Summer Adventures in Merritt & Nicola Valley, BC, Canada

Wedding Anniversaries 

Celebrating 50 Years of Marriage

Anniversary Special

On any given day there is likely to be wedding anniversaries in Merritt BC.  But there is one that is especially dear to my heart and that is mine and Shirley’s.  This summer, in Merritt British Columbia, we celebrated our 50th Anniversary, which in this day and age, has become rare.  However, it is not so among our friends.

Where My Wedding Anniversary Began

At the end of 1969 and the beginning of 1970 most of my friends were celebrating their 21st birthdays. One of those birthdays was being celebrated on January 3rd, 1970.  So that meant we had a party on New Year’s Eve and on January 3rd. It was decided we should go to Oil Can Harry’s Night Club in downtown Vancouver, BC, Canada on January 2nd.  As I was not seeing anyone at the time I did not have a date but my friends came to the rescue and arranged a blind date for me.  That blind date was Shirley and the rest is history.

The Wedding

Wedding Anniversaries with Tom and Shirley

Tom and Shirley July 22, 1972 Wedding Photographer Photo

Our wedding was a very lavish affair because Shirley’s Dad wanted to have a massive celebration.  We, on the other hand, would have preferred a more intimate affair.  So we gave him a list of “must haves” and then told him if he wanted to invite others he could do so but he had to prepare and send the invitations.  As a result we had a very large group helping us celebrate.

The Journey to Celebrating Wedding Anniversaries 

The most often question asked us is how did we do it? Well from my perspective the major secret is finding the right person as your partner and I have to say I hit the Jackpot.  I don’t think I could have found someone who was more suitable.  She is kind, loving and patient.  She is also flexible as our initial plan did not work out.  I was going to teach and in the summers we were going back to Oregon State University so she could complete her degree.

We had to regroup and develop a new plan.

The Next Steps

We started out in a basement suite in East Vancouver, living below an Italian family.  They were so kind to us.  However, prices were starting to rise so we felt it was necessary to get into the housing market.  As a result we purchased a townhouse near Steveston in Richmond BC.

Our Richmond Home

Our Richmond Home
Tom Reynolds Photo

Our Careers

I then started my 33 year career  in Municipal Government as an accounting clerk.  The fog in Richmond was a major hazard to my commute to Coquitlam so we bought a house out that way. Our Children were born in this house.

After Coquitlam I spent 7 years in the City of Port Moody as Deputy Treasurer.  Shirley was working in the insurance field. However it became time to advance my career so I took a job in Williams Lake, which turned out to be a great place for families.  We spent the next sixteen years doing what families do, bringing kids to soccer, hockey, baseball, art, music and Job’s Daughters. Needless to say those years flew by.

Shirley had lucked into a great job at the orthodontist’s office.  She had a great employer who let her sneak out to attend school events.  We were able to get away on weekends because the office was closed on Fridays at noon.

Times Are A Changing 

Unfortunately, the City was so eager to have Wal-Mart come to town that they were prepared to meet the large retailer’s wishes despite protests from the community.  Council’s decision impacted us and I could no longer feel comfortable working for this group.  Hence our move to Merritt.

 

Williams Lake Home

Williams Lake Home
Tom Reynolds Photo

Merritt BC Here We Come

The year was 2003 and by this time we were empty nesters.  We had bought a “fixer upper”  in a great neighbourhood by the forest and overlooking the Nicola Valley.  It turned out to be a smart move as we quickly made friends and got involved in the community through our volunteering.

We have been here almost twenty years.  So if you want to know why we love it,  head over to the stories on  Experience Nicola Valley and travel information on Experience Merritt to see all the things that make this place so special.

Wedding Anniversaries Our Special One

When our kids asked us what kind of party we wanted for our fiftieth anniversary I said I would like just a small gathering and Shirley agreed.  Our celebration was a destination party in the North Shuswap.

North shuswap Cabin

North Shuswap cabin Tom Reynolds Photo

We were fortunate to be able to rent a luxurious cabin just across from the lake which provided great water fun for all our guests.

Water Fun

Water Fun Steve Reynolds Photo

However, it is important to note that the big part of any wedding anniversary celebration is the food.  Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the feast but I assure you it was delicious.  In any case, I do have a picture of the cup cakes my daughter made.  The icing represents the colours of our wedding.

Cup cakes

Cup Cakes Steve Reynolds Photo

While our group was small, they came from Calgary, Spokane, Redmond, Ladner, Langley, Richmond and Vancouver.

Attendees

Attendees Reynolds Photo

The last celebration of the day was the lighting of sparklers around the fire pit.

Sparkler Celebration

Sparker Celebration Steve Reynolds Photo

In conclusion, we leave our story of our wedding anniversary with a photo of us fifty years after the photo at the top of this article.

fifty years later

Fifty Years Later Steve Reynolds Photo

Wedding Anniversaries 

Celebrating 50 Years of Marriage

Anniversary Special

 

Merritt British Columbia Canada

Nicola Valley Travel and Tourism Guides

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

Award Winning Birding Naturalist  in Merritt BC Canada

Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Morton Speak at NVIT Theatre

Birding study while backpacking and wilderness camping on the Trans Canada Trail across Canada

The opportunities of Birdwatching in Merritt BC has never been more clear. This past week Tourism Nicola Valley, EH Canada Travel, in partnership with the Nicola Valley Naturalist Society, hosted award winning naturalist Dr. Sonya Richmond and photographer Sean Morton right here in Merritt British Columbia Canada.  Our guests shared their adventures, stories, tips and bird sightings from across the country while backpacking the Trans Canada Trail during a 1-hour presentation at NVIT (Nicola Valley Institute of Technology) on Thursday October 20th, 2022. 

Birdwatching in Merritt BC with Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Morton

Birdwatching in Merritt BC

Birdwatching in Merritt BC presentation with Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Morton. Photo Credit: Greg Girard

Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Richmond have a story to tell. A 4 year story in fact, studying people’s relationship with nature, while documenting bird species,  on the 28000 kilometre long Trans Canada Trail. They tell their unfolding story on their blog called Come Walk With Us

The TCT Starting Line

They started their journey in Newfoundland, Canada in 2019 seeking out bird species, and recording their findings as they backpacked east until they reached British Columbia, and Merritt BC. It was here in the Nicola Valley, they presented an impressive slide show presentation at NVIT about birds throughout Canada with commentary depicting the many geographical landscapes Canada enjoys, as well as, the ever changing wildlife species specific to each region. It was a lesson to behold. A lesson which opened eyes and ears for the first time. We share with you their presentation below.  

Come Walk With Us

Trans Canada Trail Penticton BC

Picking up Dr. Sonya and Sean in Penticton BC. Photo Credit: Greg Girard

Our journey with the award-winning duo started with picking them up near the Trans Canada Trail in Penticton, BC. Certainly it was exciting to meet Sonya and Sean in person after so many years of e-connecting. The award winning naturalist and photographer have been sharing their backpacking, wildlife, birding and camping stories on their blog called Come Walk With Us, and through their social media channels for years now. Therefore you can follow their exploits and insights easily on social media, like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, by searching one of their hashtags #hike4birds and/or #comewalkwithus.

