Spotted Lake

October 23, 2018

Just west of Osoyoos, in the eastern part of the Similkameen Valley, is Spotted Lake. The lake has high concentrations of a variety of minerals. As the water evaporates during the summer, the mineral deposits are revealed and look like large spots. In the spring, the spots seemed more pronounced to me. The colors of the spots depend on mineral composition and precipitation. It’s quite hard to capture the spots by camera. I’ve tried many times. If there is a breeze or sun glare, the lake is harder to photograph. I was finally able to photograph the spots. Fortunately, the lake is only about 30 minutes from Keremeos, so we pass by every other week on our way to Osoyoos.  Apparently, there are 3 such lakes between Keremeos and Osoyoos, so I’ll try to “spot” those too.



Okanagan Gleaners

October 19, 2018


After we left Nk’Mip in Osoyoos, we headed north to Oliver, BC to visit Len and Marj at the Okanagan Gleaners, where they volunteer during the winter months. They stay in their Airstream motorhome in the onsite campground and volunteer 4 hours per day.

This non-profit organization makes dried soup mixes that are sent overseas to people in need. Local farmers send them surplus produce that can’t be sold in grocery stores (e.g. apples and potatoes that are too big or considered “ugly”) instead of composting or trashing them. There is an abundance of produce in the Okanagan, so the Gleaners process the unwanted fruits and vegetables by dehydrating them to make the soup mixes.

The winter volunteers work for 4 hours in the morning, cleaning and cutting vegetables, which go into a massive dehydrator. The dehydrator takes up an entire room on its own! It is fully computerized and shuts off when the process is complete.

The dried product is stored in drums and is later mixed and packaged. The soup mixes do not contain seasonings so that the local flavors can be added at their destinations.

The Gleaners work with relief organizations like: World Vision Canada, Mennonite Central Committee and Mission Without Borders.

Len and Marj gave us a full tour because it was afternoon and work for the day had ended. In the evening, we had a barbecue with Len and Marj and stayed in the campground for the night.


Campground with shower house in background


Camping at Nk’Mip, Osoyoos, BC

October 15-18, 2018


Back in April, we made a reservation at Nk’Mip (pronounced: ink-a-meep) for October 15-November 15 because we needed somewhere mild to settle before heading south. However, we no longer needed the reservation. Nk’Mip wouldn’t allow us to transfer our reservation to a friend and we couldn’t cancel and get our $100 deposit back. We love that campground, so we decided to head out in the Chinook and use up the $100. We got a site right on Lake Osoyoos. The weather was grand and the view was spectacular. We got in some hiking and biking and had a visit with Len and Marj, friends from our Airstream club.  Len and Marj are from Moose Jaw, SK, but they stay in Oliver, BC for the winter.  They took us out for a delicious dinner in town.

Paul de-oxidized and polished the Chinook:

Enjoying beautiful autumn weather at Lake Osoyoos:

Walking the trail in the park:

Little Joe:

We saw this tiny fiberglass egg with Saskatchewan plates in April when we were here, and it was here again!  It is significantly smaller than our boler.  Here is a link to factory website: Weis Craft Trailers


Fall Colors on the Similkameen Rail Trail

October 2018


The Similkameen walking and biking trail starts just west of Keremeos and extends east to Cawston. It used to be an old rail line but was converted into a trail. We started walking this trail regularly since October 5, the day after Daisy died. It gives us a private area to walk and talk about how much we miss our dear girl.

(Please click on a photo to enlarge.)

Lots of color

Finding geocaches and a llama

Happy Poppy




More Day-Tripping

Late September 2018

We’ve spent quite a few days driving through the valley. We like investigating the provincial park campgrounds and walking trails. We also liked to give Daisy different views and chances to sniff new areas since we knew her time with us was ending.

If we leave our RV park and head west on Highway 3, the next town is Hedley. Beyond Hedley is Doug’s Homestead. Everyone raves about Doug’s pepperoni and jerky. We were disappointed to learn that the pepperoni is really pepperettes. However, it is very tasty. So, we asked Doug to make us dollar-sized pepperoni. Oh yeah! Perfect! Our pizza oven is back in business. We’ve made pizzas down at the fire pit in our RV park for anyone who showed up. One night, we made 6 pizzas! What fun!

Near Doug’s is the turn off to Old Hedley Rd. There are several provincial campgrounds there, so we often pack a picnic and head to a campground to watch the Similkameen River and let Poppy get out some zoomies and Daisy got to sniff.

Between Hedley and Princeton is Bromley Rock P.P. It has a nice beach and picnic facilities, but no camping.

After all the sniffing, the girls got pretty tuckered out.

