2012 - 2017 Travel Map (Map NOT Current) - Now in South Prairie Washington

Salmon Arm, Logan Lake with Friends, Surry BC

August 21 - 27, 2017: 

This post brings us up to the day before we leave for our cruise to Alaska.  

We left Radium Hot Springs BC on Monday the 21st and headed out for the town of Salmon Arm BC for just one night.  Our next stop is the Town of Logan Lake where friends of ours are part-time workamping.  After Logan Lake we will be in Surrey which is a suburb of Vancouver BC.   On the first leg to Salmon Arm we changed a time zone again.  We are now on Pacific time.

Looks like a truck overturned here!

One of the biggest fires in BC history.
We smelled like we had been around a campfire!

Went through many of these snow sheds over the road.  It was a little scary as they have the height in meters.  Most were around 4.5 meters.  Let's see, 4x3 =12 feet plus a half, 13.5 feet roughly!

Salmon Arm is lot bigger town than we thought it would be. I mean really, Salmon Arm, how big can a town named that be anyway?!  Patty had picked a place to stay here that just didn’t work out.  It is on one those RV/Mobile Home parks that is way more mobile home than RV.  And the RVs are mostly permanent sites.  There were 3 sites here we could have potentially stayed in but they were very unlevel and the utilities were on the wrong side!  One of the 3 sites would have required us to pull into it straight on and then back out. We would not have been able to unhitch the truck.  This place was just not going to work no matter how much the Chinese owner tried to make us fit.

Chinese woman giving Patty the tour.  Patty already wanted out!

Patty found another place a couple of miles further up the road called the ValleyView RV Park.  This place was actually on our way and a little further along so it was a good pick.  Ah, but way more expensive!  The ValleyView was $51 a night.  But it included pretty good Wi-Fi, great cable, and 50 amp service.  This is the first and only place we have ever had 50 amp service in Canada!  We also got lucky here in that there was a blues festival all weekend and the place was filled until today.

Our final site in Salmon Arm.

We were at the ValleyView for just one night and we sort of wished we could have been here another day.  There is quite a bit here to explore and the area is really beautiful.  As with everything in life, you win some and you lose some and this was a loss for sure.  However, we have now been to Salmon Arm and we have seen some of its beauty so it is all good!

We managed to finally get some fresh corn in BC.  It was some of the best we have had ever.  It is as good as any we have had anywhere in the USA. It's always funny to us that everywhere you go everybody has the best corn, according to them.  Well, we have had great corn in most all areas except in the south.  Texas and Florida corn is just not good at all.
Shuswap Lake.  This is a very popular area and lake for local BC residents.  Very beautiful too.  This is a view from the Park we are at in Salmon Arm.

We were here in Salmon Arm for the big 2017 eclipse!  Here it was just 87% but it was still really cool to see.  This pic is just before it started.

This pic is at the most sun blocked during the eclipse. 

On Tuesday the 22nd we headed out to Logan Lake and the Logan Lake Campground.  This is a town owned and run campground.  Town owned places are usually great because they are cheaper, cleaner, and usually very near town services.  The Logan Lake campground didn’t disappoint us; it was a fine place to be sitting in this area.  We paid $28 a night, $21 USD, for an electric only with not so great Wi-Fi. 

Our site in Logan Lake

This WI-FI would have so much better if I had learned how to set up the PEPWave in Canada! OK, so I just learned that my Wi-Fi extender, PEPWave, needs to be set to Canada to work.  This is our second time in Canada with the rig and we didn’t know this!  In the settings of the PEP Wave it has a country setting.  Since we are in the USA most of the time I never touched this setting.  After 2 unsuccessful tries at 2 campgrounds to get the PEPWave to work I figured out that maybe it is something I am not doing correctly (not me!). I thought it might be that I had a normal setting wrong some where.  The PEPWave would connect to the campground router but wouldn’t pass through an IP address.  I saw the setting for country and set it to Canada and it now works great!  The PEPWave could have saved us a few times and we didn’t even know it!  I know now and hopefully anybody else who reads this will too now!

Logan Lake is a very small town located quite a few miles from a full services city.  It actually reminded us of what we believe the towns in Alaska will be like.  Our site had a rear window view of the Lake Logan Lake which was very nice. There was also a nice nature trail that I used for one of my interval walk/runs that I do.  The campground was electric only (30 amp) so we filled up our fresh water tank first and we were good for over a week easy or, with a little conserving, 2 weeks this way. 