Stories on the Trans Canada Trail

It is a story of successes and challenges. Wildlife sightings and missed sightings. Sun and snow. Fires and smoke. Silence and noise. And, yes, there are many encounters with good people and, sadly, a few with bad people. However, it is their story on the Trans Canada Trail of personal growth while flying solo on the wings of birds. They will be the third group to have completed the Trans Canada Trail in history! 

Who is Dr. Sonya?

Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Morton of Come Walk With Us.

Dr. Sonya Richmond and Sean Morton of Come Walk With Us. Photo Credit: Sean Morton

Dr. Sonya Richmond is a friend, scholar, an awarding winning Canadian Naturalist, a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, as well as, member of the Explorer’s Club of Canada. Her awards include:

  • An Inspire Award Winner – Universal Women’s Network (2021).
  • Nature Inspiration Award Finalist – Canadian Museum of Nature (2021)
  • Recipient of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society Expedition Grant (2021) and Research Grant (2022)
  • Stan Hodgkiss Canadian Outdoor Person of the Year – Canadian Federation of Wildlife (2022)
  • Ontario Federation of Ornithologist’s Certificate of Appreciation (2022).  In my language “a person who studies or is an expert on birds”

And, my personal favorite, Dr. Sonya is a member of the award winning Canada Adventure Seeker Club. But then again I am a tad bias on this one. 

Who is Sean Morton?

Sean Morton is a friend, scholar, a Member of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, and an award-winning landscape and nature photographer whose work has been published in Broadview Magazine, Ontario Nature, Alberta Nature and the Bruce Trail Magazine among others.

Birdwatching in Merritt, BC – What We Learned

They even did some research about birding in the Nicola Valley. It was a treat listening to the naturalists about birdwatching in Merritt BC . Some of us got schooled, others an awakening  and some… a gentle reminder of the perfect opportunities for birdwatching we can enjoy in our very own valley of birds. In other words… it totally makes sense now!

Birdwatching in Merritt BC Makes Sense 

Merritt sits under the popular birding migration route called the Pacific Flyway attracting birds to the region every year. As a result, our lakes play a large part in attracting birds to our region to nest, feed and breed.  In fact one of the largest IBA’s in Western Canada for protecting birds is located in the Nicola Valley. It is called the “Douglas Lake Plateau“. I believe the number of bird species identified in the valley is around 166. I am sure our friends at the Nicola Valley Naturalist Club can provide an exact count. 

What is the Douglas Lake Plateau IBA?

An IBA is an “Important Birding Area”.  The Douglas Lake Plateau IBA starts in Kamloops, BC in the north to Nicola Lake in the south, then extends east to Salmon Lake. The most notable bird sightings include the Burrowing Owl, Lewis Woodpecker, and Sandhill Cranes. However, did you know that the Douglas Lake Plateau is a migration and breeding ground for Sandhill Cranes? It is said that up to 10,000 Sandhill Cranes visit during the IBA during the spring and fall migrations. Wow right! In BC, the Douglas Lake Plateau is an important region to protect for migratory birds. 

The Birding Industry in Canada

The opportunities of the Canadian birdwatching industry are many. The market is huge!

“30.7% (7,605,527) of adult Canadians went wildlife viewing while on an out-of-town, overnight trip of one or more nights.” Bird Canada

Consequently, birders tend to spend money in other areas of the community as well. Art, entertainment, cultural and historical attractions tend to compliment a wildlife viewing adventure. Research shows birders are also interested in other adventures like hiking, climbing & paddling; cycling; cross-country skiing & snowshoeing. Canadian wildlife viewers spend $1.3 billion on wildlife viewing adventures per year.  Beginner birders spent an average of $330.68 per day, as compared with $549.38 by expert birders.

How Can We Better Promote Birdwatching in Merritt BC

What we learned includes how to start educating our locals, attracting more bird enthusiasts to the Nicola Valley and do a better job at involving our youth. It is apparent that screen time is at an all time dangerous level for our youth. Using programs like iNaturalist will help transform “screen time to green time” as it is similar to a video game but it involves the outdoors to play. To maintain and grow a specific tourism sector the youth have to carry the torch. If they do not, the torch just may go out.

Birding Library in Merritt

Therefore, an important note to end on. We have a birding backpacking program operated by the Nicola Valley Public Library. Who would of “thunk” it. Time to grow that program too. Our birds depend on it. 

In conclusion we would like to thank Dr. Sonya and Sean for taking the time to visit with us and to educate some of us, including this blogger. The feedback has been very positive and you have left a big impression on the Nicola Valley. Thank you from all of us in the Nicola Valley including Melvina White (TNV), Tia Delaney (ENV Blogger), Alan Burger ( Nicola Naturalist Society ) and the Girard Brothers (Greg & Colin Girard) of Canada Travel Website. 

Contact Dr. Sonya and Sean Morton

Website: www.comewalkwithus.online

Email: comewalkwithus@hotmail.com

How You Can Donate: https://www.comewalkwithus.online/donate

Birdwatching in Merritt BC

Greg Girard, Dr. Sonya Richmond, Sean Morton, Alan Burger, Colin Girard

Sean Morton, Melvina White, Sonya Morton

Sean Morton, Melvina White, Dr. Sonya Richmond

Sean Morton, Sonya Morton, Tia Delaney

Sean Morton, Dr. Sonya Richmond, Tia Delaney

Birdwatching in Merritt BC Canada

Birding Naturalist and Wildlife Photographer in Merritt BC Canada

 

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning program to your community.

RACING IN MERRITT BC

Race Day in the Nicola Valley

EXPERIENCE THE MERRITT SPEEDWAY

Racing in Merritt BC – Have I got the hot ticket for you! I’m excited to share my first-ever visit to the Merritt Speedway. For someone who is relatively new to town, I was hooked from the moment the engines roared. Follow the No. 8 road through the Nicola Valley to Marmott Rd just 5 minutes outside the city.

Racing in Merritt BC

Eager fans await the races. (Tia Delaney)

Fun for Everyone Racing in Merritt BC

“They run stock cars on rebuilt engines,” dad says as we pull out of the driveway. I am excited as the big Race Day is finally here at the Merritt Speedway! I’ve wrangled him and my uncle to come with me as all of us are first-timers to the track.  Yes, here is to growing tourism in Merritt BC!

Race Day in the Nicola Valley

I loved everything about this day, from the delicious smell of the concession to the children jumping up as the races began. However, watching the crowd, I spied lucky fans scoring the top-row seats. Everyone cheered loudly as their favorites pulled across the finish line. 

