It was our 29th wedding anniversary in late September, and so we treated ourselves to a stay at Sparkling Hill Spa Resort - a world-class destination in our back yard, so to speak.
|Sparking Hill Spa Resort, south of Vernon BC|
Definitely a destination if you're visiting the area.
Our stay included full access to the various steam rooms and saunas, pools and perks.
The meals were remarkable. The people we met (guests and staff) gracious and interesting.
|View from the room to the east, Coldstream Valley in the distance behind the trees.|
There are deals, it can be affordable and we will be back.
Returned home, saddled up the bikes and headed for what was supposed to be a leisurely tour through the Slocan Valley.
Torrential rain (turning to snow at +1700m passes) hijacked our plans. We did ride further east to the Kootenays and up the valley past Invermere to Golden, and there aren't many photos because we did more riding than stopping, and more drying-out of gear than going-out-on-the-town at our overnight stops.
|On the road again. Bryan's 500cc Piaggo scooter on the left. |
He's ridden it to Calgary and back, and 1400km on this trip.
The photo is deceptive - there was rain shortly after we stopped here in Castlegar.
|The mightly Columbia River in Castlegar. Nice view from our room.|
|"What shall I make for supper tonight?"|
We went for Indian - butter chicken nom, nom, nom.
One of the check-it-off-the-list items was to FINALLY see the pedestrian bridge in Golden, built in 2009. I'd seen a documentary film about it while visiting Bryan's mom one time, and then decided it was worth a look. Unfortunately Golden is almost always a point along a trip to somewhere else and never a destination in itself. The bridge was worth the stop, but the remarkable roast lamb we enjoyed at a Greek restaurant in town will guarantee a return visit.
|Kicking Horse Pedestrian Bridge over the Kicking Horse River in Golden.|
|The bridge was built by volunteer craftsmen from around the world and completed in 2 weeks. |
Great documentary video about the build available on youtube.
|Subsequent development of Spirit Park makes it a truly lovely spot.|
|Yes. Fresh snow in late September ... and not much below the altitude we'd been riding at the day before|
(1775m at the Kootenay Pass Summit on Hwy 3).
On Friday we went over to Edge of the Earth winery, just east of us between home and Armstrong. It's one of the smallest vineyards in BC and this year produced four wines: ortega, marechal foch, foch port and the best pinot noir ice wine in the world.
|A great day of browsing and shopping. Good wine from Edge of the Earth and |
good reads from a used book store close-out sale.
|Port. Yes, I've found a port I like.|
|Much greater surprise - found a marechal foch that I like!|
I needed some photos for the cover of our weekly real estate supplement, so detoured slightly on the way to town a week ago Thursday. At 7:30 am this time of year, the light can be breathtaking, and the wet weather made for interesting conditions. In fact, the city of Vernon was completely buried in fog at this moment.
|Early October morning, on the way to work.|
We had another busy and very enjoyable week with company. My dad came out from Alberta and stayed with us for five days. Steve from up north and his girlfriend Val stopped over on their brief motorcycle ride through the area. Always interesting to mix up people who otherwise would never have a reason to be in the same place at the same time!
Dad and Bryan saw spawning salmon up at Adams River, checked out the local places of interest. He and I went on our own Sunday drive and included a visit with some of his cousins in the area.
All in all, a great time.
It's Thanksgiving this weekend in Canada and so we have family coming for the annual feast of roast turkey and fresh pumpkin pie.
Harvest greetings and blessings to you all!