Merritt, Vernon, Squamish, Capilano trail, Whistler,…

Part one
Not necessarilly in this order but something like that.
On our way from Tofino to Vancouver, after a big storm, mountain pass was still covered in snow and it was snowing all the way from Pacific Rim Visitor Centre crossroad to Qualicum beach. Some parts were so difficult that San needed to slow down and keep a distance between us and vehicle in front of us – it was obvious that some of them still had summer tires :faint: No need to mention how dangerous that could be. But I must mention one thing: San is a great driver!!! Despite having difficult weather conditions and spending long time behind the wheel, she was focused and I couldn`t feel a single second of insecurity. I am not much of a driver (the fact that I will have to remedy soon) but I felt so safe like I was driving myself :whistle: ๐Ÿ˜†
If we forget taking one wrong turn in Nanaimo when we headed toward ferry terminal. I am sorry San, I needed to mention that ๐Ÿ˜†
They`ve repeated on the radio that storm made sea almost impossible to sail and that several ferries were cancelled and delayed. Ferry we took was delayed but a sea was not THAT rough. Maybe a bit at the beginning but after that it was just as usual. Or what I think is usual. We were already too tired from a whole day trip, all we could think was only a hot shower and bed. Amenities of civilisation ๐Ÿ˜›
The very next day we were in a car again. This time heading north-east toward Merritt, Salmon Arm and Vernon. To meet friends and family. Weather was promising – cloudy but without dangerous storms. Snow on the mountain pass, of course, but the rest of it was mostly dry. This part of BC was having dry winter this year. This is what Merritt looked like – a view from a hill just above the city.

Not even close to what my friends were telling me Canadian winter will look like – back then it was only melting snow and mud. Tomorrow, closer to Kamloops it was even drier – not a single snowflake on the ground. But San told me it was not that unusual. This part of BC is always dry and could be very hot in summer.

Thompson river near Kamloops
To say the truth, there was some snow in center of Kamloops but not more than in Merrit or Vernon.
Vernon was the last stage of our trip. With population of about 35000 people, Vernon is the largest city in North Okanagan Regional District. Area was inhabited by Interior Salish people who were overrun by fur traders at the beginning of 19th century. Vernon was formed around Swan lake and after a gold was discovered in nearby creeks, miners and cattle farmers made its growth faster. City of Vernon was incorporated in 1892. During both World Wars, it was a place where military training camps for Canadian army were organized. Also, during WWI, internment camps for Ukrainian Canadians was formed in what is today site of W.L Seaton Secondary School; during WWII a camp for people of Japanese descent (mostly from Vancouver) was in the area.
Today, Vernon looks like sleepy quiet town surrounded by hills, with its flat surface lakes: Okanagan, Kalamalka and Swan.

Okanagan lake near Vernon, early in the morning
Our trip back to Vancouver, with few occassional stops, presented no unexpected events. There was a little snow on the way back to Merrit and it was snowing on the mountain pass, of course. But weather was sunny and cold most of the way. I saw my first "real" coyote. Unfortunately it was too far to make a decent photo. And you know them – too careful to let you come closer. And I saw a big deer. And a lot of cattle, enjoying cold sun, sniffing the air. Another storm was on its way but it was still quiet.
But eagles kept their sentinel eyes on us…

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52 Responses to Merritt, Vernon, Squamish, Capilano trail, Whistler,…

  1. Suntana says:

    So, San is a great driver and very focused, Eh?Right. Y'all were probably both bobbing your heads to the radio blaring::sing: I wanna Rock & Roll all night and party everyday.I wanna Rock & Roll all night and party everyday.:sing: I love Rock & Roll.So put another dime in the jukebox, baby.I love Rock & Roll.So come and take your time and dance with me. :headbang:Darko, I sure hope you gave San at least a stack of pancakes what with all that BUTTER you were giving her. Those Pics look like right out of Western movies.I guess you'll feel at home since you're a Western movies Fan, right?

  2. Suntana says:

    Probably by this time next year, Darko will have gone from not being much of a driver … to owning and driving a HUGE Double Cab Diesel TRUCK. :eyes: And he will be sporting a beard, Western clothes, Cowboy Boots and Hat like :norris: :headbang:

  3. Stardancer says:

    With every post, it becomes more and more apparent that you were feeling very much at home, Darko.:smile:

  4. spooksister says:

    Great post, Darko :up: It's nice to see what I get to see everyday with fresh eyes :)5 weeks later and the scenery in the Interior of BC still looks the same. We had some snow a couple of weeks ago but the sunshine melted it all away. What a difference from Eastern Canada. :yikes:

  5. sanshan says:

    :furious: I AM an EXCELLENT driver.

