Vancouver to Penticton by Air 090424

Left Britt Apr 23, enjoyed some spicy Vietnamese food with Andrew, and left QYYZ next day in a Boeing 767 to QYVR with my travel companion, Sister Gil.  Long sleepy trip.  Four seats ahead a little Chocolate Lab was seated under its blind mistress.  On occasion cabin staff would take the little gal for a stroll around the airplane.  Upon its return the doggie would get very excited and affectionate before calmly returning to its position.  Gil and I chatted with the owner in the VR terminal.  Nice event.

Rear starboard window seat in a Dash 8 from Vancouver (Still Sea Island?) to Penticton to get this as we banked to the left just after take-off towards the West.

That is wreck beach and Point Grey, home of UBC, just over the radome.


As we continued our turn towards the Southwest we saw Roberts Bank Superport, capable of handling the largest of container ships.  To the left is Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal. In the distance are the Gulf Islands and Vancouver Island.


Roberts Bank was built in the 1960s to export coal from the Crowsnest Pass area to Asia.  It was upgraded to a very large container terminal 10 years ago and is now undergoing further expansion.  The cranes on the left side make this port one of the largest and busiest container ports in North America.  The one coal carrier at the end of the dock is being filled by a conveyance from the the coal cars parked along the causeway.

As we turned westward, flying just north of the 49th parallel, Mt Baker poked out through the light deck of clouds.


This volcanic cone is almost 11,000 ft high and still fumes smelly gasses.   Heaviest snowfall of  the Pacific Northwest ski area – almost 100 ft of snow/season.

Between Chilliwack and Hope I got a teleshot of this mountain:


I am pretty sure that it is Mt Slesse as it is in Canada and was about 6 minutes later than abeam Mt Baker.  I remember Slesse well it is was the site of a 1956 (I was in Grade 13) crash of a TCA Northstar carrying most of the Winnipeg Blue Bomber and Saskatchewan Roughrider football teams home after a game in Vancouver.  It took some time to find the wreck as the weather was bad and this mountain was no place to be wandering around on during snowstorms.  The crash site is now a Reserve.

Further West we flew over Princeton, home of Copper Mountain, a mine that has been operating on and off since 1923. Granby, Newmont, Cassiar, Similco, Copper Mountain have been players.  It is closed now but there is the usual talk of reopening.


Highway 3 is to the right to the deep valley (in the shadow).  Sun is in the southwest as it is around 5 pm local.

A little later we flew a few miles to the north of Apex Mountain Ski area.  You can see the village in the bottom left.  A good ski hill with a couple thousand feet of vertical drop from the tree line.


After landing at Penticton Airport I turned to take a pic of  the family orchard, perched up across the valley floor on Valleyview Rd.  That is the farmhouse and implement shed on the right.  The orchard is on two benches.  Nowadays apples on the upper, with some apples, pears, and cherries on the bottom.  No more peaches and apricots except around the house.  Too much work.


Next morning, 8:30 Eastern time, 5:30 Pacific time, this view of Penticton from our patio:


This is what it looks like  during the day:


And this is what snow-covered Apex Mtn looks like from the driveway:


Yes, that is a forest fire scar to the left of Apex and that is the 1980 Eagle poised and ready to go.)

The orchard is patrolled by this fellow ….


… who is on the prowl for these rodents, Marmots as  they are now called.  We used to call them groundhogs.


This brought back  memories when I used to climb up on the tool shed to watch airplanes at Penticton airport.


It was fun and a good break from farm work.

Over the next few days I was put to work, mainly pruning peach trees and grapes around the house.

“Before” picture of a young “Vee” peach tree.


Pruner posing for the camera:


And now the “After” picture of the tree following its haircut.


In spite of all the hard work I still managed to get some time to get “flower” photos:

Apricot branch:


Up close:


Close-up of a Walnut branch and emerging buds:


It took me a while to find out what the construction is of Juglans.  Here is the answer:


It is quite special to be able to study many of these old botanical drawings on the internet.

I bribed the owner of a motel with a bottle of wine to use a room for a couple of hours …… to connect to the internet.

I still have some  pics in my camera  that I haven’t downloaded yet.  So they will probably be included in my next missive…. probably from Calgary.

Here are the pics:

These always remind me of a well known A E Housman poem:



The poem:

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my three score years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

Even though I am hitting “my three score years and ten” I still remember the Shropshire Lad enjoying the woodland ride at springtime.

I am leaving for Calgary tomorrow, May 1, morning.  Probably staying in Cranbrook — 500 km east of Penticton on Hwy 3.  Then the plan is to drive the remaining 400 km to Calgary via Radium and Banff.  Always a nice trip.

Here is the route: Penticton Hwy 97 Osoyoos Hwy3 Castlegar Hwy3  Cranbrook.  (US border at bottom of image.)


At Cranbrook I will head north on Hwy 93 to Radium Hot Springs then Hwy 93, Hwy 1 to Banff, Canmore, Calgary.


Both segments of this trip are always spectacular and will be a good test for the “new” Eagle…. and its driver!

Now it is off to pack the 1980 Eagle Sport Station Wagon.

Next instalment: 090501  Penticton to Cranbrook

Watch for it!

At the beginning…

…. there was a page full of geeky stuff inviting me to play.  So I am starting.  Hopefully this will relieve my friends of  those lengthy emails complete with endless photos.

Now, all that we need is for me to learn how to use this wonderful machinery.

First an image….

090424 in Penticton BC

090424 in Penticton BC

Now, I wonder if I can take a piece of email and post it here….hmmm.  Lets try.
This is near Okanagan Falls, showing what the landscape is like without irrigation from mountain reservoirs:

Okanagan spring flora

Okanagan spring flora

The trees are “Bull Pine”  a variant of  the Ponderosa Pine that grows all along the Interior Plateau of Western North America from BC to Mexico.  The grey plants are Antelope Bush.  You can also see the brunch grass and the occasional rabbbit bush that grows in this zone.  The brilliant yellow flowers are Sunflowers, now intensely studied as a key plant in the theories of hybridization.

Now it’s time to try to upload two images at once.  How about these two:

Mountain sheep at Radium Hot Springs

Mountain sheep at Radium Hot Springs

Couldn’t get two images that were separated in a file.  Lets try several in a file….

Can’t seem to upload a batch of images…. yet.  I’ll have to study more to find how to do that.

This is enough for my first attempt.

Lets Publish and hear from the critics!


(I just used “Update Post” to add this little PS)