View from our site and out our rear window.

Start of the nature trail around the lake

Views around the lake on the trail.

The town was a mining town so they have these huge mining vehicles on display.

During my trail walk I made it longer by walking through the small town.  I caught this guy in someone's backyard.

Just after we arrived we had made arrangements to meet up with Steve and Dianne Colibaba at their campground.  We met the Colibabas back in 2012 just after we started our full time RV life.  We met them at an RV-Dreams rally in Harrisburg Oregon.  Ever since then we have followed each other on line.  So now our paths are crossing so we get to meet and catch up again.

Steve and Diane's rig with our truck.

Patty, Dianne and Steve

A great couple!

We sat and talked for a couple of hours about how we have grown in our knowledge of RVing since we started.  Of course we discussed the many mechanical problems and solutions we have had too.  Then after that we had a nice dinner of Lasagna that Dianne had made.   Following dinner we took a tour of their campground where they are workamping ppart-time Then it was time for a little dessert.  It was a great day and before we knew it, we were getting cold and it was time to leave.

Now for the real sad part of this visit, Patty got sick!  This was one of her diabetic gastroparesis attacks that she has not had for over a year.  I had almost forgotten she gets these. Before we went to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville Florida last year she had these about every 2 weeks.  We had just talked about how well she was doing with Dianne and Steve too.
I got to see them once more, the next day when they came over after they were out on a road trip.  Patty wasn’t feeling well enough to get up out of bed.  We made plans to go out for dinner that evening, but as Patty was trying to get ready she just couldn’t make it.  Since the food she eats doesn’t always move out of her stomach fast enough she can’t stop belching which makes her nauseous and then real tired.  We made tentative plans to stop by on our last day there to visit on Steve’s birthday.  That didn’t happen either! Sad!

Both of us felt real bad that we didn’t get to visit more than we did.  Anyway, many thanks to Dianne and Steve for a great, but short visit!   Keep well and happy RVing to you both!

On Friday the 25th we traveled the last 200 miles to Surrey, a Vancouver BC suburb. We are staying at the Plaza RV and Mobile Home Park on King George Street in Surrey BC.  Our rig will be here in storage while we are on our 2 week land and cruise trip to Alaska.  When we get back we are staying another week to see the Vancouver area and visit with Patty’s nephew and his family (Brain, Ina, and Joey) that live here.

Our RV Park in Surrey BC

Our site here in Surrey

Quite the eclectic site a few down from ours here in Surrey.

Not sure you can get more of an RV inside a house as this!

We met up with Brain and Ina with their 19 month old daughter Joey for brunch on Saturday the 26th.  We had a nice brunch with them and it was also our first time meeting both Ina and Joey!  After lunch they all came over to our RV to pick up our plants.  They were gracious enough to take care of them for us while we are away.  Thanks guys!

At brunch at the Wooden Spoon with Ina, Joey, and Brain Schumacher

Sunday we spent the day packing and doing last minute stuff. We washed a few loads of clothes and finished packing.  We also unloaded the freezer/refrigerator and cleaned it.  It has been very difficult to know just what to pack for this trip.  We have always taken cruises to the islands where we don’t need many clothes.  And what we did take was not very bulky.  This time of year in Alaska can be wet and cold.  And that is what the weather app is telling us too, it’s going to be wet and cold!

Fridge mostly ready for us to leave now

Not to pat ourselves on the back or anything but we are excellent packers!  Both of us have done quite a bit of traveling and we like to travel as light as we can.  For this 2 week trip to Alaska we managed to fit what we needed into a carry on each and one a large carry on briefcase each.  I am very proud that we can do this!

This is how we roll.  Our luggage for 2 weeks in Alaska.

Tomorrow we catch a bus in front of our RV Park to a train that will take us to the cruise terminal.  Before we can leave though we have to shut down the RV and get it ready to be moved and stored.  We are leaving the RV in our present site and then the Park is going to move it to the storage yard in a couple of days.   The park is doing some construction around the storage yard so they don’t want our RV in there just yet.

We are to board tomorrow at 10:30 am!  This will be the last post until we are back in our RV.  Getting excited now!!

Stay tuned!

