September, 2011 Archives

Lets go for a zip!

[caption id="attachment_108" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Treetop Flyers suspended staircase"][/caption]

Just the other day a few of us from Tourism Kamloops headed out to Chase to experience the Treetop Flyers Zipline. I have driven by it numerous times on my way out to the Shuswap and was excited to give it a try. For those of you who are like me and stare at it as you drive by thinking…hmmm it’s not that high, let me tell you it’s higher than it looks!

So far, the only zip line that is open is the Flying Fox. It is a dual line, 100 meter soar through the air! It’s a great way to get your feet wet before the opening of the Canyon Tour next summer (and at $20 a zip or 2 for $30 it’s a great deal!). Once the Canyon is open, this will be used as their training line. A cool feature of the flying fox is the suspended staircase you have to climb to get to the top of the tower. As soon as you take that first step, it starts to sway …. at this point you just keep your head down and climb!

[caption id="attachment_109" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Treetop Flyers Guide Daniel"][/caption]

As soon as I reach the top I realize it is a lot higher than it looks from the highway! Although I am not too intimidated by heights (or so I try to convince myself), I admit I could feel my heart beating faster than it was at the bottom of the stairs. I am met by Daniel, one of the guides who makes sure I am always latched in and don’t fall off the tower (chances are very slim as it is fully closed at this point except for the entrance from the stairs). Once we are all on the top, Daniel takes off in order to meet us at the bottom and Ron gets us in position to fly!

First up…Kamloops Kendel and Let Loose Lisa! I’m sure you can guess who won. If you said me, you are wrong, and if you said Kendel you are wrong. We tied! So naturally we would have to go again.

I admit I am no zip-lining expert, but I was very impressed with the breaking/stopping technology. Instead of having to break/stop on your own, or catch a rope to pull onto a platform, all the hard work is done for you. All they require is that you hold the handle and keep your feet up (you don’t even bounce backwards….you simply just stop). Once you land on the top of their sales office, you just unclip and walk to the side of the roof to watch the next zippers. (yes, that is the technical term)

Overall I had a great time at Treetop Flyers in Chase, BC. A huge thank-you to Matt, Ron and Daniel who did an excellent job! I can’t wait to try the Canyon!

[caption id="attachment_110" align="alignright" width="282" caption="Let Loose Lisa"][/caption]

Oh, and don’t think I forgot about the tie breaking zip…... I won! ;)


For more information on zip lining click here


To see our zip lining experience in video click here











Round round get around, I get around Heffley Lake.

I always wanted to be a surfer dude but growing up in metro Vancouver did not provide me with much in the way of opportunity to do that, other than skim boarding at White Rock beach. At least I wasn't trying to be a surfer dude while living in Alberta! But then I met Bodie. He grew up in Alberta and is such a surfer that when you look surfer up in a dictionary, his picture is there!  That joke probably doesn't work that well anymore...(what's a dictionary, eh?)

Our instructor Bodie and Me

Last week, part of our marketing team went out to Heffley Lake and tried Stand Up Paddling for the first time. Land training in advance was great practice but as with anything, getting out on the water is the real test and with the consequence of falling into the lake when you make a mistake, everyone wanted to be perfect from the start. It was a beautiful day and the lake was so clean and clear and warm that Kamloops Kendel jumped in just for the pleasure of doing so. (That's why she is Kamloops Kendel....no fear)

Stand Up Paddling is one of the fastest growing water sports in North America and I can see why. While we were on beginner boards that are wider and more stable, once we got the hang of it, it is not that difficult to paddle a lake. Now...it was a calm day with few boats and no wind so there will be a better test in the future as to how easy or difficult this is (Bodie goes 33 miles in open ocean between Hawaiian Islands and races just to add another element to it!)

Surf's Up

One of the coolest things about SUP (acronym for Stand Up Paddling) is how much it increases your ability to see down into the water below.  While out in the lake and heading over to a quiet little cove to watch the turtles, looking down 10 or 15 feet deep, there was a nice big rainbow trout cruising around. The loons were nearby but we did not get a chance to see them swimming and fishing below the surface.

This sport is also a great source of exercise and a way to meet like-minded people. There was a fellow out on the lake that came and joined us and he had modified his board to have a choice between two paddles, one single paddle and the other a

typical double paddle for a kayak. He had also added a seat back for seated paddling and cruised up looking very relaxed. (might have been the martini he had just mixed from his onboard wet bar ;-))

The beauty of SUP is that it will work in a river, a lake and an ocean and with the quick and easy access to rivers and lakes in the Kamloops area, I think we will be seeing a wave of these boards showing up everywhere. When people spot each other on the water, there is a tendency to paddle on over and ask about the board, the experience, etc. so it is also a great way to socialize. I remember seeing someone paddling down Paul Lake before I had tried it and I thought to myself, this person really stood out from all the other watercraft and floaties for the relaxed stance and movements they were using.