Racing in Merritt BC

Cars speeding around the track. (Tia Delaney)

 

Attractions in Merritt

Although moving here a year ago, I haven’t yet experienced the must-see attractions that my new community has to offer. For example, racing, fishing, camping, hiking, sledding, and exploring the many lakes and hills surrounding us. It’s an absolutely beautiful community, and I’m excited to check it all out!

 

Clear day for racing

Clear blue sky and racetrack. (Tia Delaney)

Nostalgia at First Glance

We pull up and make our way to a thin white building that conveniently says “Ticket Booth” along the side. It is set next to a long row of old wooden blue bleachers. The nostalgia is present as the fresh outdoor air and scenic view bring back memories of country fairs and rodeos of my youth. Above all a great way to spend a day!

Cash-Friendly Car Racing in Merritt BC 

We walk up to the ticket counter, meanwhile, the announcer’s voice booms as he shares commentary on the racers, “Fire up your engines, we’re ready for some racing in Merritt BC!” The cashier waves us over, “We take cash only,” she says helpfully. I file that away under Useful Information, as I don’t want to miss out on tickets, memorabilia, and concession snacks. You really will want to put Nicola Valley racing on your activities list.

Seniors Discount at the races

Eyes ahead, the races are on! (Tia Delaney)

A Seniors Discount

“Are you a senior?” she asks my uncle, “It depends,” he answers with a grin. “Are you over 55?” she says with a chuckle. Dad’s laugh is the answer as he rags on his younger brother, “Guess who’s a senior now!” It’s always a good time with these two, never a dull moment!

Kid Friendly Place

The cashier takes our cash, “That will be $10 each per senior and $15 for one adult.” However, note that kids 10 and under are free, definitely playing the “cool auntie” card next time the little ones are in town. For those of you looking for fun things to do in the city, it truly is a fun and affordable way to spend an afternoon. 

Truck sprays water on track

No dust in sight with this tanker. (Tia Delaney)

Retro Water Tanker when Racing in Merritt BC

Stamped and on our way, I move closer to get a good look at the giant white tanker truck with an exposed engine to laps around the track. Firstly, I notice the sheer size of the tires. Secondly, the rate it travels is at a rocking speed. The track is thoroughly doused with water before the announcer calls the cars to the track to begin grooming it for Merritt Speedway racing.

 

Hear the Car Engines Roar

You can hear the roar of the engines. As a result, the whole place is beginning to sound like a Ferrari convention. It certainly is a great sound, the rumble sits low in your chest.  Subsequently, you can picture yourself strapping into your car and getting ready for your first race!

A Birdseye View

I hunker down on the far bleachers with a side view of the racers coming out of the pit and navigating their first corner. Likewise, the smoke starts radiating from cars still being worked on. We still have 15 minutes until the first race begins. But most importantly, the drivers are ensuring their race cars are safe for a day at the track.

Announcing the Starting Line

The announcer’s voice booms across the field ushering in the starting Line-Up and greeting the fans. Meanwhile, I scan the crowd for those who have arrived early to take in BC’s Fastest Dirt Track. The Merritt Speedway. Moreover, it is not to be missed!

The Final Lap when Racing in Merritt BC

In conclusion, the dust settles as the final racing invitational completes its last rounds. Likewise, we raise a salute to the fans, sponsors, and drivers, as the trophies are handed out and the victory lap is taken. A successful season all in all, and happy fans look forward to the new year in anticipation.

Racing into Fall

Subsequently, with the end of the Racing Season, it’s time to get geared up for Fall. For instance, Pumpkin carving, Apple bobbing, Costume hunting, Cider sipping, and Eggnog delighting are just a few of the treats we have in store for you. And maybe, just maybe, you’ll feel you’ve fallen in love with Merritt just a little bit more!

Carving Time

Carving Time! Photo Credit: Tania Stewart

Racing in Merritt BC

Nicola Valley racing at Merritt Speedway

4 Season Getaway

 

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning program to your community.

Backcountry Adventure in Merritt BC

Exploring Fall & Winter Seasonal 

Merritt BC Adventures in our wilderness backcountry trails, lakes and roads.

Backcountry Adventure in Merritt BC – The Nicola Valley is a perfect for all outdoor adventure seekers who love a challenge in addition to having a memorable experience surrounded by mountainous beauty. Therefore, it is easy for me to say that, “Backcountry adventure in Merritt BC is your #1 destination spot for all off-roading fun.” The region is specially geared for weekend trips, day trips, or week-long vacations. We enjoy moderate temperatures during the fall and winter which truly makes the Nicola Valley ideal for all levels of outdoor backcountry 4×4 adventures.  Merritt is surrounded by the most amazing 4×4 mountain trails in Canada making this your year-round destination spot.

Backcountry Adventure Merritt BC

Hidden Falls. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Merritt BC Adventures

Backcountry Relaxing. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Fall Backcountry Adventure in Merritt BC

The Autumn lifestyle around Merritt BC can only be experienced in person. It is that beautiful!  Besides being my favorite season, exploring the backcountry in the fall & winter around the valley is truly exhilarating, scenic and eye popping. That is to say, that many will come to enjoy our fall colors, babbling brooks, less traffic, and an abundance of empty picnic spots lakeside.  Share your photos and trip reports with us on Facebook.  Tag us on your posts with @experiencenicolavalley .

Nature in Merritt BC

You can only find this in the backcountry. Photo Tania Stewart.

Backcountry Adventure Lakes & Hidden Falls 

Important to note while out exploring around Merritt BC are the many hidden falls and pristine lakes that you can find in the backcountry.  Certain waterfalls, lakes, mountains, and other natural beauties might be off-limits unless you have an off-road vehicle to drive you in there.  

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” Albert Einstein

 

Yoga in Merritt BC

I will see you here! Picture by Tania Stewart.

Lake Adventures in Nicola Valley

This is what we experience in life! Picture Tania Stewart.

“For my part, I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream. ” Vincent Van Gogh

Backcountry  Hamlets  Merritt BC

While a Nicola Valley adventure will take you through breathtaking scenic terrain, it will also give  you a chance to visit a few historic communities. There are hidden jewels tucked away from the main highways with backroad accessibility such as Kingsville and Brookmere historic hamlets.  Great history in the fall as well as in the winter.  

Backcountry signseeing in Nicola Valley

Adventure is different for everyone. Photo Tania Stewart.

 

“While I relish our warm months, winter forms our character and brings out our best.” Tom Allen

 

Kayaking Merritt Lakes.