  6. Suntana says:

    THERE you go! That Navy Aircraft Carrier-sized Double Cab Silver Dodge Ram Diesel Dually will be Darko's Pride & Joy. However, he might want to go without the Camper Shell so that he can instead hook up a HUGE 5th Wheel Camper Trailer to go camping. The 5th Wheel Camper will be so big that it'll have it's own Mini Dojo in it. :headbang:

  7. Mickeyjoe-Irl says:

    Like thisor thisThey do like their pickups out there.

  8. sanshan says:


  9. Dacotah says:

    I can't read the article. After I posted the comment I can read it. That is what I got coming here from my watch list.

  10. Dacotah says:

    Sure is weird.

  11. gdare says:

    Driving in a van, listening Van the Man on a radio ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  12. sanshan says:

    Actually, I see Darko more of a VW van guy. Well, if Audi made vans then that would be it.

  13. gdare says:

    Originally posted by Suntana:

    So, San is a great driver and very focused, Eh?

    Carlos, as she said: She is an excellent driver!!! :insane: As for the beard and hat…well, I am not sure Chuck Norris would love that, he don`t need someone copying him in his neighbourhood.I will have to think of something more unique :cheers:Star, I like it there, BC is beautiful!Sal, thanks. I like when I hear about my neighbourhood from people who are not from Serbia. San always tell me some things here remind her on China. I guess that`s true :lol:Mick, yes, a lot of people are driving those cars. They are excellent for highways and mountain passes but I`ve told they are expensive cars. I guess this is why some people in Canada have two cars. Small for a city and big one for serious trips :up:San, yes, you are, of course :insane:Carol, it is probably because your browser didn`t load entire page properly. Next time it happens, try to reload it :up:

  14. Dacotah says:

    I will Darko, thanks.

  15. SittingFox says:

    Congrats on the coyote! :DThompson River…I haven't been there for ages. On my first trip to Canada, I took the train from Vancouver to Banff (through Kamloops). I was fascinated by the grasslands. I think it reminded me of Africa. Now it reminds me of Saskatchewan ๐Ÿ˜†

  16. Suntana says:

    WHAT? Darko a VW Van guy?! :yikes: — :no: He probably won't even fit in there.Sooo … is learning how to ride a horse also on the agenda, Darko? Once you master that, you can then move on to riding Bulls at Rodeos. :headbang:

  17. gdare says:

    Adele, I`ve never been in Sakatchewan. Nor in Africa. But I will take your word for that :cheers:Carlos, no, no bulls :insane: But hope to try to learn how to ride horses, though ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  18. Mickeyjoe-Irl says:

    Originally posted by Suntana:

    a HUGE 5th Wheel Camper Trailer to go camping.

    I have a picture of that too. ๐Ÿ˜€โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ :star:The prices on a fully loaded truck an be shocking Darko. And they're not really practical for the city. Terrible mileage as well. โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ โญ :star:Audi don't make vans, unfortunately. This will have to do San.

  19. Suntana says:

    That looks like about my older brother's setup.He has a HUGE 5th Wheel, which he pulls with a Monster Ford F-350 4-Wheel Drive Diesel Truck. He actually had the 2010 model of this truck last year. He said the mileage was pathetic and never seemed to break into the 12 Miles per Gallon range. And I think that was by itself. I think pulling the 5th Wheel, it was no doubt in the single digit MPG range. :insane: Plus, he wanted more power. He had heard that the 2011 model was gonna have more power and better mileage. So, as of about 3 weeks ago, he now has the 2011 model and he IS comfortable with the much better mileage and more power.I tell you something though. To have a truck like that, you better have plenty of MONEY. Cuz the day that it breaks down and it's no longer under warranty, it's gonna take some serious BUCKS to fix that sucker. The Engine Compartment … Wooooooo! You can't even SEE the engine for all the assorted crap covering it. It looks like it'll take a freakin' Certified Diesel Mechanical Magician to fix anything in there, no matter how trivial.

