Monday, July 15, 2019

North Thompson River ~ Chinook Cove ~ Barriere, BC

Kamloops, BC and the surrounding area have much to offer.  We decided we would like to enjoy our hometown area more and so we planned a two day RV stay with friends up the North Thompson Valley in Barriere, BC.  Our RV trips are usually much longer but with so much here to see, why not spend time in the comfort of our RV.  Our mini holiday begins.

Chinook Cove, Barriere, BC
We stayed at Chinook Cove Golf and RV.  The golf course is absolutely beautiful.  The course is so well kept and the weather, although we had nighttime showers, was perfect with sunshine during the days.  Perfect RV’ing and golfing weather.  I enjoyed the scenery and the ride around the golf course more than I did the golfing, lol.  This is a view of the flat half, wait till you see the next half!  The hills and valleys aren’t easy to see in these photos but they were there!

Chinook Cove Golf and RV Park
I am not a very accomplished golfer, although I have swung those clubs a zillion times at many golf balls, but this was the most intimidating golf course I have ever been on.  I likely only golfed about three of the nine holes, rather than lose the pretty golf balls I have!  I would suggest that anyone going might want to carry extra golf balls with them.  The fellas lost a few of them on our round.

RV Park at Chinook Cove
The RV Park is not large with 18 great spots and nice facilities, as well.  It is only a 45 minute drive from our home in Kamloops and makes for a good place to spend a few days, especially for those who enjoy a challenging round of golf. 

Green hills on the Yellowhead Hwy
These lush green hills are slightly different than the sage hills we have closer to Kamloops but we have still not reached our dry days of summer yet, so the green will not stay so lush, I’m sure.  No drought but we’ve had them in the past.  This area is part of the McLure Fire in 2003 that destroyed over 65 thousand acres.  The spikey outline at the top of these hills are what is left of the trees that burned.

North Thompson River
Droughts can be a danger with fire season as well as lightening, arson and human carelessness, which was the cause of this 2003 fire.  Thankfully, much of the terrain has new growth since that time and creates a much nicer sight than it did back then, it was a sad sight to see.  The North Thompson River weaves its way through the valley and creates some beautiful scenery.

Ranch land at McLure, BC
Being a passenger in the truck definitely allows me to see more and usually with my camera ready.  I had hoped I would get the rainbow showing under the irrigation sprinkler and there it is. Takes little to excite me for photos. lol Much of Kamloops and area is ranching country and we see many horses on this part of the North Thompson Valley. 

Young buck
Timing was good for me with my camera as well as for this young buck as he ran across the busy highway.  Not all wildlife are this lucky.  This wouldn’t be an unusual sight so hopefully most drivers would be watchful for them. 

Ranching on Westsyde Road
We had been following the Yellowhead Highway north from Kamloops on the east side of the North Thompson River to Barriere and today we are on the Westsyde Road on the west side of the River.  The valley width is not large and as on the Yellowhead, this road rarely loses sight of the river.  Peaceful days of summer with horses grazing in the field are such a calming sight to see.

Whispering Pines 

Our drive took us as far as Whispering Pines when Mother Nature decided to rain on this off road racing fun.  These facilities host numerous events throughout the summer but hopefully most of them would happen on a warm summer day.

There are many things going on during our summer months but we hope to get out and enjoy some more of our local areas before the summer ends.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Canada Day ~ 2019 ~ Kamloops, BC

Canada Day is always a special day for us Canadians and has become a bigger celebration in Kamloops at Riverside Park over the years.  It attracts thousands of us that come to see the artists of the area and the food vendors as well as plenty of entertainment.

Group Drum Roll
We arrived just as the drumming began.  It was a Guinness World Record attempt with multicultural drummers performing.  They attempted at “Most Nationalities in a Simultaneous Drum Circle” last year but didn’t make it so the hope was to be successful to break the record for “Largest Group Drum Roll” this year.  I’ve heard no news on that yet.  They passed out small drums for the spectators to join in, grandson using one in corner of photo. 