Fall fishing on empty lakes. Photo Credit eh Canada Travel Website

Exploring Fall & Winter Seasonal

Mountain top lakes. Photo by Tania Stewart

Backcountry Winter Adventures

Whether you are looking for a slower scenic off-road trip or a heart-pounding snow-covered mountain trail adventure, we can help. Winter in the surrounding Nicola Valley offers just that. Exploring backcountry Merritt BC is ideal for all levels of winter sport.  

snowmobiling airtime winter sports

Nothing like getting a little air while snowmobiling. Photo credit Experience Nicola Valley

Snowmobiling in Merritt BC

Bring your sled. Photo Tania Stewart

Chasing The Snow in Merritt BC

The Nicola Valley is ideal for snow chasers and snow climbers 4×4 style. Whether on a zipped-out sled or a pimped-out  4×4 geared for ultimate winter terrain traction, the Nicola Valley offers countless hours of thrill-seeking extreme adventures. Important to know, adventure does not come knocking, you have to go looking for life adventures in our backcountry. However it is important to understand how to safely off-road and explore the backcountry in the winter.   

“Adventure is worthwhile.” – Aristotle

Merritt BC off-roading

Adventure is an attitude. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Backcountry roads

Just get out there! Picture Tania Stewart.

“Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, and drink the wild air.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Backcountry Adventure Trails 

Hiking in the Fall & Winter Seasonal

Out in the backcountry. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Rivers of the Nicola Valley

Make memories, not live in your dreams. Photo from Tania Stewart.

Off roading in Merritt BC

Mountain journey. Photo by Tania Stewart.

 “Spontaneity is the best kind of adventure.” Unknown

Hospitality in the Nicola Valley 

Affordable hotel rates with inclusive packages make this your ideal outdoor destination spot during the fall & winter seasons. Moreover, people around Canada and the world are discovering backcountry adventures in Merritt BC,  making it their  #1 top outdoor vacation destination in our region. Camping during the fall and winter is an experience our valley can accommodate for all adventure seekers. With over 200 lakes, you can choose your campsite.   

Merritt BC restaurant and pubs

MR Mikes Merritt BC. Photo by Tania Stewart.

“If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine; it’s lethal.” – Paulo Coelho

Backcountry Adventure in Merritt BC

Trip reports are welcome. Tania Stewart.

“Backcountry Etiquette means that you never leave anything behind or endanger wildlife.” Tania Stewart

Backcountry rivers in Nicola valley

Spontaneity is the best kind of adventure. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Forests in Merritt BC

Happiness is the goal. Photo by Tania Stewart

Exploring the Backcountry in Merritt BC

When off-roading in the fall & winter, know what you are up against. Understand and be able to identify the different types of snow. Furthermore traversing different snow consistencies will require different driving techniques.  For example, there is hard, icy snow located on north-facing slopes. Soft snow that is sitting in the sun. Knowing that trying to stay on top of soft and dry snow is often harder than driving over wet and heavy snow. Truly plan your course accordingly before embarking out in the backcountry. Moreover, a map or booklet on the Nicola Valley backcountry is a must. From my own experience, this has saved us on many occasions. Seasonal daylight hours with cooler weather can be challenging. Do not let it be.

River walking in Merritt BC

YES!’ to your adventure. Photo Tania Stewart.

Rivers of the Nicola Valley

Fill your life with adventures. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Know Your Limits While Exploring Backcountry in Merritt BC

I can not stress the importance of knowing your limits. Moreover, know the limits of your vehicle. If you are just starting to adventure in the backcountry. Try low-lying roads on dry tracks. Even better, bring a well-seasoned off-roader with you. Additionally, walkie-talkies are a must. Bring a friend, preferably in their vehicle.  If you have a break down it could be many hours or days before anyone finds you. Cell phones may not work in a lot of areas.  Keep water, food, flashlights, long distant radio, extra clothing even a flare gun. 

Let’s make adventure priority #1. Photo courtesy of Tania Stewart.

Backcountry Lakes

Grab your map, set your time, pack gear, gas up, and go. Moreover, “Just Do It!” Exploring backcountry parallels to treasure hunting. Backcountry adventure in Merritt BC provides scenic natural beauty, with countless lakes. Must note, when out in the backcountry you may only see wildlife. Look out for fellow adventure seekers. I hear they will always welcome sharing places that are a must-see, and what areas to avoid.

Events in Merritt BC

Backcountry trip adventure. Picture by Tania Stewart

Nicola Valley adventures

Dedicated adventurers. Photo courtesy Tania Stewart.

Dedicated Adventurers Wanted in Merritt BC 

Don’t let the fall or winter blues set in. Truly, plan your picnic spot mountainside or one with a lakeshore view. While in the winter months, pack up your skis, sleds, crazy carpets even snowshoes. Outdoor backcountry mountain journeys are waiting for you right here in Merritt BC Canada.

Merritt British Columbia Backcountry Adventures

Nicola Valley is a 4 Season Getaway

 

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning program to your community.

Campsites and Campgrounds in the Nicola Valley

Tips That Will Improve Any Merritt Campground  Trip

Campground Summer Adventures in Merritt, Canada

When  visiting Campsites and Campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada, make your next outdoor adventure easier with these simple camping tips. Moreover, with good planning anyone can make camping a memorable outdoor experience in the Nicola Valley. Knowing that camping connects you with nature, allows you to recharge your batteries while relaxing with family and friends. Experiencing camping in Merritt BC with these useful tips will improve your any camping trip.

Campsites and Campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada

Family Camping. Photo by Robert Neil

Water skiing in Merritt BC

Water skiing. Photo by Robert Neil.

Safety In Our Campsites and Campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada

Albeit, I love to camp around Merritt BC for all the mountains, scenery and activities we will experience. But safety is always my priority while out in the backcountry. The likelihood to observe all kinds of wildlife is truly a magical experience which I encourage. However,  I ask that you treat wildlife with the respect they need and deserve. My motto is that I am a guest in their home, and very privileged to be welcomed. Moreover, try and do some research on the campground you will be visiting.  A good source of information is the Experience Merritt website for campsites and campgrounds.

Summer Adventure on Nicola Valley’s Lakes

Dream summers. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Family campgrounds in the Nicola Valley

Memories are made camping Photo by Tania Stewart.

Carry bear spray, ensure it is accessible, and know how to use it before heading out on the trails. 

BC wilderness camping

BC Camping. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Stay respectful of the “Wilderness and Others”

It is important to always be considerate of all backcountry environments when visiting our campsites and campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada. Please… always keep your campsite clean. Leaving food out will attract all kinds of wildlife, including unwanted pests such as wasps, bears and more. Importantly, wildlife is also attracted to items that have an odor such as garbage, unwashed dishes, stoves, coolers, dog dishes, and toiletries. My toothpaste even? Yes, and shampoo, deodorant, skin cream, shaving lotion, suntan lotions, and baby diapers (especially used) will attract wildlife. Very important to always wash, and put away dishes, pots, and all garbage while storing your toiletries in air-sealed containers.  

Camping in Merritt BC Canada

Bear aware. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Wildlife in Merritt BC Canada

Wildlife Goat. Photo by Robert Neil.