Good-bye Sweet Daisy

On October 4, 2018 we said good-bye to our dear sweet Daisy. She lived to the fine age of 15 ½. She was born in Edmonton, danced into our hearts in Saskatoon, and died in Penticton. She added so much joy to our lives that it is hard to imagine life without her. Even though our last year was challenging as we provided hospice care for her, we will cherish those moments.

Enjoying a campfire a few days ago

Let’s remember her with some epithets and many pictures (click on pics to enlarge):

Amuser of Canines

True to her breed, she liked to entertain other dogs, especially her big brother, Goliath. When she came to live with us, he looked up at us as if to say, “She’s mine? She’s really mine?” She brightened his life and her “uncle” Sundance’s life too by being a wrestling partner. She was sturdy, and though they tried to tip her over, she stood her ground.

Princess of the Skies

From the tender age of 8 months, she flew regularly with me to visit my family in Ontario. She never fussed. She just cuddled into her travel bag and took it all in stride. On our very first connection through Winnipeg, the security agent lifted Daisy from her bag and held her in the air (in Lion King fashion) and pronounced: “It’s a Shih Tzu!” Daisy just gazed at her subjects.

Devourer of Groceries

We always enjoyed taking the dogs when running errands. However, there was always a risk associated with it if groceries were on the agenda. Many a baguette was pulled off the dashboard and munched on. The most daring move she ever made was when we had a roast in the bag of groceries. While we were in another store, Daisy went through the groceries and dragged the roast to her spot in the Jeep. She tore open the wrapping and proceeded to gnaw away at it. When we returned to the vehicle, Goliath was shaking in the corner and Daisy’s face was covered in beef juices. We could just imagine Goliath warning her, “Oh Daisy! That doesn’t belong to you. God doesn’t like it when you steal.” (imagine the Claymation Goliath voice in your head)

Oh Davey

Master of the Stink Eye

She may have been small, but she had a powerful gaze. She could stare down a dog many times her size. My sister’s pitbull, Penny, gave Daisy a wide berth when she passed by. Daisy just knew how to claim her space, and her humans. When Paul cuddled another dog, she really gave the stink eye. Sometimes her whole body would vibrate.

Fashionista of Saskatoon

No dog could rock a coat like Daisy! She loved to be warm, so she had quite a collection of coats (and broaches). Her favorite was her Czarina coat. It was reversible burgundy fun-fur and velvet. It kept her even warmer than her down parka. Keeping warm is a serious business in Saskatoon in winter. As a pup, she would race outside to do her business and then race right back in. However, by the time she was 10, she would race outside, but then become so cold that she couldn’t make it back inside. We would often have to run out to lift her from the snow.


The Great Road Tripper

Daisy was a great traveller. She travelled by vehicle across Canada and the USA, and this past winter, she even went to Mexico. She loved car rides, short and long. She camped in our boler, Surf-Side, Airstream 23, Chinook, and Airstream 30. She was just as content hanging over Paul’s shoulder or riding in her Pet Cruiser bike basket. But one of her happiest places was in her bag.

The One Who Never Barks

Daisy was never a barker. Remember, she was the Master of the Stink Eye, so barking was unnecessary for her. One day, we were visiting friends at their cottage at Emma Lake. We all went in for dinner, and we put Daisy and Goliath in the screened porch. They’d be ok. Well, Daisy was beside herself. What in the world were we doing inside with all that food when she was outside, like a common dog?! She summoned up her gravelly bark and worked herself into a lather. She was nearly frothing at the mouth. We had never seen nor heard this side of Daisy before. Poor Goliath just looked on, “Oh, Daisy!”


Begging at Gammy’s door

The Tiny Table Dancer

In her younger years, she was quite an agile girl. She could balance on the back of the Jeep seats, the sofa, Paul’s shoulder, or any high place, almost like a cat. When she was still a puppy, I visited a friend to show her Daisy. While we were visiting, Daisy went missing. We found her dancing on the kitchen table, sniffing out snacks. A few years later, when she was spayed, she was dancing all over the Jeep on the way home. Once we got home, she was doing gymnastics and ballet all over the house. I want to remember those years and not the months when we had to carry her and support her to do her basic functions.

The Puppy-sitter

Daisy loved puppies!


We will miss her forever.  Wherever we went, she was with us.  Whenever Paul was apart from us due to travel, the first thing he’d ask was, “How’s Daisy?”  That was always our joke.  When she no longer gave Daddy Nose Kisses, we knew our time with her was coming to an end.

Good-bye our sweet little dumpling . . .


. . . You will remain forever in our hearts.



The Similkameen Valley

Rugged. Rustic. Real.
This is the motto of the valley.

Here are some beautiful views of the valley that we now call our basecamp. (Does this make me a Valley Girl?) We have taken day trips along the Similkameen River, up the Old Hedley highway, along the Ashnola River, and up Apex Mountain. All of these are close by.

Along the Old Hedley Highway:

Near our RV park, along Highway 3


Apex Mountain