Crowds and more crowds
This well shaded park was packed with vendors and those who came to enjoy the day.  Riverside Park has been the centre of summer activities for so many years but not many the size of this one.  It does lead to parking difficulties but if one is willing to walk, spots can be found.  The City of Kamloops offers free bus service for the day so that sure simplifies things for those who wish to use them.  

Kids bouncy castle fun

There is a nice playground for the youngsters in the park but for this special day, they offer plenty of extras like this bouncy castle shown here.  No shortage of lineups of kids waiting to get into it and have their turn at fun.  Patience applies in several areas of the Park today, lineups are long. 

Kamloops Lawn Bowling
Lawn bowling has had this area in Riverside here for many years.  As a matter of fact, these greens were ready for play in 1923!  The Kamloops Lawn Bowling Club was formed the year before and has been active ever since, but with some changes in rules, as women were only allowed to use the green when men were not back then.  There are tournaments for those who enjoy the competition of lawn bowling but social bowling is happening with no set teams, just to have fun with those who show up on any day. 

A Special Gift
There were dozens of very talented artists with booths displaying their talents in the Park.  They sell their jewelry, knitted goods, pottery, paintings, woodworks, face painting….. the list could go on.  There was one booth that especially caught my attention and that was “A Special Gift”.  These ladies plus one other work all year round producing these amazing quilts and a never ending list of other items.  

Dressed for the occasion
So many visitors wore red clothes of some sort and accessories of red, whether flags or other things, but these ones definitely caught my attention.

Thompson River beach at Riverside Park
Riverside Park is right on the Thompson River and has always been a popular swimming area, too.  The day was still early but with the forecast to reach 30c (86f), the beach would soon be full of more swimmers, to be sure.  Then they can move onto the food vendors, which offers Multicultural Society foods from many different cultural groups that represent Kamloops residents, as well. 

Kamloops Mounted Patrol
Rick Wanless (c) has been attending these events and so many others with his horses and team mates since 1992 as the Kamloops Mounted Patrol and they still draw plenty of attention wherever they go.  Great to see Mr. Wanless still a part of this great Patrol team.  To learn more of the Patrol, click here.

Riverside Park on Canada Day
FolkFest lineups of local and regional cultural performers promotes diversity in dance, music, style and language on the stage of the Rotary Bandshell and were being enjoyed by this large audience.  Sights of food vendors, all vendors and more around Riverside Park.  Music in the Park kicked off July 1 evening with classic rock band Shattered Blue and wow, were they good!  Lead singer had an AMAZING voice, scheduled to play again July 19th.  One of the best free concerts you may see but the whole lineup looks great. 

View from the top of overpass walk

The cap off for the whole evening was the fantastic fireworks, but no photos for it, never been good at night shots, lol.  We’d been down to the festivities twice and just weren’t going for a third visit, too late for us old folks.  Sorry we missed it but we heard from several that it was incredible.
There are more photos of Riverside Park on my blog showing quieter times.  Click here to see that.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Alley Murals ~ Art ~ Kamloops, BC

It has been awhile since we’ve taken a walk through the downtown alleys to have a look at the new murals that have been done since our last visit there.  There were several new ones and some are more than amazing to view.

History with trains

Alex Moir-Porteous was the lead artist, with a crew of Ruby Kasmito, Joy West-Collazzi and Cali Miller.  Volunteers who also helped were Alonzo, Ben Jaarsma and Dawn Marie Duncan.  The train has a long history in Kamloops and the Kamloops Heritage Rail still carries on the old tradition, including a hold-up by the old Billy Miner gang which originally happened in 1906.

Art Gallery

This mural was done in 2015 and sponsored by the K.C.B.I.A. as are many of the others.  I don’t have particulars on that but as the numbers have grown, the interest has grown as has the talents we see.  The artist and assistants on this one are Ken Wells, Britanee Neufeld and Roy Morrison. 

Colorful & Bright

This cleverly uses the downward pipes as palm tree trunks.  Other than a ‘Ksymbol’ at the bottom of these murals, I did not know the artist.  I wish to give credit to the talents who display their work so after doing some searching, found the artist.  Both of these are done by Kelly Wright.

City Street

This mural has so much in it to see.  Called the “Wheel in the Sky”, starring the ‘Great Architect’ has included different names for his helpers as part of the cinema attraction.  Alex Moir-Porteous is the artist who created this.  