Bear Aware in Our Campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada

If you knew how many bears are put down every year due to our lack of understanding and carelessness, you would cry.  It is important to know that carelessness can be a death sentence for a bear and its cubs. Did you know that much of our human-sourced food is rich in calories and that it is on a bear’s wish list to sustain itself hibernating in the winter months.  Therefore, garbage foraging for a bear is like us ordering take-out. It is easy and they lose their fear of us, associating us with food. Unfortunately, eating these foods brings bears and people closer together. Over time, bears lose their natural fear of people and start to associate people with food. Save our Bears by being wildlife aware.

Campsites in Merritt BC

Summer camping! Photo by Tania Stewart.

Family campground and campsites

Camping & Kids! Photo Tania Stewart.

“WHILE OUT IN THE BACKCOUNTRY, STAY RESPECTFUL OF ALL WILDLIFE!” TANIA STEWART

Wildlife Law

Do not feed the BEARS!  Furthermore, this applies to all animals.  And did you know that feeding wildlife in a national park or historic site will get you charged under the Canada National Parks Act? Whether feeding them directly or indirectly by leaving unattended food or garbage for them to sniff out and find. So put away your food. 

Merritt fishing in the Nicola Valley

Wes David and the Fishing the Wild West TV Show. Photo credit Wes David.

Campsites in the Nicola Valley

Alleyne Lake. Photo Tania Stewart.

Wildlife Photo’s

Albeit it is exhilarating to see a moose, bear, deer, or even a fox while visiting our campsites and campgrounds in Merritt BC. Capturing that photo or video can make your day. It has made mine on many occasions. Distance and respect for wildlife are key, this is their home. Make sure to share your amazing shots to on our websites or tag us on Facebook at @experiencenicolavalley!

Birdwatching in Merritt BC Canada

Wildlife capture. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Nature Walking/hiking

Hiking on the trails while camping is the best. Being aware that the best time to set out on a hike or picnic is best served after breakfast and before the supper bell rings. Equally, just like us, wildlife/animals are active early morning and around sunset.  Furthermore, never go alone, carry a lot of water, make noise, bear spray, bug dope, and know your surroundings. 

Sightseeing in Merritt BC Canada

Hiking Trail. Photo by Robert Neil.

Give wildlife space-Stay alert and be aware of your surroundings-travel in groups

Campfires while Camping in the Nicola Valley

Always check and be up-to-date on fire bans and restrictions when visiting our valley. Call or google wildfire gov for updated information.  British Columbia is a large geographically diverse province. Therefore, decisions on when and where to implement fire bans and restrictions are made by B.C.’s six regional fire centers. Wildfire prevention starts with us and one little match could ignite our backwoods. So be mindful of your fires, cigarettes and other flammable items.

Report Fires

Important to always make sure your campfire is out. And in some cases put out a negligent camper’s fire. Always report any fire. Therefore we can continue to enjoy our great outdoors and bask in its tranquility, 

“There’s no wi-fi in the mountains, but you’ll find a not better connection.” Unknown

Mosquitoes 

Campsites and campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada are truly one of the best ways to take a vacation. But the Mosquitoes! Take along a few bundles of sage the next time you go camping. Then, when the sun is setting and the campfire is going, burn a bit of sage with your fire. Or for a longer-lasting effect, set the stage on fire and let it smolder and smoke by the edge of the campfire. Moreover, mosquitoes are repelled by sage smoke and are a lot healthier than bug spray. 

Organizing Skills

Keeping your food secure and organized is important while camping. Organizing with storage is life-saving not to mention less stressful. Using bins, and sleeping bags for storage in tents,  Keeps your site organized and odor-free. Important leave no trace you were there. 

How to Find Amazing Camping Spots

Simply go to Experience Nicola Valley  and for all the information you will need to plan your camping trip to your specific summer adventure. Looking for a fishing adventure, speed boating one or a kayaking drift. Choosing the right campsite is the first step, getting there is the fun part, and the rest is just a load of memories. 

Campgrounds in Merritt BC Canada

Camping, campsites in the Nicola Valley Canada

Merritt BC Gardening

Canadian’s Love to Garden in the Nicola Valley

Gardening Tips in Merritt BC 

Gardening in Merritt BC is about finding the right combination of sunlight, fertile soil, and water to make your plants thrive. It’s also about fulfilling your passion for life and nature, so select plants wisely, especially ones you can love back. Use available community resources if you can. Give life to our Merritt BC Canada stores like they are to your garden. Garden local as they say, and in no time you’ll have a beautiful garden, filled with colors, and smells no matter what level of gardening experience you have.   

Gardening in Merritt BC Canada

Sell your produce at a local farmer’s market. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Make Gardening in Merritt BC Enjoyable

Therefore, a good rule of a green thumb, is to not be intimidated by the process of how to start a garden and care for it successfully. Although,  there is a lot of groundwork involved, it is not work. It is quality time outdoors for body and mind. Deciding to the garden is the easy part, but the biggest decision is going ahead with the project. The benefits of “reaping what you sow” will lift you to the highest level of calling yourself a “Master Gardener” 

Gardening in Merritt spectators

Invite friends over! Photo by Tania Stewart

Advice for Essential Gardening in Merritt 

Do not overthink it. Planting and deciding to start a garden is easy, the upkeep is the hard part, but the result is truly magical.   

Gardening Merritt BC

Gardening In the Nicola Valley. Photo by Tania Stewart

Gardening In the Nicola Valley

It’s all about the dirt! Picture by Tania Stewart

Garden Location in the Nicola Valley

Starting a garden is just like real estate. It’s all about the location. Knowing where to plant, what to plant, and most importantly when to seed is crucial. Start by paying attention to the sunlight, where is it in the morning and where it goes in the evening. Secondly, how to space your seeds and what should be near what? Should your carrots be neighbors with lettuce or spuds?  Moreover, know your zone. This means, that the higher the zone number, the warmer the climate. If a plant is for zone 4, and your garden is zone 2, that plant will not survive. Most edible plants, including many vegetables, herbs, and fruits, need at least 6 hours of sun to thrive.

 

A Local Tip: “Never plant if there is snow on Iron Mountain, or before May long weekend,” Tania Stewart.

 

Invest in Good Gardening Tools

I cannot state enough how the right tools make working in your garden a pleasure instead of a chore. Here is some basic gardening equipment to get you going. 

  • Garden hoe
  • Scuffle hoe
  • Dirt rake
  • Leaf rake
  • Garden Shovel or D handle Shovel
  • Hand tools
  • Rototiller

Water Source

The best gardening tip you’ll ever get is to plan your new garden near a water source. Make sure you can run a hose to your garden site, so you don’t have to lug water into it each time your plants get thirsty. Fact, the best way to tell if plants need watering is to push a finger an inch down into the soil (that’s about one knuckle deep). If it’s dry, it’s time to water.

