Summer Vacation 2016

July 17 to July 31, 2016

Summer vacation this year had three destinations: Otter Lake, Bella Coola and Birkenhead Lake. Double solitaire was the game of choice for this trip, although Jessica did learn the basics of cribbage near the end of the trip.

Double Solitaire

We had our own Saskatoon berry bush at Otter Lake.


We biked to Tulameen on the paved road one day and circled the lake on another. The route on the east side of the lake is part of the Kettle Valley Railway and Trans Canada Trail.

Kettle Valley Railway


On the way to Bella Coola, we went through Logan Lake in order to see Highland Valley Copper. It looks much smaller now that grass is starting to grow on the discard piles.

Highland Valley Copper

The drive from Otter Lake to Bella Coola is too long to do in one day, so we stopped at Bull Canyon Provincial Park and camped on the banks of the Chilcotin River.

Chilcotin River

Bull Canyon

Dents du lion

There is much evidence of forest fires in the area. This one was near the Tweedsmuir Park entrance and was interesting in how the trees grow amongst large boulders. One boulder per tree?

Tweedsmuir Park

We stopped at the lookout at the top of "The Hill". Meh.

The Hill

The only excitement on the way down was having to pass the water truck that was coming up. Ellen thought we were a little too close to the edge and it was a long ways down.

Rip Rap Campground in Hagensborg was very nice. We were on the view side of the campground.

Rip Rap

The Legion is across the road from Rip Rap and was serving burgers and beer for the opening night of the Bella Coola Music Festival. Unfortunately, Jessica had to stay at the campground and eat leftovers.

Saturday morning, we drove into Bella Coola for some sightseeing before going to the festival.


Bella Coola Wharf

Bella Coola Inlet

Bella Coola Museum

Bella Coola Music Festival

Serious Bubble

Sunday morning we gained 500 metres in elevation hiking up Nusatsum Mountain to Medby Rock lookout. The view of the valley and inlet was less than spectacular.

Medby Rock Lookout


The afternoon and evening were spent at the final day of the music festival.


Elage Diouf

On Monday we did more sightseeing. Clayton Falls Recreation Site in the morning.


Other Cannery

Clayton Falls

The deck at Rip Rap in the afternoon.


And in the evening we went to Saloompt Interpretive Forest before waiting for "the bear" at Thorsen Creek.

Mountains Above Hagensborg

Thorsen Creek

Mt Saugstad

We went up "The Hill" shortly after the water truck on Tuesday and collected some mud to transport back to Port Moody. There were no horses lying on the road at Anahim Lake on the way out.


We stopped to take a couple of pictures we didn't on the way in. The straight road.


And the cemetery.


We drove all the way to Felker Lake so we would not have as far to drive to Birkenhead Lake.

Felker Lake

Felker Lake


As the crow flies, Birkenhead Lake is about 140 kilometres from Felker Lake. So, how come it takes almost 9 hours to drive there?


Rock Scaling

Rock Scaling

Duffy Lake Road

We spent two nights at Birkenhead Lake but have no pictures to show for it since we took lots the last time we were there. Since we could only reserve two nights at Birkenhead, we went to Owl Creek for our final two nights.

We met a lady waiting for "the bear" in Bella Coola who grew up in Mount Currie. When she heard we were going to Birkenhead Lake, she asked if we were also going to the hotspring. We were curious so we left the trailer at Owl Creek and took a long, dusty, drive along the "road of death" as Jessica called it.


The hotsprings are very rustic but you can adjust the temperature to your liking, just mix the glacier water with the spring water.



The next day we biked from Owl Creek to Pemberton. Against the wind both ways! In the afternoon we sat and watched "the owls" as they "fished" before driving into D'Arcy to check out the RV park the hotspring attendant recommended. It's a good place for kids. Especially the ones that have powerboats and motorcycles.

Turkey Vultures

Turkey Vulture


The Owl Creek Campground is on the site of an old homestead and we must have been parked in the orchard.


It was a very relaxing trip considering how far we travelled.