Bear Creek Parking Lot BC

CANADA DAY EH

July 1, 2016

Today is Canada Day EH , we are now at Bear Creek Provincial Park in the over flow parking area, which is much better than being at a Walmart parking Lot, nothing against Walmart but we actually have a view of the lake here. Therefore, we set up our BBQ, Canadian chairs and are getting ready for the fireworks. Canadians are amazing, friendly and full of life with a true love of their beautiful providence. The people played games; barbequed, swam in lake Okanagan and waited for the fireworks. They are strict in Canada about being loud and drinking too much, just a wonderful family atmosphere. At dusk, we took our chairs to the water’s edge, wrapped in blankets and enjoyed the spectacular fireworks show, well worth staying up past eleven for as it doesn’t get dark here until around 10;30 at night.

July 2, 2016

Another day spent in the overflow camping site, tomorrow we have reservations at Fintry Provincial Park, 14 Kilometers up the roadway but still on Lake Okanogan. Therefore, we are going to explore the town of Kelowna, find some wineries and enjoy the 80-degree weather. The wineries were beautiful. If we did not know, better we would think we were in Napa Valley, all with views of Okanagan Lake, very spectacular. Due to the holiday weekend the wineries were very crowded, charged $4.00 for a tasting, which you did not have to worry about, as you could not approach the tasting bar due to the crowds.  We did find a goat farm; yes, Julie a real goat farm named Carmelis Artisan Goat Cheese. Unbelievably they also wanted $2.00 for a tasting, but they had goat gelato and they had Jeff’s attention. We sampled lots of different, innovative goat cheese, spreads and gelato, very yummy.

 

Cheers from Canada jeff and Liz

CAMPBELL RIVER BC

June 19, 2016

We have arrived in Campbell River BC and will be staying for 9 days at The Thunderbird RV Park, site # 44. We plan on exploring the Campbell river in our nu canoe, geocaching and visiting some beautiful wineries.  The above picture is our view out of our trailer window, very serene and beautiful here, with an abundance of wildlife. Stay with us as we will show some amazing country, on our Canadian adventure. The picture below is of a permanent resident named Larry. He waddles up from the estuary and visits the campers periodically, he is beautiful and quite friendly.

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Sunset

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LARRY

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 20,2016

Tonight is the climax of 2016s longest day. Because we are at the 50th parallel the daylight lasts longer here. We usually try to go to bed around 9 or 10. Well here at Campbell River it’s pretty much light at 10 and throwing us off our time clock. At 9 pm we will say lets go bike riding and then realize the time. The night of June 20th we sat in our lawn chairs and witnessed the sunset around 9:30 pm.

June 21,2016

We geocached from Campbell River to Comox today, stopping at two wineries. Check out my geocaching and wine touring for additional pictures.

June 22,2016

Today we headed to Campbell Lake and Lake Buttle to kayacik. Such beautiful country and  not one other person on either lake. The two lakes are separated  by narrows which a bridge passes over. The steep mountainous terrain reminded me a lot of Yosemite National Park, very breath taking. A great exploring and kayaking day.

June 23, 2016

Today we stayed in Campbell River exploring shops, geocaching and exploring the harbor. Oh and don’t forget, Jeff is still looking for the best fish and chips around town.

 

Starting on Saturday Campbell River is having a Dragon Boat Race and Festival, we watched them practice today, quite near our campsite, can’t wait for the real race.

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Dragon Boat

June 24, 2016

Today we ventured down the sound, we were told a 5 day annual wood carving competition was beginning. The competition called “transformations on The Shore” began in 1995 by a resident of Campbell River named Max Chickite. As you approached the competition your senses come alive. Roaring chainsaws,grinders,the smell of cedar sawdust and the perception of the artist half finished masterpieces. Lions tigers and bears oh my! Okay we have a lion and bears, space aliens,mermaids, killer whales, manta rays and maybe the old man of the sea.The artist wear the logging safety gear especially dust mask and ear protection. You would have to be in good shape to carve for hours wielding chainsaws, grinders and tricky carving tools for hours on end. They stand on scaffolds reaching for the outer limits of their ability. How many hours they must spend from beginning to end is measured in days.

We met and talked to a woodcarver named Ron from Powell River. He made Liz a hatchet stuck in a piece of wood. He talked of how many years he has been carving, making his own carving knife blades from steel that he honed and shaped. The wood was a white cedar which does not grow in a lot of climates. He seemed so relaxed talking and carving and before you knew it there was an ax. I am going to obtain the right knife and try my hand at what looks easy but I know these guys have spent years honing their skills.Ron talked of life in Powell River, a town of 10,000 isolated on the BC mainland which you have to take 1 or 2 ferries to get there.A trip to Vancouver takes 5 hours.He liked the slow pace of life in Powell River and practicably the whole town works at the pulp mill. Well Ron I hope someday I can show my grandkids a hatchet.

June 25, 2016

Exciting day today, yes it is the  Dragon Boat Race competition happening right here in our estuary.

