It’s really unfair that I’ve chosen to cram all of this wonderment I experienced in British Columbia into a single post, but I really just need to get these knocked out! My friend in Vancouver was so excited for me to get to drive east through BC along the scenic Trans-Canada highway and take in the beautiful snow-kissed Canadian Rockies, and she helped me set my route.
I departed Vancouver on November 5 with the destination of Vernon, a little town just north of Okanagan Lake. The Okanagan Valley is a famously beautiful wine-producing region of Canada, and while it was JUST starting to get dark upon my arrival I was still able to take in some of that beauty. I would have liked to see and explore the town of Kelowna a little more, but it was proper dark by the time I made it there so I settled for a delicious buffalo cauliflower sandwich at a Naked Cafe Kelowna and continued on to my Airbnb.
The area had seen a big snowfall, and I wasn’t quite prepared for the gorgeous views of Swan Lake I had from my place the next morning. I stopped through Vernon for a bite to eat (and wound up snagging a Neil Young and a Billie/Ella/Lena/Sarah album from a local record store) then started a really breathtaking day of travel to Golden. I made a pit stop at the one trail of Canada’s Glacier National Park that was available to me (some combination of snow-related trail closures and dog restrictions, I want to say), and it was very cold but totally worth it.
I stayed at the luxurious Rondo Motel in Golden that night and the next. I had to work on the 7th (the day between those two nights) but shut down early enough to take an afternoon jaunt a little further east, through Yoho National Park to Banff. I make a quick stop at frozen Lake Louise and ultimately made it all the way to the Continental Divide, where Banff and Kootenay Parks meet, as do the provinces of British Columbia and Alberta.
After work on the 8th it was down to Creston, a town near the American border in a region I’ve since learned is infamous for its polygamist settlements? We got more snow that evening (maybe the most nervous driving moments of my entire trip were leaving my Airbnb there by way of the steep, snowy driveway!) which made for a sort of spooky, monochrome trip back into the ol’ U-S-of-A on the 9th.