  20. gdare says:

    Mick and Carlos, I saw a lot of those monsters on highways all over BC, that Ford F-350 as well :eyes: I think driving it would feel like driving a truck. Filling it with gas, too :ko:

  21. Mickeyjoe-Irl says:

    A lot, I can't remember the exact number. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  22. gdare says:

    And a price was…?

  23. MirabelaTM says:

    I think women are more careful drivers..and better ๐Ÿ˜€ PS. Beautiful pictures :up:

  24. Mickeyjoe-Irl says:

    I took that picture because that fifth wheel was the biggest rig in the lot. I couldn't believe the size of it.Those weren't even the biggest trucks I saw out in BC. There was a F-650 at a car dealership (unfortunately I didn't have my camera) I went in and asked the price for a laugh :faint:

  25. sanshan says:

    We will NEVER buy one of those gas guzzlers. :knight: Won't need it anyway once we win the lottery and live on a small tropical island. ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. edwardpiercy says:

    Boy it does look dry up there this year. :(I agree about the big rig (i.e. truck). A big ride for a tall man! ๐Ÿ˜€

  27. gdare says:

    Mira :PEd, considering all the rain we had during the first week of my visit, it was way too dry back there behind mountains :left:San, yesh :heart:

  28. Mickeyjoe-Irl says:

    But you will need a car San. ๐Ÿ˜€

  29. gdare says:

    But a small car :whistle: ๐Ÿ˜†

  30. edwardpiercy says:

    It was a joke. For the future, you can just always assume I'm joking. You'll be right 97 percent of the time.

  31. sanshan says:

    Darko can pull me in a rickshaw.

  32. raniakasim says:

    at last u have sent the second part of ur trip , so nice blog and photos especially the second one , tell San i thank her for keeping u safe

  33. gdare says:

    San, I`ve already said you are a good driver :PRania, she knows already :happy:

  34. edwardpiercy says:

    Well I believe that San is a great driver. The expert testimony (Darko) says to that effect. So I think that it cannot be otherwise.

  35. raniakasim says:

    i noticed that ur photos is limited to natural landscape , i haven't seen any photos of folkloric restaurants for example or parks or other places .

  36. gdare says:

    Ed :cheers:Rania, I make photos of places I find interesting – not only speciffic things; unfortunately, I haven`t had enough time to visit and photograph all places I wanted; in time, I hope there will be more opportunities :up:

  37. studio41 says:

    always very informative to read your posts, Darko. but, the pictures are beautiful! love that first one- gorgeous. what a wonderful way to spend the time, you two! what sort of camera are you using?glad you find yourself in good hands, btw. some women can drive! ๐Ÿ˜€

  38. sanshan says:

    Originally posted by studio41:

    some women can drive

    and some men can't drive.

  39. raniakasim says:

    i hope so ๐Ÿ™‚

  40. raniakasim says:

    i hope so ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. gdare says:

    Jill, I am having old cheap Canon A710 IS but I`ve made more than 8000 photographs with it and it`s still making good shots :yes:She is great, I told you ;)San, I can drive but I know you adore it; why would I take it from you :whistle:Rania ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. sanshan says:

    I'm not saying you "can't" drive, just that "some" men can't..translation: are crappy drivers. Why is this cliche about women drivers still around anyway? Young men have more accidents than any other group.

  43. gdare says:

    Cliche? I have no idea what you`re talking about :whistle:

  44. studio41 says:

    Originally posted by gdare:

    still making good shots

    :yes: indeed, it is.Originally posted by gdare:

    She is great, I told you

    yes, you have told us. ๐Ÿ™‚ she is. you guys are perfect for each other.Originally posted by gdare:

    I can drive but I know you adore it; why would I take it from you

    I like best to drive, it is therapeutic. I hate handing over the keys ๐Ÿ˜ฅ (and rarely do, I might add.)

  45. gdare says:

    Originally posted by studio41:

    and rarely do, I might add


  46. studio41 says:


  47. rose-marie says:

    Lots of hills, yet the landscape still looks versatile.Sounds like you've had a great experience :up:.:sst: That "deer" photo… what is it really? :whistle:

  48. gdare says:

    :sst: a deer… :left: :right:

  49. There2ia says:

    Originally posted by sanshan:

    Won't need it anyway once we win the lottery and live on a small tropical island.

    That is the best I have ever heard. I like tropical islands too…Darko…Nice way in describing and great shots… have you learned how to make good pictures?

  50. gdare says:

    I always knew how to make good photos :irked: ๐Ÿ˜› :cheers:

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