Central Kootenay, Canada - Polarsteps

Richard's 12-year-old granddaughter, Adara, came by in the morning (she had wanted to meet us the previous night and missed us by 20 minutes); we spent a good, laid-back morning with both of them before finally saying goodbye and rolling out at noon. We were headed up to see Grace, a long-long-time friend from back in Victoria, a stop we've been looking forward to since we started this trip. We took Pass Creek, a winding back road, and then got on the Slocan Valley Rail Trail the rest of the way, all the way up the Slocan River past Winlaw. The trail was so good, especially after the stretch of rough trail we'd just been on; it was firm and easy to ride on, and took us such a long way through the woods next to the river. It was inevitably still slower than the roadway, so even though we were trying to boot it we didn't arrive until 6:45, exhausted and having gotten soaked towards the end. We're extremely cozied in here for a few days with Grace and the cats in a cottage in the woods, glad we're not camping in all the rain that's been coming down. We're on our friend tour of the Kootenays now (a sweet spot in our jaunt through BC), with a couple more stops in Krestova and then Balfour, before gunning it for the Alberta border and the Orosz family homestead in Lethbridge. We've managed to drop a mountain pass-- a few folks let us know that instead of tackling the Kootenay Pass, an exceptionally long climb and (I think?) the highest road summit in BC, we could take a little free ferry out of Balfour and come down the far side of Kootenay Lake to Creston-- a slightly longer route with shorter, steeper climbs, but more scenic and ultimately not taking another highway over another mountain (that apparently still has snow at the top). Mountain-wise, this means Farron (back on the rail trail) was our last BC summit, and we're down to one summit left, the Crowsnest Pass when we get into Alberta. Trip mileage: 1346km Bears: 5 (the fifth, see the video, we got to watch from the safety of Grace's house) -Sara Waking up and knowing that we were going to Grace's gave me energy for that day; we only had 60km to go until we got there. Grace is our sweet witchy friend who lives in their witch cottage in the woods. I have known them for over a decade and love them so much. We have taken our days here to reset, make some amazing meals, enjoy some outtings and just be together. The route we took was a back road, Pass Creek Road, and then the Slocan Rail Trail. All these awesome rail trails! This one was so smooth and so even levelled on the ground; such a treat from the mountain trail we just did. We will take it out of here as well. I can hardly believe how far we have come at his point and before we know it we will be out of the mountains and onto the prairie, which is a wild thought. The landscape has already changed so much from region to region in these mountain ranges, shifting onto the prairies after travelling at a slow pace through the mountain is going to be immensely mind blowing. -Kini
  1. derailed
  2. 🚲 Bike Jaunt 🚲
  3. Central Kootenay