Tag Archive | explore bc

Fort Langley Cranberry Festival

Every year Fort Langley plays host to the annual Cranberry Festival. Yesterday was that time of year again and Kevin and I decided to check it out with some family and friends.

I’ve been to and volunteered at this event many times over the years. It gets a little bigger every year. This year I notice the local cranberry theme was weak and the whole event had a very farmers market feel about it. None the less I enjoyed my day with family and friends.

Fort Langley is a beautiful little village that lays along side the Fraser river with a rich history that affects not only British Columbia but the whole country of Canada! Fort Langley is the location where, a century and a half ago, Hudson’s Bay Company established it’s fur trading post! The post grew to trade with the First Nations of the West Coast. The trading post grew, evolved, and influenced history in many ways, eventually leading to the creation of the colony of British Columbia. A little history lesson for you! You can visit the Fort itself and learn all about our country’s rich heritage, Or you can spend the day browsing the many unique shops the Village has to offer! The area boosts a number of amazing wineries, restaurants, and parks. The Fort to Fort trail is a gorgeous walk!

Back to the Cranberry festival! We saw many interesting offerings from local artists, bakers, crafters, florists, etc.






Emma tried her hand at Sugaring off.. A Canadian tradition of pouring hot maple syrup on fresh snow and rolling it on a stick to form a yummy treat!



We decided to take on the issue of lunch by visiting some of the food trucks and sharing a bucket of donuts. We aren’t proud of it, but it happened 😉






Other then the food we saw some giant pumpkins, a giant beaver and just enjoyed browsing and our afternoon together. We walked away with a few purchases and some fun memories! If you’re ever in the area I highly suggested checking out Fort Langley as it is a beautiful little village!

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving and enjoys their time with family and friends.






Alexandra Bridge Provincial Park

On our way home from our last Camping adventure Kevin and I discovered an interesting attraction on one of my many requested pee breaks!!

I never paid much attention to Bridges to be honest with you until I married into the McGavin clan. Kevin’s dad is a bridge builder you see, So I’ve had my eyes opened to the design and building process and find it quite intriguing. I definitely see the beauty in bridges I was oblivious to before. I knew when we saw the sign for Alexandra Bridge we needed to check it out.

Alexandra bridge is nestled on the outskirt of Alexandra provincial park, located about 40 kilometers North of Hope BC and 2 kilometers North of Spuzzum BC on the Trans Canada hwy.

Alexandra Bridge Provincial Park is a small park dedicated to the site of the original Cariboo Wagon Road bridge over the Fraser River. The park was opened in 1984. This site has been home to a number of crossing over the Fraser River but the current bridge was built in 1926. It is no longer utilized by traffic but remains as an amazing step back in time.




The suspension bridge itself can be accessed on foot by following a path from the parks parking lot. The path itself is in fact a portion of the old highway. It is about a 10 minute easy walk to the bridge. The bridge and portion of the old highway that make up the path have not been used by vehicle traffic since 1964, when the new bridge and road were completed slightly up stream.


The bridge is an amazing sight. An instant step back in time. The presence of the bridge over the mighty river and surrounded by mountains felt home to an almost surreal feeling of powerful yet deserted and creepy. Almost a lost in plain sight sort of experience.

The bridge deck is interesting because it is grate style and you can see through it down to the river. As noted in the first photo of the lady waiting for her family to cross, many people can’t seem to bring themselves to cross the span. Muffin didn’t seem to be phased but then again I carried her across! The views are spectacular and experiencing a part of our local heritage is always an enlightening experience.


I highly suggest a quick stop at this beautiful bridge and park if you ever travel through the Fraser Canyon. It’s truly breathtaking.


Rustic Camping At Blue Lake Resort

Despite popular believe amongst my friends I am in fact a country girl at heart! I grew up on a farm and dirt & mud don’t phase me. Of course I don’t deny enjoying the finer things in life like my Lululemon collection, white tipped gel nails, pedicures, wine, and fancy hotel stays on our vacations! This however doesn’t mean I don’t know how to camp! I can and have stayed in a tent on many adventures. This past weekend Kevin and I decided to sneak away for a little rustic camping experience of our own!!

On Thursday afternoon we packed up Kiana (yes our car has a name, don’t judge) and headed up to Boston Bar BC.

As you can see Muffin and I were very pleased by this!!! After a brief stop at our favorite diner in Hope and a couple hours of driving we arrived at Blue lake resort and checked into their Eco cabin!!!


The Eco cabin doesn’t have a whole lot of visual appeal but what it lacks in that department it makes up for in privacy and amazing mountain views!!