Sax Player

This incredible mural was done by Zack Abney.  Being artwork in the alley means there is no way to get away from garbage bins that we have to see but I’d lose almost half of the photo if I were to crop them out.  So we see it as it is, and the magic of the painter will keep your eyes on the mural.

Peace and Love

Artist Ken Wells signifies the Old Mystic sending out flowers with his doves to share peace and love.  The birdcage actually surrounds a window, such a good placement of it.  This does remind me of a visit to Hong Kong when a walk around the park you will see many senior men with their birdcages with birds hanging in the trees as they sit and visit with one another.  If memory serves me right, they were budgies and parakeets, though, no doves. 

Leland Hotel

Evan Christian created this mural in 2017.  It brings back historical memories of the old Leland Hotel with brightness.  It was built in 1905 and had 75 years to create a colorful history, sadly it burnt down in 1980. 

Kelly Olynyk

This one is of Kelly Olynyk and slightly off the track of the alley locations but I had to include it.  It is at Thompson Rivers University by the basketball gymnasium.  Kelly played basketball during his high school years in Kamloops and eventually went on to bigger and better things, now playing for the NBA. Bill Frymire is the artist who created this mural that is a strong resemblance to Kelly Olynyk.

Lansdowne Parkade

The City of Kamloops commissioned Bill Frymire to create this mesh image on the Lansdowne Parkade.  It wraps around both sides and the front offering a brilliant colorful sight and depending on where you stand, the colors can vary.  It is unlike anything I’ve seen before and am not quite sure what it might be technically called but it is art and it is amazing.  

Work up close

It has 90,000 brushed steel tiles, each one representing the population of Kamloops.  Most of the tiles are stationary but the one wave sweeping the breadth of it has left the tiles fluttering that allows them to shimmer even more in the breeze.

We then met a couple of visitors from Australia who were enjoying a solo tour of the murals with a mural map in hand.  We had a nice chat about the newest mural before we went on our way. The Tourist Centre or City of Kamloops should have the maps, as well as many who carry tourist brochures.

To view other murals I posted in 2016, click here.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Summertime ~ Kamloops, BC

The first day of summer arrived on a Friday leading into a week of summer activities.  We wait for this day with great anticipation as we expect summer weather to be a constant sunny and warm.  That may be our normal summertime but it just doesn’t always happen.  We had a bit of Spring overlap.

He scores!
For the most part, the soccer tournament games were played between the weekend showers.  We only went to two of the games, one on each weekend day, and got rain neither one but there were scattered showers happening.  We did see our youngest grandson make a special goal, his very first!  I would have sat in the rain to see that. 

Westsyde Horse Show
Westsyde Park hosted a horse show on Sunday.  Several showed their horses by walking around the outside arena, being judged for things I would not have any idea about.  They were so enjoyable to watch, but what horse isn’t, especially when being ridden by someone who knows what they are doing. 

Mental Health Bike Ride
We saw many many bikes riding the Westsyde Road before they headed down to ride on the dyke that passes Westsyde Centennial Park.  They were supporting bringing mental health into the open.  The total ride was 25 km long, so good for all and thanks to those who participated for this worthy cause.

Entertaining Emu
The Little Farmer’s Zoo adjacent to Westsyde Park never lacks for some animal entertainment.  So many people enjoy watching the antics, especially of the goats, they do seem to know to perform.  I think my favorite is the Emu, who seemed as interested in my camera as I was in him.  He did give it a peck once, as his long neck gives him a long reach, but I think he was hoping for an edible.

Little Farmers Zoo
Little Farmer’s Zoo offers machines to purchase appropriate food for the animals to avoid feeding them food scraps that may do them harm.  Feed is very inexpensive and will definitely get the animals to the fence once they know you have something for them.  All animals are behind the fence but petting can still be accomplished for some.

TRU basketball
This basketball court is at Thompson Rivers University and has attracted several young players on this morning.  As regular classes are over for the year, I suspect these kids could be here for fun, practice or lessons?