Birds Merritt BC

Water well. Photo by Tania Stewart

Flowers in Merritt BC

Bee’s love flowers. Photo by Tania Stewart

Do Not Forget To Plant Flowers

Bees need flowers. Throughout the world, people have taken on the fight for the survival of our “Bees”.  Merritt BC Canada is no different. Every day more and more people are becoming more aware of how important these hard-working honey makers are to our survival. Not to mention, without bees, the availability and diversity of fresh produce would decline substantially, and human nutrition would likely suffer. For more information on this subject,  Bee/honey makers Experience in the Nicola Valley

Flowering plants in Nicola Valley

Some flowers block pests. Photo by Tania Stewart

Sunflowers and Bees

Sunflowers are essential for gardens. Photo by Tania stewart

It Is All In The Soil

What do you really know about your garden soil? If you can try to invest in nutrient-rich soil. Test your soil to see if it’s acidic, alkaline, or neutral PH. Is it rocky, sandy clay, or just a mix of all? Does your soil have a good amount of basic nutrients?  This is something my avid gardening father takes seriously. 

Gardening as a family

Watching the garden grow. Photo by Tania Stewart

Learn your frost dates

Planting too early (or late) in the season can spell disaster for your garden. You need to know the last average spring frost date for your area so you don’t accidentally kill plants by putting them out prematurely. It’s also good to know your first average fall frost date so that you get your plants harvested or moved indoors before fall frost damages them.  

Gardening plot in merritt bc

Tomato plants. Photo by Tania Stewart

Tomato plants in Merritt BC

Safe Tomato plants. Picture by Tania Stewart

 

One can not stress the importance of your “Planting Groundwork!” Take extra care in the beginning, and the result is what you reap.

 

The result.

Planting with Care

Once you have done the groundwork, next is planting. Do not hesitate to ask neighbors where to purchase your seeds. Albeit the rule of thumb when planting seeds is roughly 3 times deep as the size of the seed. Unless otherwise directed on the package. When transplanting, usually you will plant at the same depth as they were growing in the pot. Important to note, that tomatoes can be planted deeper.

Gardening and lawn care

Garden maintenance. Photo by Tania Stewart

Preparing a garden in BC Canada

Preparing your garden. Photo by Tania Stewart

 

Consider containers when gardening Merritt BC.

When space is at a premium, look to containers. You can grow many plants in pots, including vegetables, herbs, flowers, fruit trees, berries, and shrubs. Planting tomatoes can be tricky. Using potting containers is sometimes ideal for small spaces as well as maturing them enabling their survival. Strawberries can also thrive well in containers. 

 

Strawberry net. Photo by Tania Stewart

Warning!

Every garden, may want to cover and protect from winged bandits! Birds love the sweetness of the berry, covering them will protect your plants and keep deer from eating the flowers and destroying the growth. Most important this is a safe non-chemical deterrent to natural pests. If you spray it, you will eat it!

 

Bird Bandits. Photo by Tania Stewart

Mulch is Great

Weeds suck the life out of plants, mulch helps reduce these nasty veg killers. Apply a layer of mulch that’s 2 to 3 inches deep around each plant. Help reduce weeds by blocking out the sun and reduce moisture loss through evaporation, so you have to be waterless.  

 

Gardening Merritt BC.

Reap what you sow. Photo by Tania Stewart

Reaping mounds of veggies

Nurture your garden in the Nicola Valley

Take it from me, my father is the best fertilizer, he is the garden’s shadow. Most important is to be prepared to make time to tend to your plants. Depending on the size of your garden, time requirements may range from a few minutes of weeding, and watering, to a full-time day job. Watering your plants, as a rule of thumb need around one inch of water per week. 

 

Be proud of your endeavors. Picture by Tania Stewart

Potato salad?

 

Gardening Merritt BC.

Truly the first fruit is the Strawberry. Moreover, being the first and the sweetest. June welcomes this favorite berry.  British Columbia has native strawberries throughout, just waiting for you to pick and enjoy their a burst of sweet flavor.  

Starting with great soil, with regular water, will make your plants very happy. Bill Stewart.

 

berry picking merritt bc

Strawberry delight. Photo by Tania Stewart

pie, home made, strawberry custard

Completely homemade strawberry custard pie.

Bugs and Disease 

When gardening in the Nicola Valley beware of bugs. Moreover, bugs are more attracted to plants that are stressed or in some way deficient. If you have healthy, well-nourished plants, your pest problems should be minimal. Noteworthy, for most problems, there’s an organic solution. If you’re going through all the effort to grow your food, why would you want to put toxins on it? Overwatering is almost more harmful than underwatering. 

 

Happy times! Photo by Tania Stewart

What’s up! Photo Tania Stewart

In conclusion Gardening Merritt BC.

 Extra produce from your garden? Try selling produce at your local farmers’ market or donate to the food bank.

Gardening in Merritt BC Canada

Nicola Valley Gardens, Gardening, and Gardeners 

 

#merrittmatters

National & Provincial AWARD WINNING Travel and Tourism Guides

nicola valley talk show

“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

Fishing Derby in Merritt, British Columbia, Canada

2022 Fishing Tournament in the Nicola Valley at Peter Hope Lake

Special Guest Wes David of Fishing The Wild West TV Show

The May 14th Merritt Fishing Derby held at Peter Hope Lake in the Nicola Valley was a testament to our motto, “a lake a day for as long as you stay”.  The first derby of the year in these parts was hosted by the group at Tourism Nicola Valley – Experience Nicola Valley.  

 

Merritt Fishing Derby – Spirit of Merritt

Considering what we have gone through in the last 2 years as a community, it was, in essence, a day of reckoning. It was good to see  the “Spirit of Merritt” that we have all grown to learn and love. Now more will know how good we have it here.

Nicola Valley Draws People From Across BC To Fish

Approximately 50 fishermen and fisherwomen registered for the Tourism Nicola Valley – Experience Nicola Valley fishing tournament. Many from out of town. Some coming from areas like Kamloops, Richmond, Abbotsford, Langley, Chilliwack, Hope, Lac Le Jeune and other BC communities. Therefore, it was a few days of welcomed revenues to our local pubs, restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations and others.

merritt fishing derby

People gather for sharing some fishing tales. Photo Credit Wes David.

trout fishing

Measuring fish for prizing. Photo Credit: Greg Girard

Day Of Fishing Starts

The fishing enthusiasts started arriving at the derby base camp on Peter Hope Lake at 5 am on May 14th. Some stayed in town , while others camped out at one of our many wilderness campgrounds. Consequently, they fished until 5pm in the sun, most of the day.

Fishing Sun Or Rain Is Fun

In the evening the rains moved in, just in time for the award ceremony announcing the winners. Special guest Wes David presented the winners with their prizes. Many took advantage of his truck and boat on display for photos and selfies.