The interior of cabin is much less rustic and I was intrigued to know that all the building materials in this cabin were reused from other projects! Of course there is no power or running water, so city girls need not apply! Inside the cabin was a cozy bed, dining table, futon, wood stove and dishes for two!! Oh and a composting toilet on the covered deck! Very handy if you want to avoid the 1/3 km walk to get to the actual bathroom at the general store and the 1/3 km walk back to the cabin!!!




Once we unpacked and set up our temporary weekend home we trekked down to the lake. The lake is gorgeous and was the perfect temperature for swimming and relaxing on hot summer days. Apparently the fishing is decent as well.




After our walk we headed back to the cabin to make dinner and watch the sunset. The view off the cabin deck was priceless. The stars were plentiful and Kevin and I sat out there for hours talking. Unfortunately the area is under a campfire ban but we found other ways to pass the time!!



I will be honest with you and tell you the Eco cabin isn’t for the faint of heart! It is located at the opposite end of the resort from everything else. Privacy aplenty! Meaning more wildlife, more darkness, and more unidentifiable noises!! Oh and bats!!! The whole weekend was insanely hot and I spent a good portion of the time in a bra or bathing suit. I learned quickly that if you sport your super sexy headlamp bats will swoop at you on the deck to catch the Mosquitos the light attracts! This in turn leads to panic.

I should also tell you that the abundant wildlife includes a super cute pack rat that likes to work all night as soon as the lights go down! By work I mean make a lot of noise running through the walls and roof of the cabin. I was in panic mode for a few hours thinking there were critters inside with us but I learned thanks to my spy skills the cabin was in fact wildlife free. Well unless you count Muffin as ferocious wildlife.

But seriously I can tell you nothing except a few bees got inside the cabin with us. I can tell you this because I left a snack out for any visitors and it wasn’t touched all weekend!! Our covered deck was another story!! Of course it is doorless so it’s pretty much free territory! We had a lizard visit us while we ate lunch and later in the evening the worlds biggest beetle.

20130812-181437.jpg It was indeed an adventure!

The resort boasts some amazing walks and hikes. We took in the sights of the beautiful waterfall hike and the other easier trails before conquering the big mountain hike!





20130812-182224.jpg On our first hike we discovered the area is home to millions of tiny frogs and snakes. The frogs amused me for hours.


My favorite adventure of the trip was the hike up to the lookout point high above the lake. The hike itself is fairly intense and quite an elevation gain but well worth it. It proved to be a great workout in the midday heat. The view at the top is rewarding and stunning. It really puts into perspective how small and insignificant we are in comparison to the vastness of the mountains.








Once we were back on flat ground we spent most of our day in the lake. The swim out docks provided hours of tanning and relaxation. The lake was amazing. The views were breath taking and the quiet time alone with my husband was perfection. I was thankful for every minute.






In all it was a fantastic weekend. The resort itself has many other less rustic cabins and a large lodge, all of which looked appealing on the outside. They also have many camper/ tenting sites. They offer boat rentals, have shower/ laundry facilities and a well stocked store incase you forget something. The resort has a few areas that could use some TLC but it is a work in progress and I’d definitely return! The staff were all very friendly and helpful. That atmosphere among the campers was upbeat and everyone seemed happy to interact with everyone else.
It isn’t a five star hotel my friends but it is a great little resort with a homey feeling and lots to see and do!

I can honestly tell you I have really realized a lot about who I am and about my life since I’ve gotten sick and watched my brothers health fail. I think what’s hit me the most is the realization that if you can do it now, do it now because tomorrow you might not have that luxury!!! Whether its staying in a rustic cabin, conquering a fear, swimming halfway across a lake or hiking up a mountain… Do it while you can in case the day comes you can’t.


Johnson Lake BC

Simply stunning!

Kevin and I spent last week in paradise. No cell phone, no Internet, no worries. I have travelled all through Canada from coast to coast and a good portion of the USA and I can whole heartedly tell you Johnson lake is the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen. The blue green lakes took my breath away.




We stayed at Johnson lake Resort and couldn’t be more pleased with our cabins. Jim and Barb, the owners of the resort along with Leslie the caretaker are simply amazing hosts. They made sure we had everything we could need for a stress free, fun, relaxing week.

We spent the first night in a tiny, charming rustic cabin. Very much “roughing it” for me. I giggle because even this rustic cabin wasn’t roughing it in this gorgeous, well laid out resort.


For the first night Kevin got to play outdoors man and walk me to the bathhouse in the dark and make sure the lantern was near by so I could sleep soundly. He barbecued us some burgers while I made salads and we enjoyed our meal on our little deck.

After dinner we went for a walk and I spent some time feeding my new chipmunk friends before heading to the communal campfire.



