards here too. Yep - Canadian wine! BC produces some amazing wines (and some bad ones) but barely exports any, which is lucky for us but harsh on the rest of you. The biggest wineries are Jackson Triggs and Mission Hill. I didn't visit any wineries on this trip, but one of our fellow campers did, and the local liquor stores sell lots of the local stuff, so I did get to try various bottles. Yum, steak, asparagus and red wine was my favourite camping dinner.


Arid sagebrush country. Getting hot!


Looking down on the town of Osoyoos and the warmest lake in Canada


Our own little oasis, complete with floating living room. This view from our campsite is to the South, looking towards the US border (the flags are visible in real life if you squint a bit, but I can't pick them out on the photo).

If you keep going East, personal experience from previous road and rail trips tells me that it's mountains all the way to Calgary, then grass all the way to Western Ontario, lakes, forests and rocks all the way to the Toronto suburbs, and farmland all the way to Montreal. There's a gap in my knowledge between Montreal and Nova Scotia, which are both fabulous. Future plans include Newfoundland, the Yukon, and I really want to go to the extreme far North, although I'm having trouble finding friends who share my attraction to the cold places on the planet. Mexico schmexico, let's go to Nunavut!

Having said that, BC is 5 times the size of the UK, in a country that has half of the UK's population. So we might just focus on exploring our own province a bit more first!

15 comments:

  1. Been to Yukon (pics on FB). I have got one word for you: SUV (hmm, maybe it's three words-- whatever).
    Yes, that is the one case when you actually need it.

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  2. Amazing! I did not know there was such an ecosystem in Canada!

    Thanks for the pcitures.

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  3. Steak, asparagus, and red wine is one of my favorite meals... period. No camping required :-)

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  4. Okham, that's what I heard... there go Mr E Man's plans for a road trip in his Nissan Maxima!

    Stepwise, it's actually the only desert in Canada. There are moves afoot to create a National Park to protect it better, but there's some local opposition (orchard owners and Native bands, based on the signs we saw by the highway).

    Amanda, me too - but it's somehow better when camping! We usually go kayak camping, which allows us to make better meals than when carrying everything in backpacks, but is still nowhere near as luxurious as car camping. Food post coming up after our next trip probably!

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  5. Okham, that's what I heard... there go Mr E Man's plans for a road trip in his Nissan Maxima!

    Well, if he does not mind it ending like my Honda Accord (new windshield, scratches all over, new tires etc.)...

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  6. 5 years ago that would have been a deal breaker. Now, I'm not quite so sure!

    Mr E Man acquired the current car not long before he acquired me, and after about 3 months I opened the door into a skip, denting it slightly (the door, not the skip). I actually thought he was going to dump me. But this winter, a friend dropped his skis onto the side door, scratching it up nicely, and Mr E Man just shrugged. His protectiveness of his first ever nice car is wearing off!

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  7. Quite a journey! Isn't it baffling how long one can drive and how many different climates one can see and still be in the same country? Glad you had such a fun road trip!

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  8. Mr E Man acquired the current car not long before he acquired me, and after about 3 months I opened the door into a skip, denting it slightly (the door, not the skip). I actually thought he was going to dump me.

    Women....
    How could you possibly think that anyone would "dump" an incredible lady like you, just for a dent in the door of a Nissan Maxima... give me a break... I mean, if we were talking a Volkswagen Golf, well, there it would be different, but a Nissan Maxima... come on....

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  9. ScienceGirl, yes, my sense of scale has changed a lot since I moved here! Now, when I go home, I smile to myself when people refer to a 4 hour drive as "a really long way".

    Okham, let's just say that there were some very awkward silences over brunch that day! And I learned to drive in a Golf - nice car.

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  10. can I just say that my favorite sweaters ever come from the Okanagwa valley? Totally off topic...anywho...

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  11. I opened the door into a skip, denting it slightly....I actually thought he was going to dump me

    March Hare was the one who had to teach me how to drive when we were dating in college because the city where I lived when I became old enough to drive was sort of like NYC--easier to get around in cabs and public transport than in a car.

    So, I had to learn how to drive...in his nice car (gift from family)...which was a stick-shift...in a city with very impatient drivers...who honk their horns at you if you're not going at least 10 mph over the speed limit....

    In any case, I never got any good at driving stick-shift and once made every single warning light on the dashboard light up. But he didn't dump me! :-)

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  12. Driving lessons and romantic relationships are not a good mix! My (failed, so far) attempts to get licensed in Canada are worthy of a whole post of their own. One day, in the distant future, when it actually happens...

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  13. p.s. sweaters?! That's a bit bizarre, I never thought of this region as a hub of the wool industry! Do you know the name of the shop?

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  14. My (failed, so far) attempts to get licensed in Canada are worthy of a whole post of their own.

    In my case it was pretty straightforward, as they accepted to convert my California driver license into an Alberta one. Yup, just like that...
    In the US it works pretty much the same way when moving to a new state, but...
    At the DMV in San Diego, I was made to take the test again because the person in charge (and I kid you not) refused to believe that "Delaware" was actually a state... and he would not check.

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  15. (Refrains from making comment about the US Education system)

    I couldn't transfer my UK license over, but instead I have to retake my test. I haven't driven regularly since I was 17, and that was in a small town, so my few attempts to drive in Vancouver scared the bejeesus out of me. So now, when people ask me if I drive, I reply "only on the left".

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