Wes David

Wes David and cameraman Chuck. Photo Credit: Greg Girard

Fishing Celebrity – Wes David

Wes David is the host of the Fishing the Wild West TV Show. The show generates 33 million viewers a year across many specialty and fishing networks. Wes, and his cameraman, Chuck, both avid fishermen, spent 4 days fishing the lakes of our valley for an upcoming TV show about fishing the Nicola Valley. A well deserved accolade celebrating our lakes and the natural outdoors. Country lakes is what we do well. Country anything is what we do always when it comes to adventure and music. 

 

First Class Lake Fishing Opportunity

Merritt fishing

Wes David and the Fishing the Wild West TV Show. Photo Credit: Wes David

Tourism Nicola Valley strongly believes, Merritt should benefit from and grow a responsible and productive recreational fishing season in the valley to assist in generating new money for the community. “BC residents spent $102 per fishing day! Canadian non-residents spent over $181 per fishing day, and International non-resident anglers spent over $334 per fishing day.” 

What Does Fishing Mean To The Valley

Average it out at $204 a day, add 100 new fishermen a month who fish our lakes and each one stays for a 3 day weekend… and when you add it all up it equates to $61,200 of new money invested into our community in one month. 

“There is no end to the rainbow trout in the Nicola Valley BC. Merritt & Nicola Valley BC is truly a trout anglers’ paradise! I spent 2 days fishing 2 of the 200+ lakes in the area for rainbow trout and I’ve never caught and released so many rainbow trout in a single day in my life”

Merritt Fishing Derby Winners

merritt fishing derby winners

Winners pose with Wes David. Photo Credit: Greg Girard

At the end of the day, the prizes were announced with first prize going to Derek Poitras, second prize to Colin Mitchell and 3rd prize was awarded to Nathan Lewis. In the youth category the prize went to Skylar Vilac.

All in all, the winners of the day, were all of us who came together, in sun and rain, to laugh, smile and share fishing tales. Thank you to all who attended and may the fishing Gods be with you. Come back soon.

Merritt Fishing Derby

2022 Fishing Tournament in the Nicola Valley at Peter Hope Lake

#merrittmatters

National & Provincial AWARD WINNING Travel and Tourism Guides

nicola valley talk show

“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

Off-Roading in Merritt BC Canada

 Extreme Outdoor Terrain Action 4×4 Sport

Off-roading Adventure Seeker’s Wanted!

Off-roading in Merritt BC is a top destination spot for all adventure seekers who like a challenge. Moreover, the Merritt BC region provides miles of  trails, extreme terrain action for all 4×4 sporting enthusiasts. With moderate temperatures year-round,  the Nicola Valley is a first choice for many who seek off road extreme 4x4ing. The Nicola Valley boasts endless back country roads, which offer gentle slopes for beginners or steep climbing mountain trails for the brave.  Come and discover some of the most beautiful, scenic, natural place’s found right here in Merritt BC. Canada. I guarantee it will be a most enjoyable outdoor experience.  

Off-Roading Merritt BC

Picture time. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Off-Roading Merritt BC

Scenic beauty. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Sightseeing While Off-Roading in Merritt BC 

Off-roading around Merritt BC will leave you breathless.  With such amazing scenic beauty to see, old growth trees, towering mountain peaks, rock bluffs, grass plains, hidden lakes, wildlife, and the odd cow. Take some time to discover those mountain top lakes that seem to be untouched with exceptional fishing. Certain waterfalls, lakes, mountains, and other natural beauties might be off-limits unless you have an off-road vehicle to drive you there. Allowing you to take a dip in a secluded lake or waterfall, say what! Hiking is great, but to get to some of these places would take days.  

Mountain views while off roading in Merritt BC

Mountain Views. Photo by Robert Neil

Nicola Valley wildlife

Mountain goat. Picture by Robert Neil

Off-road vehicles is anticipated to grow at 7% CAGR between 2021 and 2027. Market Growth

4x4ing in Merritt BC

Jeep Wrangler Style. Photo by Tania Stewart.

4x4ing Back Country Roads Summer & Spring

Albeit most love to go off-roading in the summer months and the spring. Showcasing fresh buds on the trees, birds, bee’s, bear’s all waking up to the warm sun. Truly has to be one of the best times for getting out and hitting the back roads. Although off-roading in Merritt BC, Canada is a year round sport. Many people will find that the warmer months are more ideal. Nature enthusiasts will love the abundance of wildlife found in the back roads. Summer is great for overlanding off-roading. Taking your time with longer trips, staying at campsites, sleeping in tents, or just outside under the stars. Truly bare necessities! 

Birding in Merritt BC

Wildlife. Photo by Tania Stewart

Wildlife while Off-Roading in Nicola Valley

Bear Aware. Photo Tania Stewart

Nicola Valley Off-Roading in The Fall 

Authentic natural environments is my favorite time to go off-roading. Getting out on the back country roads is truly exhilarating for all extreme adventurists. Along with being a bit cooler, fall colors will take you by surprise. Noteworthy, the Nicola Valley is renowned for its Indian Summers, with comfortable warm days and cool nights. Which makes this an ideal time for day trips, picnics, hiking, and just enjoying the scenic beauty. Rocky off-roading in the fall is a lot of fun, but may require a certain skill level. 

Fall mountain top trees. Photo by Tania Stewart

Off-roading in the Winter 

When temperatures start to dip and snow is starting to cover your favorite trails in the Nicola Valley. This doesn’t mean you have to put your Jeep or yourself in hibernation for the winter. Truly, 4×4 off-roading in the snow can be an extremely enjoyable, extreme adventure for those who are up for the challenge. Even if you a planning a two hour tour in the back country or an all day one. Or like us, go long into the night.  

Backcountry near Merritt BC

10m from downtown Merritt. Picture by Tania Stewart

Jeep in Merritt winter

Spring time 4×4. Picture by Tania Stewart

Off-Roading Merritt BC

Discover some of the most beautiful, scenic, natural place right here in Merritt BC, Canada. Picture by Tania Stewart

Off-roading weather conditions in Merritt BC 

When off-roading in the winter, know what you are up against. Understand and be able to identify the different types of snow. Furthermore traversing different snow consistencies will require different driving techniques.  For example, there is hard, icy snow located on north-facing slopes. Soft snow that is sitting in the sun. Knowing that trying to stay on top of soft and dry snow is often harder than driving over wet and heavy snow. Truly plan your course accordingly before embarking out in the backcountry.

backcountry roads in Merritt BC

Spring Snow. Picture Tania Stewart

Nicola Valley mountain scenery

Mountain views. photo by Tania Stewart

Must Have – 4×4 Compass

night skies in  Merritt BC

Spectacular sunsets. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Useful Tip

Airing down your tires is an effective way to increase the amount of traction and displacement your vehicle has on slippery, icy surfaces. Moreover by reducing the amount of air in your tires, more surface area of the tire will touch the ground.  As a result, gives a higher level of traction and displacement. Further, it is easier to stay on top of the snow,  preventing you from spinning out and digging yourself into a hole. 

looking for sasquatch in merritt bc

Searching for Bigfoot. Photo Tania Stewart.

