Okanagan, Canada
50° 21' N 119° 20' W
Jul 26, 2010 13:27
Distance 281km

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My Childhood Summer Vacation Area

After seeing the Rockies we were heading back to Vancouver via the Kootenays, Osoyoos and Vernon.  The trip was essentially a counter clockwise loop, with this leg being the bottom part of the oval.

The distances are long, it took 1 ½ days of calm driving to get from Banff to Osoyoos, where we rested for two days at my high school chum’s(Eric)  summer home on Lake Osoyoos.  Osoyoos is on/in the Okanagan Valley.  This is a collection of three or four lakes that run north/south for about 250 K. 

Osoyoos is very special to me as I spent my formative summer vacations from 1963 to 1976  (11 to 24 years old) on this lake for 2 ½ weeks with the entire de Rooy family (two parents and six children).  Those youthful years and the leisure/luxury of being together as a family are forever imprinted into my DNA. 

To stay on the lake with Eric is such good déjà vu.  Another dear friend from high school joined us (Lyn) and the three of us reminiscented about our youthful follies. We met in 1967 and continued together as a team all the way through university and then pursued our separate careers, but stayed in touch.

After Osoyoos we went further up (north) the Okanagan Valley to my brother Ken’s cabin on Lake Okanagan.  Ken has his home in Vernon, which is in the Okanagan and has a summer cabin nearby where he lives and commutes to work from for two or three months every summer.  It was Ken’s 60th birthday so I made a point of being there.  He made a water fountain/show in lieu of fireworks to commemorate his birthday.  You will photos of the water show below.  We stayed with Ken for two days and then returned to Vancouver.

This trip around BC and Alberta lasted 9 day, and we cover over 3,000 K.  It was a driving holiday for sure.  Jane had to admit that Canada is big and wonderful.  Next time we are back, we will not try to see or do so much; once is enough.  In fairness, parts of this trip were a first for me also. 

So glad I could share my back yard with you.  British Columbia’s motto is: “Beautiful BC” and that it is for sure.  If you want history, large cities or world class culture you are in the wrong place.  But for natural beauty there are few places finer!!

Photos / videos of "My Childhood Summer Vacation Area":

Nelson, Bc.  this is actually in the Kootenays. If you are keen to totally drop out and commune with nature this is the place to go to.  "Hippie"communities still thrive in the Kootenays, a real throw-back to the late 60's. One of the lakes in the Kootenays.  This lake goes on for what seems forever.  Enoght shoreline for everyone. Looking down on Osoyoos and Lake Osoyoss.  From about 1963 (or 64) until 1976 the whole de Rooy family (all 8 of us) stayed in a motel directly on this lake for 2 1/2 weeks.  The motel was in the bay in the far centre of the middle of the three connected lakes. My two dearest highschool chums, Eric (left) and Lyn (right).  We meet in ''67 and have keep up for over 40 years.  Eric has a summer home on Lake Osoyoos. Lyn worked as a pharacist (chemist) in Oliver (nearby) and retired 1 year ago.  Lyn was my best man at my wedding last year. Eric and Pat's (his wife of 38 years) summer home on Lake Osoyoos.  His place is 6 star. Beach directly in front of Eric's summer place.  I have come here each summer for the past three years.  Good memories with dearl and long time friends Lake Okanagan.  This lake runs north/south for over 100 K.  During the summer this valley is assured of temperatures from the low 20's to the mid 30's.  Area is also famous for it wine.  A favourite summer vacation area for Western Canadians. Welsh and BC flags.  Lyn set them up for Jane.  Okanagan Valley country side.  Major industry is tourism, then wine making, then cattle ranching and forestry. A home along the room that got caught by a mud slide earlier in the year.  Another view of Lake Okanagan. Some wildlife along the road side. My borther Ken's water fountains.  He is an engineer and loves to build things.  If was his 60th birthday and he could not have fireworks so he made this instead.  Later you will see phots of it at night. Ken's cabin on the lake.  Eric's place is on Lake Osoyoos which is 150 K south and part of the same collection of lakes Water skiing.  Learned how to water ski 45 years ago.  Took tow tries to get it right.  Lack the endurance and passion for water skiing that I had those many years ago. View of the bay where Ken has his cabin. Ken's water fountain at night, for his actual 60th Bday.  Quite impressive. Maximum heigh.  The water is shotting about 25 metes into the air  There are controls for seven different water jets plus a complete set of lights.  Ken does not like to do things half measure. Ken, Jane and I.  For the record, Ken is older than me by 30 months.