Osoyoos, Penticton and the Okanagan Valley

Got more time to write now. Day 2 and onward!

After my first night at Cathedral Provincial Park, I got up, realized I couldn’t be bothered to cook breakfast on my BBQ (which had to be packed away into the car every night, bears would just think it was Christmas otherwise), and promptly drove into the next town, Keremeos, where I stopped at a Fruit Stand by the side of the road to grab some snacks.

As I was driving, I noticed the landscape was really starting to change, as I had been warned, into a drier semi-desert. As I got to Osoyoos, it really was starting to look that way… except that there were vineyards everywhere!

I chilled out in Osoyoos for a bit then went wine tasting. Wish I could remember where I took this, but this was the view:

Vineyard country!

Looking north, towards Oliver

Carried on around quite a few vineyards that day, including (but not limited to as I can’t remember every last one off the top of my head 4 days later when I write this); Oliver Twist, Quinta Ferreria, Hester Creek, Rustico (where I ordered a whole case on behalf of me and a friend). My car ended up looking a bit lush:

That will be fun to drink!

Anyway, time was getting on so I decided I needed to look for a place to sleep that night. I spotted a road that looked like it might lead to a campsite, so i decided that was as good a reason as any to drive up it. Turns out it was just a logging road, with a loose gravel/dust surface.

But the view was good.

Might be the photo that sums up the whole trip

Eventually I backtracked, I resorted to a private campsite just outside Okanagan Falls.

Day 3 and I head for Penticton… I’ve been look forward to this since my friend told me about her trip a few weeks ago. To get there though, I decided to drive a back route to see what was out there, eventually ending up at White Lake, and I spotted something in the distance…

What are those in the distance? Look like satellite dishes.

Turns out I had stumbled across the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory. Decided to walk in, but there were rather off-putting signs around.


Essentially, 7 radio telescopes are in an exact East-West row. 3 of them are mounted on rails to allow them to be moved (the more distant ones in this photo). It allows for great radio imaging.

A quick wonder round later, I had not been bitten by a rattlesnake, so drove on Penticton. I was kind of lost for things to do if I’m honest, was a cloudy day, so after lunch and writing that first blog post, I headed for a drive up in the hills. One more wine stop later, I had a look at the front of the car and saw just how many bugs it was picking up!

How am I supposed to get all them off?

I didn’t take any photos of this next bit. I got it into my head that Apex Mountain had an RV Park or Campground, so I drove the 31km up there through nice windy roads (great drive). When I got there I was very much mistaken, and it was getting dark. So, instead of just turning back like I should have, I took off towards Nickel Plate Provincial Park. Pay attention to that page, I didn’t. Although camping is allowed, you need a 4×4 to get there, and that was certainly the case when I saw the access road. My AWD Impreza was not going to do it, I like the suspension (which is road going) more than I wanted a free camp site.

Defeated, I drove back to Penticton and another commercial campground.

Day 4 and I woke up with one thing on my mind, going for a float down the river. So after finding breakfast, I drove all over town finding a floaty:

How else was I going to get it in the car!?

Then I realized the bus service I was going to use could have rented them to me if I had read the sign. Ah well, I had it now, so off I went for a relaxing float. If any of you do this, I tell you the route is longer than it looks, I think it was about 45 minutes of floating. Well worth it if you’re in the area!

After that I headed north, stopped for a swim at Kickininee Provincial Park. Even broke out the snorkel and mask to see what was down there (kelp forest and quite a lot of small fish, possibly a kind of wrasse). Was great!

Great view of Okanagan Lake

Anyway, I then checked out Summerland for a little while, but decided to head into Kelowna. Where, after some deliberating, I decided to check in to the Samesun that night and meet some folks. Tuesday is a bit of quiet night though, so didn’t meet as many people as I thought. However, I got a 4 bed room to myself, so all good there!

And now, I’m off to explore Kelowna!


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