One of the features of the resort is the communal campfire for the cabins. It was a neat feature and a fun way to get to know your temporary vacation neighbors! It worked as expected because Kevin and I came home from our week with a handful of new local friends and actually plan on Vacationing with them next summer!!!




After our night in the rustic cabin we moved into what was jokingly referred to as the “chateau” for the remainder of our trip.

20130710-130514.jpg Even the owners teased us about the two of us taking the biggest cabin at the resort. I have needs folks ;). Apparently I need enough space for eight people. It was worth every penny. The cabin was amazing. I could have happily lived there!! It had two bedrooms, full kitchen, bathroom, living room area, dining area, fire place and a covered patio. Plus the view of the lake was gorgeous!! We also had our own fire pit which made Kevin happy!





Once we got moved into our castle cabin we really felt vacation mode take over. The week was spent swimming, hiking, reading, relaxing, hanging out with new friends and generally soaking up the perfection we were surrounded with.









The weather was perfect and thankfully not as hot as the forecast had called for! The only part I didn’t care for where how much the Mosquitos liked me!! As you may have noticed in the photo above, I was dinner! Anyways, We kept ourself well fed with very gourmet meals considering we were “camping”. Kevin made me a s’more every night on the fire and I loved every bite. I’m sure I would have indulged more if it wasn’t for the sugar interance issue.

The water in both Big Johnson and Little Johnson lake is crystal clear making the underwater shoals easy to see. The water was chilly but made for great swimming. I wandered out in the lake for sometime enjoying the sand between my toes while Kev finally got a chance to play photographer with his new DSLR. The color and clarity of the water mesmerized me, watching the fish while sitting on the dock was so fun. We had our new friends over one night for card games and drinks aka camping chsos!! We even had a camping movie night! Kevin made us popcorn and we watched a movie on my Tablet while cuddled under blankets! Perfection.




We did some hiking, enjoyed some amazing views.



The resort is about an hour and a half outside Kamloops, near Barrier BC. The road I to the resort is well maintained and accessible by car, truck, RV, etc. I highly suggest checkin out this amazing hidden jewel in the BC Interior!!






Johnson Lake Resort ~The Caribbean Of The North

PS don’t forget to ask Jim to tell you the Johnson lake fishing tale and to keep and eye out for the bones 😉

Krause Berry Farms

Krause Berry Farms has to be one of my favorite places to visit locally. Every summer we go to pick plump red strawberries fresh from the fields and enjoy the tastes, sounds, and sights of this beautiful family owned farm! Yesterday my husband and I were lucky enough to be invited to the friends and family event they held to show case their brand new Estate winery.

Our visit started out with an amazing helicopter flight over Langley. Sky Helicopters took us on an amazing fight, I’d never been in a helicopter before and I have to admit it was amazing. Our pilot Matt was great, He had a fun sense of humor and made me feel very comfortable. It was a neat way to see the farmlands at Krause, the views of Langley and the Fraser river were spectacular!






Sky Helicopters will apparently be offering flights out of Krause berry farm some weekends this summer for a low cost. I suggest you check it out if you get the chance. It truly is a spectacular experience.

Once we were back on the ground we headed inside to start our sampling! First we were greeted with fresh baked apple pie, homemade donuts with strawberry or blueberry frosting, tea, coffee, and juice!

Krause is a sweet tooth haven. They make and serve an amazing assortment of sweet treats, from fudge, pies and cookies to fresh berry milkshakes. They also sell fresh baked buns and breads as well as an assortment of jams, sauces, cheese, eggs and of course in season berries! They have a huge market on premises with all sorts of amazing offerings and gift items.

If sweets aren’t your thing you can also order many lunch items including, soup and corn pizza on the Porch and enjoy a farm fresh lunch on a real working farm.

After our donuts were down we headed over to the winery for the real reason we were there! Fruit wine!!! I am a huge advocate of eating locally and eating healthy… I guess now is a good time for me to admit my love if local wines as well.

The new winery is amazing. It is absolutely gorgeous. They have gone with a western theme and nothing was over looked in the design. If you visit be sure to look up because the ceiling is very pretty.







The wine we tasted is all made on site from their own or locally sourced fruit. The apple wine was my favorite, but the raspberry, blueberry, and sparkling wines all tasted delicious as well. We came home with a bottle of Raspberry wine and of course a bottle of the Apple. I will be back for the sparkling wine once it’s available for sale.

Once our tasting was completed I chatted with Alf, the owner of the farm briefly and then retreated to the beautiful patio to nibble on some snacks and of course sip another glass of wine.



The farm is absolutely beautiful. The fruit when in season is so much fun to venture into the fields and pick yourself. It is the perfect place to take kids, complete with play area. Lots to see and do for sure. The new winery just offers that much more to an already great place.