Snowshoeing a fantastic experience

The adventures to be experienced in the Summerland area are endless, one only needs the gumption to get up and go out to be entertained.

Dear Editor:

The adventures to be experienced in the Summerland area are endless, one only needs the gumption to get up and go out to be entertained.

Snowshoeing near Garnett Lake turned out to be a fantastic way to spend the afternoon.

We gathered in the parking lot at noon and donned our packs and snow shoes while our guide from Selah Outdoor Explorations gave us a brief introduction to the area and some history about the Cariboo Gold Rush Trail.

A print off identifying some common tracks and other evidence of wildlife was passed out and we headed off into the wild.

Slowly we ambled our way through the lush forrest, seeking clues amongst the snow covered fauna for animal life.

A cozy little spot tucked under a fir branch littered with the shells of a cone where a squirrel or chipmunk must have enjoyed a meal, the croak of a raven following us in curiosity, prints of a deer as it bound off to seek a more private location.  The clues were endless for those with an alert eye.

My oldest son spotted some bark removed from a young tree and informed me that porcupines use bark as a food source.

Our guide confirmed this and I wondered once again, how is it that our children become wiser than ourselves? Especially when it is us who are their teachers.

Stopping for a break down by the waters edge we gingerly tested the strength of the ice and were pleased to find it solid enough to allow exploration of the shoreline.

Once again our guide regaled us with tales from local history, some of which he read from a book, others he recited from memory, while we all enjoyed a snack and a chance to take in our surroundings.

This was a likely camping spot for our Gold Rush travellers and our guide’s narration of exploits gone wrong made one ponder the distance back to town in a time when the traveller used only a horse as transportation.

I’m certain this thought was not in the mind of our wide eyed youth as they sat in silence to hear of animal attacks and other fateful injuries.

With a burst of energy after our break we headed up the bank, making a loop back towards our vehicles.

The snow shoes had been surprisingly simple to use.  Particularly the old fashioned, trapper style.

Children as young as seven were floating atop of three feet of snow as if it were the most natural thing in the world.

These shoes were designed with motion in mind.

The afternoon just flew by.

The sun stayed hidden behind cloud this day, but our bodies were delighted and our minds enchanted, so, our hearts shone instead.

Tricia Olma

Summerland