 

Campbell River’s Sixth Annual Dragon Boat Regatta – June 25th 2016

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Campbell River’s River Spirit in action at a recent Dragon Boat Regatta.

Winning either Silver or Bronze at every Race the River dragon-boat regatta since the event began in 2011, the local team has never won the Gold Medal.

With nineteen teams competing, bringing home Gold won’t be easy this year either. Nevertheless, the whole River Spirit team feel they can do it.

Race Day Schedule:

  • 07:30 – All Waivers submitted to Registration.
  • 07:45 Team Managers/ Captains/ Tillers meeting
  • 07:45 – Team Welcome Address
  • 07:55 – Group Warm-up
  • 08:05 – Call for Race #1 
  • 08:15 – Load for Race #1 
  • 08:30 Horn Sounds for Race #1 
  • 11:30 – Marine Harvest Salmon BBQ Open
  • 12:30 – Cancer Survivors Carnation Ceremony and Lunch Break
  • 13:00 – Races Resume
  • 16:00 Award Presentations

Competing teams:

1) Abreast of Life – Central Vancouver Island; 2) Angels Abreast – Nanaimo; 3) BraveHearts – Campbell River; 4) Chix with Stix – Nanaimo; 5) Blazing Paddles – Comox; 6) Flying Dragons – Comox; 7) Dragon Divas – Cowichan Valley; 8) Hope Afloat – Comox; 9) Dragonflies – Nanaimo; 10) Dragon Slayers – Pt. McNeill; 11) River Spirit – Campbell River; 12) Tri-Port Warriors – Pt. Hardy; 13) Welly Waveriders – Nanaimo; 14) Angels and Demons; 15) Aquaholics – Nanaimo; 16) Dragonflies – Comox; 17) Dragon Riders – Comox; 18) Cowichan Bay Spirit Dragons; 19) Prevailing Wins – Comox.

June 26, 2016

Today’s exploration, includes The Campbell River farmers market, elk falls suspension bridge and kayaking in the estuary today. Fun Times.

Below is our new flag flying high above Rufus (our trailer) Top one is an 11, hence-   jetrite 11 and the new bottom one is THE  CANADIAN flag. Canada Day is July 1 and we want to be ready to celebrate .

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As we were walking towards the farmers market we  saw 2 Humpback whales, right off of the pier along the sound, what a thrill. Both whales would roll up, spew water and both stuck their tails in the air as they were diving . Just spectacular. The camera had just shut down so we missed the shot.

Off we go to the farmers market. Situated right along the sound in the parking lot of The Maritime Museum. We found lots of organic veggies, fresh peaches, raspberries and strawberries. How do you decide, well being a Gemini, I don’t, I get a little of it all, like a sample pack. Ha! On our wine tour on Thursday we tried to visit the  Blue Moon winery, but they were closed. Well guess who we ran into at the farmers market,  Blue Moon Winery, giving samples this day of their award winning Ciders. I really enjoyed the  Ravens Moon ragged ass road Cider, laced with bourbon. Good Stuff!!!

Next we were off to hike to the suspension bridge at Elk Falls. 

What a beautiful surprise, the trail to the falls were very well groomed and beautiful with all of the old growth cedar trees. Then you arrive at the suspension bridge and falls, just amazing and so fun to walk across the bridge looking way, way down at water and boulders. Yikes. A few people would not take the walk across, but not us, we bolted across like we were 20 years old again. Ok ,fine, back to reality.

The Power Company is Tunneling from the Lake to the power turbines. The tunnels will replace the 3 large pipes that you see in the photo. The pipe from many years ago is made of wood. The fear is that in an earthquake the old pipe wouldn’t stand up to well. I would say that their fears are well founded, scary,  very scary.

The grand finale of the day, kayaking the Campbell River estuary in the late afternoon 5 ish to be exact. The water was smooth as glass and the outside temp was 76, just a perfect evening. Larry the resident swan literally followed us around the estuary, I think he is very lonely or has become very attached to the lime green kayak. The yellow smiley flag is our neighbor Ray and Ann, fellow bloggers.

June 27, 2016

Today we stayed around the campsite and I am glad we did, the baby eagles decided to fly out of their nest and one baby landed right in front of our camp site. His mom then landed alongside of him and literally was teaching him how to drink water in the estuary. The low tide enabled him to have a little water to begin his lesson and after about a half an hour he got it and started drinking just like mom. It was so amazing to see the two communicate and life lessons being learned.

Later in the afternoon we had Ray, Anne and Angie over for a BBQ. Good times with new special friends. Ray is a fellow blogger and has a Youtube channel called “love your RV” and Ann has a photography blog called “Anne McKinnell Photography“. Oh and Angie is their very special beagle, who likes to sit in a red lawn chair and loves apple pie. The above picture next to Larry the swan is Ray and Ann’s flag on the back of their RV.

 

June 28, 2016

This is our last day in Campbell River. We have certainly enjoyed the area and the super friendly people. We are taking a shuttle boat to Quadra Island, just a 10 minute boat ride across the sound to April Point Lodge. Beautiful day today in the mid 70’s, the island was quaint with narrow winding roads and very little traffic. We enjoyed a gourmet lunch out on the outdoor patio looking out to sea, we even were visited by a very curious seal and numerous eagles fishing their hearts out..