Radium Hot Springs/Kootenay National Park British Columbia Canada

August 18 – 20, 2017:  

Radium Hot Springs was an optional visit for us. We really didn’t know just how much time we would have in the area when we planned this 6 months ago.  We also wanted to fit some time in to visit friends on our way to Vancouver before the Alaska cruise next Monday the 28th.   It turned out that our friends, Dianne and Steve, were available as their quad event had been canceled due to the fire ban here.  That left us with time to visit the Radium Hot Springs area a bit.

The trip from Lake Louise to the hot springs was a little bit more mountain climbing than we have had so far.  Still wasn’t too bad though.  Most of the upgrades were short and around 7-8%.   However the last downgrade was a real doozy of 11% for about 5 miles! That last grade was coming into the town of Radium Hot Springs.  And just at the end of the grade was a very sharp curve that overlooked the town.  I wouldn't want to do this trip in the winter! With our engine brake I really don’t mind these downgrades that much though.

Entering British Columbia

Our start down into Radium Hot Springs at 11% grade

The end and the sharp curve at the end.

It took us about 2 hours to make the trip to Radium Hot Springs from Lake Louise.  Once we arrived we found out that we didn’t have a reservation as we had thought.  It seems that there are 2 campgrounds named the same thing, one here and one in northern BC.  We had a reservation at the one in northern BC and the one here was closed! Uh oh! 

We pulled over in a parking lot while Patty found us another place, and she did!  She found us a place on the other (North West) side of town on BC 95.  So we headed out of town for about 5 miles to the Edgewater Golf Course and RV Park.

The campground was very small, just around 10 sites, and we were surrounded by the golf course.  The owners had raised a family there and farmed the place until the late 80s.  They opened for business in 1994 as the golf course and campground.  Mom bakes pies for sale and runs a small cafĂ© on the premises.  Dad maintains the golf course and the park facilities.  It also looks like some of the kids are helping too. This is a nice family owned and run place and we highly recommend it! We there stayed for just 2 nights giving us one full day to explore and visit the hot springs.

Our nice site in the Edgewater RV Park.

They had fresh rhubarb pie!  We got 2!

Our main purpose for being here was to use the radium hot spring. We got our swimming suits and towels out and headed to the hot springs located just outside of town on BC 93. First, though, we had lunch on our way at the Horse Thief Creek Pub in town. Lunch was great, believe it or not.  Again the food on this trip out west has been really good and this place was no different.  I had fish and chips and the fish was perfect!

The Horse Thief Creek Pub

Now on the Radium Hot Springs.  The hot springs is just like a really good private run swimming pool but is owned by the National Parks System.  It has a cooler spring fed swimming pool and the Radium Hot Spring pool which we were mostly interested in.  The place is real cheap too at just $5.60 each. 

There is a walkway tunnel under BC 93 to the Hot Springs
from the parking lot.  This area is under construction.

The hot springs has a spa too that we did not use.  They have showers and mens and ladies locker rooms with coin operated lockers. The hot springs here have been open since the early 1900s and before it was used by the Indians.  In the 1920s the Canadian government took over the springs as part of the Kootenay National Park.

The Radium hot spring hot pool is between 100 and 103F. The day we are there the air was a little chilly at around 68F so the water felt real good when we got in.   However, it was a real bear to get out though, it felt really cold!  

Patty was hoping it had some effect on her skin itch issue but it didn’t. It actually seemed to cause her even more itch!  We really didn’t hold much hope that the springs would offer much help but we wanted to try anyway.  Her itch is mostly from a neurological issue that we have as yet get a complete answer to.

We spent about an hour and a half there before heading back to the RV.  For the price you just can’t beat this place. For just under $10 USD the 2 of us had the whole day if we wanted to, to use both pools!  For a few dollars more could have gotten massages too.  We should have done that, not sure why we didn’t!

That was it for our adventure to the Radium Hot Springs in Kootenay National Park.  This was a nice place to stay and unwind.  If we had to do this over we would have stayed an extra day and more fully enjoyed the hot spring, maybe a massage, and had dinner in town.  It was still a very good adventure and we are glad we went.

We had a visitor walk through our site!

Next up, we are headed further west to see a couple of RV friends (Dianne and Steve Colibaba) in Logan Lake BC.   First, we will do an overnight stay in Salmon Arms BC.

Stay Tuned!