Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Spring Break in Skaha

We spent Spring Break in Penticton this year, climbing at the Skaha Bluffs. For various reasons we wanted to stay close to home and Penticton fit the bill perfectly. It's an unsettled time of year for weather, but in four weeks we only had one full day of rain which is pretty good by Squamish standards. We rented a small house downtown and enjoyed being away from home and relaxing in a different (and dry) environment.

View down Skaha lake toward Penticton. The Skaha Bluffs are visible on the right side of the photo above the water.

As the weeks went by, multiple flowers started to bloom. Desert shooting star is one of our favourites.

This is the small house we rented on Carmi Avenue. It had three bedrooms, a fish pond in the backyard and a ping pong table in the basement. It was well equipped and worked great for our needs.

Elise painted a small bird feeder and hung it in the backyard. We had lots of different birds visit, including a family of quails and a heron, although I think he was after the fish in the pond...

Elise made these critters out of clay with her bare hands while sitting at the kitchen table. I think she possesses a true skill in this department.

The climbing area is very user friendly with good hiking trails and signs to point the way. Here Elise approaches Red Tail Wall.

The desert comes alive in the spring with this flower, arrow-leaved balsam root. It's everywhere and really adds a splash of colour to the forests and hillsides.

We saw a large gopher snake and a rubber boa, but sadly I did not get a photo of either. This shot of a curious garter snake will have to do.

More pictures, Dad?

We drove up to Apex for an afternoon and Elise tried tubing in their tube park. She had a good time!

One of the cliffs in the northern part of Skaha Bluffs has a series of slots and caves that take you underneath. Our friend Kris and his son Eric joined us for a subterranean adventure. The kids had a blast!

Elise was very excited for Easter and counted the days. She had a good egg hunt at our house and the next day we went to the Penticton community Easter celebration where she had a second egg hunt, posed with the Easter bunny, went on a high ropes course and won an egg rolling contest!

For Elise, Eric's visit was a highlight of the trip. They really enjoyed playing together.

Spring beauty, another pretty flower that came to life during our visit.

We really enjoyed our time in the Okanagan and were sad to leave, but I'm sure we'll be back. We are now settled back in Squamish and missed both the fire AND the big rockslide during our time away. We arrived home to beautiful weather last Sunday. Summer is in the air...