Road Trip: British Columbia – Day 1

I awoke in a dreamy haze, it’s surely still too early for me to need to wake up. I check my alarm clock, and damn! It’s 4:40am, 5 minutes before my alarm will go off. I turn on my bedroom light and force myself to jump out of bed and start packing. British Columbia, here I come! 🙂

The last time that I shot over to British Columbia, it was to visit the city of Victoria on Vancouver Island in the hopes of discovering whether or not I could see myself living there permanently and it ended up being an amazing trip, with many wonderful experiences and memories. Perhaps I’ll post a flashback at a later time.

This time around, I’m visiting mainland BC with one friend from Ontario and another who had recently moved back out to Vancouver Island. He’s been a long time travel companion of mine. The trip is only going to take us 4 days to complete, with stops at Airbnb accommodations along the way in Kamloops, Lillooet, Squamish (outside of Whistler), then after touring Vancouver for a day, we will end up North of our airport in Abbotsford in a remote location to spend the night.

The flight was long and tiring, running on 4 hours of sleep, but the moment that I had taken my first step off the plane and had taken in a breath of that beautiful, clean, BC air, I felt good as new! My friend Gerrit who lives in Victoria was there to meet us at the airport with his van that looks more like a military all-terrain vehicle than something you’d put your family into.

We were on our way!

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After leaving Abbotsford, BC, we decided to head Northeast towards a small town called Hope. Coffee and food was a necessity because being trapped in a car with a tired and hangry me can be a fate worse than death for my companions.

The urban feeling of busy cities, concrete buildings, and shopping centers slowly began to fade away into towering mountains, empty space and houses dotted strategically along the horizon. This is the BC that I was waiting for and already knew that I would love.

When we finally arrived in Hope, we spotted an interesting looking cafe that seemed like a fitting spot to grab a bite to eat and rush some caffeine into our bloodstreams. The Owl St Cafe. It was a beautiful rustic looking place eccentrically decorated with owls on the inside. The food smelled delicious while being prepared and upon arrival, it did not disappoint. My sun-dried tomato and spinach omelette, with a large cappucino, was just what I needed to snap out of what felt like my zombie mind and to snap me back into reality. I would highly recommend this restaurant for the courtesy of its staff and the quality of its service.

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The journey continues off into the mountains up Highway 1, the small towns that we pass through appear less frequently and cater less to tourists and capitalism. The mountain peaks soar high and there are rivers and lakes that fill the valleys below. There is a gentle misting of rain but it’s not nearly enough to detract from the beauty of our surroundings or the enjoyment of our trip.

With many stops, frequent laughter, conversation, and great music, we eventually made our way further north as the landscape started to change in ways, from strong rocky peaks to large rolling hills with soft red and yellow sands, where the vegetation was more scarce from poor soil conditions and the lifestyle of the locals seemed to have more in common with ranchers from Montana then some of the other BC residents that we had crossed paths with. Horses and cows grazed in beige, dry fields. Spring had yet to fully flourish out the vegetation once again. The change in the landscape dynamic was interesting to observe.

We stopped for a moment at a lake to skip some rocks and puff on a vape pen with weed oil. Surrounded by such majesty, we were in no rush to keep moving but alas, we had a plan to keep to. So, on we went.

Life was good.

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Finally, upon arrival at our destination city of Kamloops, we gathered some food at a local grocery store and a few over-indulgent beverages to kick off the celebration of our first night in this beautiful area, then headed to our accommodation through Airbnb for some well-deserved rest and relaxation to recuperate our energies for the morning.

To Be Continued…