Deer attending University
We see a local visitor on the grass of TRU enjoying a lunchtime snack.  She’s alone here and with all the construction going on at the campus I am surprised to see her.  This campus has grown.

McArthur Park Skateboarding
Kamloops has several skateboarding parks, and rarely are they empty but with summertime here, they will likely keep pretty busy.  This one is located at McArthur Island.

Brock Pool
This is a small group of swimmers at the Brock Pool compared to shortly after.  There were 5 school buses arrive in the parking lot while those who came on them had swimming or picnicking in the park.  Brock Park includes a playground area, swimming pool and tennis courts, as well as an inside ice arena.  Great place for any summer day, especially ones like this.

Mt. Paul and North Thompson River

What could be prettier that Mt. Paul and Mt. Peter reflected in the North Thompson River, which is great for kayaking, and is lined with lush green bushes and trees.  This pathway offers a nice walk along Schubert Drive on the NorthShore.

So many things to do in summertime Kamloops, an outdoor paradise.  Hopefully everyone has a safe and fun summer ahead of them.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Springtime in Kamloops, BC

The Easter Bunny has come and gone today and with the sun shining so nicely, we decided to go for a drive to capture some spring shots of Kamloops.  It didn’t take long and that cloud moved in and stole the sunshine!  Not to be discouraged by this, as none of the subjects were, I took the photos anyway.

Baseball tournament
Kamloops is the Tournament Capital of Canada and McArthur Park is a great sport location that has several fields for many different kinds of sports.  Today is a sure sign of spring when there are some baseball tournaments going on at the park.  The parking lot is full at the Stadium for that game and there are several filled chairs lining the road to watch this one.

McArthur Island Slough
McArthur Park is an island surrounded by the McArthur Park Slough and is the home of so many waterfowl.  At this time of year, when the water level is low, the slough has limited water and in places it has none.  This does not seem to matter to the ducks as they are congregated close to the footbridge where there is some water enjoying the quiet times.

Boat launch at the slough
This is the Thompson River’s mouth of the slough which houses the boat launch, a very busy place in the summer but at this point in time, getting ready for goslings and ducks to hatch as they did at this time last year.  They may be waiting for this wet chillier weather to leave before the babies arrive, Mother Nature’s good planning!

Quiet view of Kamloops
This view offers very little movement at this time of year.  Other than movement in the river as it slowly rises from the rain and snow melts, there are a couple of dogs on the river’s bank retrieving from the river, doing one thing that so many dogs love to do and enjoying themselves, no matter what the weather is.

Bench awaits a visitor
The new growth has just begun to spring out on the trees that line the river.  Very few blossoms have been seen yet but as they say, “April showers brings May flowers” so we’ll just have to wait a bit more time to see the blossoms appear on other trees.   This lonely bench will have more visitors soon.

A fallen tree
This tree once stood on the bank but likely due to high waters, the edge gave away and the tree fell, but with it took the roots, allowing it to stay alive.  These new leaves can attest to that.  Time will tell if it can continue to survive but so far, so good.

Curious Marmot
Look who I found!  As I’d walked above the river’s edge, I’d been looking for any sign of marmots as they live in their tunnel homes along the banks at the park.  I’d seen nothing and as much as I didn’t expect much, I was sure they didn’t relocate during the winter.  Then this one pops his head out and sits right in front of his home!  We had a nice little chat, his part silent but I'm sure I ‘heard’ his thoughts!

Hungry marmot
I noticed several carrots scraps that someone had fed them, and tossed them toward him trying not to scare him away.  Each one would come close but bounce away, and he was watching it all with interest.  I finally decided I would have to get closer in order to reach the carrot he seemed to have his eye on and once I got that close, he dove back into his home.  I gave it a toss and it hit the opening and rolled down!  Bet he was happy to have dinner delivered!

McDonald Park
This is MacDonald Park, a smaller neighborhood park on the North shore with lots of playground entertainment for the young ones.  There are several here visiting in spite of the weather and by the sounds we hear, they are enjoying themselves.  We took our Maggie for a walk and she was happily greeted by Oscar, a very friendly young dog looking to make her acquaintance.  Of course, Maggie doesn’t consider herself a dog so one sniff was enough! lol

Happy Easter to all!