May 31st, we moved to Penticton in British Columbia’s Okanagan region. Life has been pretty sweet here this summer. For one thing, it’s been hot. Like, 38c hot for weeks at a time. The heat is not only good for swimming, paddling and general summer life, but also for wine and fruit. This makes for quite a happy combination for a summer of fun. OK, I was working full time too, but I think we made the most of our spare time. It helps that we live less than three minutes away from the beach (see photo below).
The Okanagan has long been our dream location to live in purely for the summer weather. Looking back at these photos, it has lived up to our expectations and more.
Above three photos – Challenge Penticton (3.8km swim, 180km bike ride, 42.2km run), Granfondo Axel Merckx (160km bike race) and the Peach Festival parade
Living in a desert
Did I already mention that the southern Okanagan is basically a desert? Seriously! Complete with cacti, rattlesnakes and tumbleweed, it’s a very special area of Canada to be living in. There’s also a bear or two around as well!
Unfortunately, this dry climate also means the risk of summer fires is high. There hasn’t been much rain anywhere in BC this year and hundreds of wildfires have been burning all over the province and also in neighbouring Washington state. Just last weekend we drove past a fire close to the highway. In late August the smoke from the fires was so bad that visibility was reduced to just a few metres for a whole week. It was a very strange time!
Before and after the smoke came in, we managed some pretty awesome adventures this summer. We free-camped on Okanagan Lake, hiked the Rim Trail in Cathedral Provincial Park and paddled a lot. Oh, and there was some climbing, parasailing and river tubing too, plus plenty of walking on the Trans Canada Trail close to our home.
Even better, some lovely family and friends visited us in our new place as well. All in all, a pretty great summer and we barely left our backyard!