We arrived in Vancouver on 10th November 2011. The first few months were a rush of organising where to live, applying for jobs, opening a bank account and getting used to the wet weather. At the start of 2012, things settled down a little but remained interesting! Here are the highlights of my first year in Canada on a working holiday

Year 1

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January – I started work at Mount Washington Alpine Resort (the long awaited ski season job!), and we both began learning to snowboard

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We moved out of our temporary arrival accommodation in Courtenay, to Merville (10km north) – enjoyed both beautifully warm and sunny days AND snow before we left in mid-Jan!

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February and March – two great snowboarding months, with two metres of snow falling within the first 10 days in March!

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April – End of the road…..of the ski season!

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May – Trying out our new canoe for the first time on the West Coast!

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May -My parents visited for 10 days; we packed a heck of a lot in and enjoyed amazingly warm May weather

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June – Canoeing beautiful Buttle Lake in Strathcona Provincial Park

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June – We moved back to Courtenay at the start of May, making it easier to see friends for badminton and barbeques!

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July – Woss Lake, during a weekend break from my new job at Miracle Beach Provincial Park

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August – Three fantastic days canoeing the Main Lake system on Quadra Island in perfect 30-degree weather. We also tried out spelunking (potholing or caving) and whale watching this month

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August – Mount Washington in full bloom; we visited to take the summer chairlift before I started back at the mountain in September!

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September – Canoeing Sandy Island; our first saltwater canoe camping experience

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We also enjoyed some lovely day trips canoeing in the Sayward Forest, while the summer weather continued

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October  – My first ever pumpkin picking! (and North American Halloween)

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October also brought the first substantial snow on Mount Washington!

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November – I had to do a border hop to activate my visa, so we spent 5 days in Seattle and around the Olympic Peninsula, Washington

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November – Snow’s a comin’!

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December – Season opening and Christmas on the mountain!

We’ve had an awesome year; just going through these photos to upload make me want to do so much of this again this year!

Gemma
Author

One half of a Canadian/British couple currently living in Penticton, British Columbia. Gemma is happiest with a paddle in her hand, on the trail or planning the next big adventure.

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