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Lake Cowichan view from our dock.

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Castlegar, BC June 3 & 4th

Friday we arrived early by 11am and went to Syringa Provincial Park which was 22 km outside of town to find out that they did not have any sites that would fit us with sunshine and access for our satellite dish. There were no water sites available either. With their limited generator hours we would not survive with the temps reaching 36 degrees this weekend and with the humidity it should feel around 44 C apparently. We also realized that we should have filled up with diesel before expecting to dry camp for a week. Sheesh. There is also talk around town about the possibility of running out of fuel this next week.


After returning to the Visitor's Center and talking with the staff, they suggested we check into the Kootenay River RV Park a short distance away. This is an adult only park and with it being "Sunfest" in Castlegar this weekend with a parade and everything it would be a good place to hole up in the heat next to the river, especially since they have 50 amp service and I could run at least 2 if not 3 heat pumps if needed. They had a weekly rate of $180 which works out to $25.77/night. Syringa was $27/night with no services whatsoever. After fueling up the coach we were finally minimally set up at 2 pm and sat outside in the shade enjoying a bevie. We relaxed for the rest of the day. It went up to 31 C this afternoon and still felt very warm in the shade. What a lovely park. Lots of space between units and lots of off-leash walking for Freya nearby and of course a quick swim in the river to stay cool. It stayed warm enough most of the night that the air conditioner needed to run until about 2 am before it cooled down enough outside. After reading all of the pamphlets from the Visitor's Center we found that there were tons of things to see in the area so staying a week was the right decision. The park is the site of an old drive-in movie theater. The large screen is still up although they have planted small trees in front of it so in several years it probably will be hidden.

"Now Playing"

 Ariel shot from webpage. the last unit on the right is where we are.

On the way back from Syringa Ray stopped beside Lower Arrow Lake and took the dog for a swim. Here are a few pictures he took.

This is Lower Arrow Lake just before becoming the Columbia River

This is the Brilliant Bridge crossing the Kootenay River. Our site is on the left bank just out of site. 

Saturday morning after Freya received her second walk of the day, Ray and I headed into town to attend the Kiwana's Pancake Breakfast. They were sure busy and the Castlegar Pageant Princesses were all there dressed in their finest in preparation for the parade at 11 am.

After breakfast we toured the little Rail Museum just down the street.

Railway (CPR) Museum is housed in a 99 year old station, one of the best preserved in the province. Once inside you can envision the hustle and bustle of the passengers boarding the trains. The station agent’s residence on the upper floor provides you with a wonderful sensation of the early 1900’s. The newspaper archives will give you hours of enjoyment. The beautifully landscaped area around the front of the station is a wonderful spot to rest with accessible parking to the downtown shops.(Google)

Where is Debbie?

Old RCMP Jailhouse .... let me out!

One of Ray's first summer jobs involved traveling in one of these cabooses.

He also road one of these

There is also a sculpture walk through town so I will drive Ray to the various areas later this week so he can snap pictures to his heart's content!

Although the parade was starting at 11 am and after seeing the lineup of cars we decided to get out of that end of town. The parade consisted of mostly groups of people, firetrucks etc. and very few floats that interested us so we opted to cross the river towards our campsite and check out the art gallery in hopes of seeing their amateur  photography display showing this weekend. Ray had hoped to get local picture ideas but most of the pictures were of other places. Pretty good display though.

On the way back to the campsite we stopped at the Selkirk College to view the Mir Peace Center overlooking the River just up from where we are staying.

 The conversation bench overlooking the river.

Mir Peace Center

Time to go back to camp and relax as it was already 25 C. Thank goodness for air conditioning as we of course left Freya at home this morning. Ray spent an hour or so resting his back in bed.

By 2:30 I was roasting outside so we decided to go for a short drive in the car with air conditioning to Nancy Green Provincial Park and have a look around. Very small park and campsites basically are picnic tables next to the parking lot. You would have to get there early to get yourself lined up before the day use people arrived! By 4 pm it had gone up to 33.8 C. Glad to be in a plugin!

Nancy Green Provincial Lake

This is all you get for a campsite!

Saturday night the city put on a fireworks display launched from Selkirk College just down the river from us. Ray and I carried our chairs to the communal fire pit and watched the fireworks from the bank of the river. Absolutely gorgeous. They lasted about 1/2 an hour from 10 to 10:30 (way past our bedtime!) Of course we left Freya in the motorhome as she is not too impressed with the loud bangs.

This picture from a previous year. (Google)

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