This evening we had to say goodbye to Ray and Angie and hope to see them again in our travels. Next adventure we will taking the Ferry to VanCouver, BC.

GOOD BY CAMPBELL RIVER FROM-Just around the bend

 

 

 

SOOKE HARBOR HOUSE

JUNE 17, 2016
Sooke BC is today’s adventure. Jeff’s great aunt May,s house is still located in Sooke and we are headed to locate it today. In the 1950,s, Jeff’s family visited her often. We found Aunt May’s house it is in good shape and Jeff totally recognized it. Jeff has fond memories of Aunt May’s homemade food and how vibrant she was See picture BELOW.

IMG_6908.JPG Off we go to Whiffen spit park. It’s a 1 ½ mile walk to the end of the spit with (yes) 6 geocaches along the way. Oh yeah, we found all of the caches and all are in great shape with unique containers. We sat at the end of the spit  and watched the fishing boats come in and hoped to see a whale or sea lion. Well not today.IMG_6903.JPG

At the beginning of the spit is a Bed and Breakfast call Sooke Harbor House. Famous for its vast grounds of organic edible flowers, vegetables and fresh seafood. We treated ourselves for our anniversary to lunch. Jeff had fresh caught sole with a pear salsa over lentils sautéed in a herbal infused broth. Topped with a variety of edible flowers, which gave an additional unique flavor to the dish. OMG!!!!! I really didn’t think my dish could top his but it was as excellent. I ordered the fresh clams and mussels in a smoked bacon and ale broth. It was Devine, including the garnish of edible flowers for flavor and texture.

 

 

 

On the way out of town, we had been told about a unique coffee shop called “ Stick In The Mud”. If you want to read about them their web it is stickinthemud.ca, it is the best coffee I have ever had. They roast their own beans right on the premises and just the smell is incredible. It is definitely worth a trip to Sooke BC.

CHEERS FROM JUST AROUND THE BEND

 

 

ROYAL BC MUSEUM – PATRICK & JANE

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June 16, 2016
Today’s adventure is to the Royal BC Museum in downtown Victoria BC. Admission was $17.00 dollars for seniors, for the whole day including all exhibits. The museum had just opened a Mammoth Expo that was incredible. We brought snacks but there was a Food Truck festival behind the museum and off we headed to try fresh salmon burgers and beet fries. YUM

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BUNKERS

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Off we go to Esquimalt beach to, yes of course, Geocaching. We walked the perimeter of the park, exploring more bunkers and tunnels, locating two caches, so fun.

. We are starting to work up an appetite, so it is time to head over to Jeff’s second cousin’s house for a special dinner they are preparing for us.

What a memorable evening we spent with Patrick and Jane ,wonderful food, good wine and time to catch up on old memories. Their house is located on top of a hill on an acre overlooking The Strait of Juan De Fuca, what a spectacular view. What a special way to end a perfect day.

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UNTIL NEXT TIME CHEERS FROM JUST AROUND THE BEND

MV COHO FERRY TRIP

 

IMG_6808June 16 2016
Our Canadian adventure continues, we are leaving Ft Worden State park and headed to the MV Coho ferry out of Port Angeles. The weather is rainy, 54 degrees and looks like we may get some good waves going across to Victoria, BC.
I am so excited and anxious at the same time. Anxious about our RV (Rufus) on a super crowded ferry and excited, as it is my first time to experience such an exciting adventure. I was surprised that is has only taken thirty minutes to load this 341 foot long vessel. Boy do they crowd everyone in, Josh would hate this. It finally stopped raining after about thirty minutes under way and we enjoyed the deck view. I even spotted a gigantic whale; Jeff missed it!!!!
On ward to Oceanside RV Park, we will be here for 5 days exploring Victoria and the surrounding areas. Tomorrow we will visit Jeff’s cousins, Patrick and Jane Matthews for dinner at their lovely home.
To Be Continued EH!!!!

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Ft Worden Historical State Park

 

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June 15, 2016

Our Canadian adventure begins at Ft Worden State Park, located in Port Townsend Washington. We are here to hike, ride bikes, explore and Geocache.

We started out by meeting our family friends Jim and Jane for breakfast at the Blue Moose Cafe, fun place with funky decor. They set aside the whole morning to show us around Port Townsend.  The town is a steampunk town (look that up) and they were having a steam punk festival, very unique. We also toured a wooden boat factory and a cool bakery.

The next two days we spent exploring and geocaching in and around  WWI bunkers, see pictures below. Ft Worden in the park itself has, two very large areas of bunkers, lot of beautiful trails to explore and a really beautiful lighthouse, with free tours.

We did treat ourselves for our 21st anniversary and had dinner downtown at Sirens. We sat outside on the deck  and watched the river otters feed and play. The food was incredible. We would definitely come back to stay, just a beautiful park with all of the amenities.

REMEMBER WE ARE  JUST AROUND THE BEND