We had thought about a trip to Yellowstone but with COVID we changed our plans to explore parts of Southern BC. The girls hadn’t really seen anywhere east of Chilliwack so this was a perfect opportunity to check out some of the great scenery BC has to offer.
This was our approximate route (Google wouldn’t show our ‘short-cut’ from Kimberly to Gray Creek/Nelson so I had to draw that part in myself.) We explored a number of side roads too.
We took about 2 weeks to cover the route so that gave time to explore a bit and travel at a relaxed pace and it was fun to show the girls where I lived many years ago (Lillooet) and many other places.
We took a ‘side road’ (Blowdown FSR) just after Duffey Lake and then hiked up to Blowdown Lake. It was beautiful although it was a bad year for bugs.
I had only been to Blowdown Lake once before and that was a ski trip so this was my first time to see the water there. It is picturesque.
Visited with some friends in Lillooet I hadn’t seen in about 30 years so that was fun, and then eastward to Kamloops and Shuswap country.
We spent a couple of days at Scotch Creek on Shuswap Lake. I had run my buddy’s parasailing business there for one summer many years ago so it was fun to be back there again. Our second night in Scotch Creek we got a spot in the provincial campsite with no reservation (who’d ‘a thought… long weekend, middle of summer)
Revelstoke was fun although tougher to find a campsite. We ended up staying on the side of Hwy 23 the first night and then found a spot at Martha Creek Provincial campsite the next night. Revelstoke sure is scenic and we enjoyed a trip up the ski hill and riding down their ‘Pipe Coaster’.
Then the scenic drive from Revelstoke to Golden – so impressive!
We decided to go to Banff so that necessitated crossing the border to Alberta.
It was overcast and raining when we got to Lake Louise but in some ways that was a blessing as if it had been a nice day we likely wouldn’t have been able to drive to Moraine Lake and I was really hoping the girls would get a chance to see that. (even with the less-than-stellar weather we had to wait until there was space in the Moraine Lake parking lot before they would let you start the drive in from Lake Louise)
The drive from Banff to Kimberly was nice. We camped near Canal Flats and checked out downtown Kimberly the next morning. I asked about the Gray Creek Pass route to Nelson at the tourist-info place and was told it was as in as good a shape as it had ever been so we decided to go that way rather than the highway.
Overall it was a great trip and I am so glad we got away when we did as the whole COVID situation hasn’t gotten any better in the last few months. I wonder what the summer of 2021 will bring… hopefully happy travels.
Note: in a comment below, Peter asked about the ‘Black Buttes’ which are the 2 rocky “sub-peaks” to the right of the summit of Baker in the photo above. Peter: here are 2 better photos of the Black Buttes from the ski-touring trip up Baker.