I highly recommend that people should head out, catch a wave and they may find themselves sittin on top of the world.

 



For more information on SUP in Kamloops click here - http://www.tourismkamloops.com/home_showSection_ID_786.html

To watch our SUP experience in Video click here - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIHHqmXIjQk

 

Fur-Babies vote Kamloops 4 Paws Up!

My husband and I have two young children.  We fuss over them, buy them luxurious bedding, toys galore and always ensure they eat only the best food available.  Our social life revolves around them… Double Date?  How about come over for a BBQ so the kids can play in the yard!  Weekend hike?  Sure, but let’s make sure it’s suitable for the kids!  Spur of the moment trip with friends?  Hmm… we’ll have to pass cause we can’t find a sitter.  Yes, like many couples, our life revolves around our kids….  Oh, did I mention our kids have four legs, a furry coat and wet nose?  Yup – our fur babies run our life but it’s not only us, most of my 20-something friends are the same!  We come to work and laugh at each other’s funny stories, give each other advice during those frustrating ‘early’ years and feel for each other when our dogs have ailments. I  remember a time when dogs were DOGS; growing up, my dogs were left outside day and night, fed whatever food was on sale and left at home all day without as little as a “goodbye Fido”.  Now in my mid-20’s, I’ve noticed a transformation in the roles dogs take in families.  Like me,  most of my friends and  co-workers are childless with no plans on having  kids in the near future which leaves me to wonder if having ‘fur-babies’ is something new to our generation?

[caption id="attachment_46" align="alignleft" width="343" caption="Playing along the Thompson River"]Kona & Bailey playing in front Mt. Peter and Paul[/caption]

Needless to say, if you’re a dog owner and reading this blog entry – you’ll benefit from my ‘crazy dog lady’ behavior, I promise.  As mentioned above, much of my social life involves Kona (Boxer/Shepherd) & Bailey (Boxer/Lab) so please enjoy the following tips and recommendations if you plan on visiting Kamloops with your own fur-baby.

One of Kona’s favorite things to do is swim and play fetch in the river and surrounding lakes.   Pioneer Park and Overlanders’ Beach both offer great off-leash areas for dogs to run, play, and swim.  Both are located within 5 minutes from the city centre, making it easy and accessible to visit.   McConnell Lake and Isobel Lake are both excellent circle loops approximately 25 minutes from downtown.  Taking an hour to walk around the lake via nature trail, there are plenty of opportunities for the dogs to take a dip.  There are also resting areas, outhouses and picnic tables for the humans.

Kona also loves hiking with his dog pals and there is no shortage of trails in Kamloops either.  Two great off-leash areas worth mentioning are Kenna Cartwright Park and Petersen Creek Park.  Both are located within city limits and offer a several hiking and biking trails ranging from green to black diamond.

[caption id="attachment_48" align="alignright" width="249" caption="Kona and Bailey enjoy the view from Petersen Creek Park with their pal, Neika"]Kona and Bailey enjoy the view from Petersen Creek Park with their pal, Neika.[/caption]

Bailey is our social butterfly. She loves interacting with other dogs and there is no better place to do that than one of the many dog parks in the city.  With 15 off-leash park areas, she is able to run and play with her newly found friends, then returns home exercised and satisfied! The dog park at Ord Road is the busiest in town – you’ll often find other dogs and owners there regardless of the time which means no matter when you go, there will likely be someone there to socialize with.  Another one of Bailey’s favorite past times is running.  We often strap on our rollerblades and/or bike and take her on a nice long run along the Rivers’ Trail, a 20+km designated walkway expanding throughout most of the city.  Maps are available online or at the Kamloops Visitor Centre.

If you’re visiting the city, there are over 30 accommodation options in Kamloops that accept dogs to stay over (call ahead of course!). In addition, there are plenty of doggy daycare selections in case you want to take in a few attractions on your own, numerous veterinarians in case of emergency and even a 5 km dog friendly cross country ski trail at Stake Lake if you visit in the winter.  When we say Kamloops is dog friendly, we’re not joking around!  If you want any more information on dog friendly activities, accommodation or more – check out our dog friendly vacation page http://www.tourismkamloops.com/home_showSection_ID_810.html .

This is the last long weekend of the summer, so get out there with your pooch and have some fun!

Posted in Events, Pet Friendly,