Canadian travel blog highlights best outdoor activities around Penticton

Hike Bike Travel created a list of different ways to explore the area this spring

One of Canada’s most notable travel bloggers has highlighted the five best outdoor activities around Penticton that residents and tourists should take advantage of this spring and summer.

Leigh McAdam, Calgary-based writer that runs the blog Hike Bike Travel, wrote in a recent post “Penticton is the perfect playground for outdoor adventure enthusiasts with rugged hills, a multitude of lakes and usually great weather.”

First on McAdam’s list of suggested outdoor activities is taking a paddle boat to Rattlesnake Island in the waters of Okanagan Lake. Part of the Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park, the fabled Ogopogo is rumoured to live in a cave on the island, which has long been a favourite tourist destination.

In addition, the island has been the end point of the annual Interior Savings Across the Lake Swim. Starting in Peachland, swimmers can choose one of two routes out to the island, either a 3.1-kilometre swim across Okanagan Lake or a 7-km out-and-back swim that loops around the back of the island.

Next, McAdam recommends cyclists tour the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR). She highlights that because the top marks of the gentle route are two per cent grade and easily accessible, this activity is suitable for the whole family.

The trail is over 600 km long and offers lush scenery to both hikers and cyclists, which McAdam describes as “panoramic views of the sun-soaked lakes and vineyards of the Okanagan Valley as the trail winds down towards Penticton.”

Those with their eyes on sky will enjoy McAdam’s next recommendation, climbing the Skaha Bluffs in Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park. Located just minutes south of the city, the bluffs offer “world-class climbing opportunities” according to BC Parks.

The park is 489 hectares and BC Parks describes its “distinctive terrain features of the bluffs along with the Gillies Creek corridor reflect extremely threatened riparian and grassland plant communities.”

If you prefer to go at your own pace and take in the scenery, McAdam suggests hiking McIntyre Bluff, “a large granite ridge looming above Highway 97.” Located south of Vaseux Lake between Okanagan Falls and Oliver, the hike to the top of the bluff takes between two to four hours according to Explore Oliver BC.

“The most beautiful time of year to hike McIntyre Bluff is in late spring or early summer when the wildflowers are in bloom,” states Explore Oliver BC’s website.

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Finally, for those looking to slow down altogether, McAdam recommends exploring Vaseux Lake, which features “dramatic cliffs (as) a backdrop to this small and shallow lake (with) a handful of sandy beaches (dotting) the shoreline.”

According to BC Parks, Vaseux Lake Provincial Park offers “promising fishing opportunities for largemouth bass, rainbow trout and carp.”

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
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