Thursday, October 22, 2015

Down Country Roads

October 22nd, 2015

It was a gorgeous day.

We had made a quick trip to the doctor to get some prescriptions refilled and after we sat and mused about ' which way home".

 There are so many hills to travel up and over.  Down the Okanagan and up over the Richter Pass or  half way down the Okanagan and up the road that passes through ranching country, acres of vineyards, rolling hills, small lakes and eventually the great White Lake Observatory.

Or should we travel the east side of Skaha Lake where the cliffs lie high and steep and seduce adventurous kite flyers, down through Okanagan Falls

Or the short way, a winding, twisty road that snakes its way through a wonderful treed stretch of country until it meets up with the main highway on its way into Keremeos.  This one beloved of motorcycle riders and most familiar to my chauffeur son.....the Green Mountain Road.

We chose the last, and it was heavenly.  Near the end, close to where we would rejoin the Highway, the cottonwoods a little off to the west stood so tall, so majestic, so golden.... and beneath them the ground was damp and green, coloured in spots with fallen leaves.  If we could have stopped and made our way down to the small hollow  in which they stood  it would have been  holy and quiet and akin to being in a beautiful cathedral...

(not these trees to the left which look to me like young birches)

Can you stand a few more photos of these lovely valleys in the autumn?  These willl probably be the last, as the wind each day takes a few more leaves and scatters them around to dry.

Enough of this gadding - tomorrow I must go into the garden and put the plants to bed!!

Only a few chrysanthemums left blooming amongst all the
dried leaves and rusty blooms.

Time to put the welcome out for that melancholy month, November!

Monday, October 19, 2015

O is for Osoyoos

ABC Wednesday,
October 21st, 2015

The letter is O for Osoyoos

About ten miles south of Keremeos on the Crowsnest Highway, just before you

 reach the Canada/US border, you turn left and go up through desert country

over the Richter Pass, and as you leave the summit you begin to see signs below you

of the orchards and vineyards and waters that  surround the town of Osoyoos.

You will be most welcome. 

 This is another Tourist town with beaches and resorts, boating
and fishing, and they clasp the tourist to their friendly bosom.
The town's population (about 5000) swells  in the summer
months with visitors from elsewhere in B.C. and neighbouring Alberta,
as well as other places in Canada and the Pacific Northwest.

The origin of the name Osoyoos (O-sue-yus) was the word suius
meaning 'narrowing of the waters' in the local Okanagan language.

There is as little ithmus that goes part way across Osoyoos Lake, and the Lake itself
stretches into Washington, USA

As evidenced by rock and oral tradition aboriginal people have lived in the
Osoyoos area for thousands of years. 

The first Europeans (fur traders working for an American enterprise) ventured
up the Okanagan River to Osoyoos Lake in 1811.  The Hudson's Bay Company took over the fur trade in 1821 and the Okanagan Valley flourished and became a major trade route.

After the era of the Fur Traders gold transformed the economy of
the new colony of British Columbia and thousands of miners and drovers with cattle
crossed through the Customs House built in Osoyoos in 1861.

The climate is semi-arid with summers that are hot and dry, - on an average
one of the hottest areas in Canada.

The fall is sunny and pleasant and
the winters short and mild..  Spring comes to Osoyoos even earlier than it 
floats over the pass to the Similkameen.

Probably the most outstanding thing in modern day Osoyoos is the
economic and cultural growth of the Osoyoos Indian band.
They have an excellent chief who has led them to make good economic use
of the Band property.

A really stunning and sophisticated resort that sits on the hill above Osoyoos

Vineyards, a winery with cellars, a golf course, and a well used campground on the lake.

and standing over it all a native warrior, one of many metal sculptures in the complex

Down below in the town the summer months hum with visitors....

Apart from the town businesses the surrounding community is mainly devoted
to agriculture, and the stretch northward to Oliver, the next town,
is crowded with wineries, and known as The Million Mile.

"The call of the outdoors is irresistible in Osoyoos"

Osoyoos Lake beckons swimmers and sun-soakers, anglers and parasailers

Recently the Osoyoos Indian Band have been instrumental (amongst others) in bringing
the salmon back to Osoyoos Lake, which delights the hearts
of fishermen everywhere.

How to get there????

For more interesting Os visit here, at ABC Wednesday
with thanks to Denise and Roger and all open-hearted helpers....

Sunday, October 18, 2015

A photographic Post

When my kind son-in-law came over the Fairview pass and was 

overcome by the beautiful autumn colours along the road

and into the hills, he so sweetly offered me and my camera

a Sunday morning trip, to take in the sights!

Wow!  I said yes right away.

Don't ever turn down offers like that.....

We turned back at the road that leads up on to the Cawston Basin,

where seven or eight  years ago Charles and I slipped away,

 took a picnic lunch and stopped

to take in the view that the cows see every day......

Just a random few of the 200 or so pictures I snapped

........and home again, here are the trees in the orchard

wearing their golden leaves wrapped around their ankles.

If you want to see this particular beauty you will have to hurry

as the first frosty night, the first gusty wind, 

will leave the branches bare,,

with only the snow when it comes, to warm them.