Nicola Valley gravel roads

Back roads adventure.

Snow Tires in the Nicola Valley

Investing in a set of snow tires is perhaps the best way to avoid skidding and sliding on icy trails. Snow tires are specifically designed with deep treads that have larger gaps to optimize traction when driving on snow and ice. Remember, if the road is slippery, you will have less traction. Your tires simply can not grip the ground well when it is wet.

bigfoot in backcountry

Bigfoot lives here! Photo by Tania Stewart.

The lighter your Jeep is, the easier it will be to stay on top of the snow and avoid sinking into the soft surface.

Family day in the backcountry

Family fun time! Photo by Tania Stewart.

wilderness adventures in the Nicola Valley

Lake cool off! Picture by Tania Stewart

Know Your Limits

I can not stress the importance of knowing your limits. Moreover know your vehicles limits. If you are just starting to adventure in the back country. Try low lying roads on dry tracks. Even better, bring a well seasoned off-roader with you or team up with a well seasoned off-roader. Fact,  walkie-talkies are a must. Bring a friend, preferably in their own vehicle.  If you have a break down it could be many hours before anyone finds you. Cell phones do not work here. Keep water, food, flashlights, long distant radio, extra clothing even a flare gun. 

night time exploring in nicola valley

Back roads adventure. Picture Tania Stewart.

Pay Attention to Traction

The biggest hurdle beginner off-roaders face is figuring out how traction works. Traction is one of the most important things you need to understand when off-roading. When you lose traction, you run the risk of having your truck spin out of control or go off the trail. 

Traction basically means how well your truck’s tires are gripping the ground. That is why tires with deeper tread have better traction—the deeper tread allows the tires to better grip the ground. Important to know,  if the road is slippery, you will have less traction. Tires simply can not grip the ground well when it is wet. The same goes for rocks. The less traction you have, the more important it is to accelerate smoothly. 

nature in Merritt BC Canada

Hitting the trails. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Merritt BC sunset

Sunsets are the best! Photo by Tania Stewart

Practice More Often

Get as much practice as you can. The more you practice, the better you will be at off-roading. You don’t have to practice every day—you might have obligations like work to take care of. However, you can set aside a few hours every weekend to practice your off-roading skills. Find trails near you that you can use for practicing. 

In Conclusion

Discover some of the most beautiful, scenic, natural place’s found right here in Merritt BC. Canada.  If you like adventure and challenges, you will enjoy off-roading here in the Nicola Valley. Meet you on the trail.

sunset in merritt bc canada

Scenic view 4×4 action. Photo by Tania Stewart

Off-Roading in Merritt BC Canada

Nicola Valley 4x4ing

#merrittmatters

National & Provincial AWARD WINNING Travel and Tourism Guides

nicola valley talk show

“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC

Merritt’s Top Fishing Holes

 Top Fishing Lakes & Camping Spots Within the Nicola Valley

 

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC – Merritt’s Top Fishing Holes 2022 – Fishing & Camping surrounding Merritt BC. truly will provide you with a wide range of different species of fish when fishing in Merritt BC lakes. Along with unique desert-like temperatures and mild winters provides 12 months an extreme “Year Round” fishing destination spot.  Because most lakes are located within an hour drive of  Merritt, truly attracts a large number of anglers, campers, and even day-trippers. Furthermore,  boasting friendly locals who are always willing to help, answer questions and point you in the right direction to the best fishing holes.  Fishing & camping in Merritt BC. is your next destination spot here in Canada.

“Only problem you may face is choosing the lake!” Tania Stewart.

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC

Lazy summer days on Lundbom Lake. Pic by Tania Stewart.

 5 Favorite Fishing Spots

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC at Harmon Lake

With a small forested site for launching small boats, Harmon Lake is the spot for fishing & camping in Merritt BC. Known especially  for fly fishing rainbow trout, but also as a great place to camp. There are graveled camping sites for tents and motorhomes, a boat launch and parking area for day trippers. On site there are horse shoe pits, and a great family environment with a 24 – 7 site host. Harmon Lake is located in the beautiful Kane Valley, with lake trails, hiking paths, scenic views and to top it off, only 20 minutes from Merritt. Furthermore, “Dog friendly” to boot!

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC at Lundbom Lake 

Truly this recreational spot is ideal for camping, fishing, horseback riding, ATV/dirt biking, along with swimming. Located only minutes from Merritt, hence ideal for provisions or a shop-about in historical downtown. Additionally it is dog friendly, welcomes horses along with other amenities. The most popular species you find here are Rainbow Trout. Again, please inquire where you can fish and make sure to follow local rules and regulations. Lundbom Lake’s surrounding area provides excellent outdoor recreations that will provide you with countless trails, breathtaking scenery, while being only 15m from Merritt.  This recreation site is very popular and offers a variety of sites, with sunny ones or shady ones. Importantly, many sites can accommodate fairly large units. Albeit,  this is one of my “Top Fishing Holes” in Merritt BC.

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC.

Bring your horses! Pic by Tania Stewart.

 

Dragon Flies Merritt's Top Fishing Holes

Dragon Flies at Alleyne Lake. Picture by Tania Stewart

Kentucky-Alleyne Lakes for Fishing and Camping

Kentucky-Alleyne Provincial Park, is a beautiful lake with a surreal turquoise color. Popular for hiking, camping, fishing, and paddling. Hike around Kentucky Lake is kid-friendly and is a great hike for families. Easily accessible, located within a Provincial Park, these two lakes are ideal for anglers, hence making this a perfect place for family fishing. Interesting to note,  Kentucky is stocked annually with 8000 Pennask Rainbows. Ideal for trolling with small lures and spinning gear is the most popular method used on the lake.  Kentucky is considered to be somewhat slow, however it quite often produces large trout in the 4-5 lb. range. Furthermore great for summer kayaking, swimming, or just dipping your toes. 

Alleyne Lake Kayaking

Kayaking/fishing on Alleyne Lake. Photo by Tania Stewart

Alleyne Lake swimming and day trips

Fishing, swimming, camping! All is Good.

 

Alleyne Lake Kayaking

Kayaking Lundbom Lake. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Nicola Lake – Kokanee, rainbow trout, and burbot can be found in this large cold lake

Located 15m from Merritt makes  Nicola Lake one of the most recognized and favorite for anglers. Surrounded by mountains, deep crisp water is ideal for great fishing. Additionally for campers, Monck Park has full amenities located in a Provincial Park. With a boat launch for campers along with a sandy shaded beach, hiking trails. and a small general store. When not fishing, Nicola Lake offers a  wide assortment of recreational activities including camping, picnicking, swimming, fishing, boating, water-skiing, wind-surfing and hiking. 

Merritt's Top Fishing Holes Merritt BC.

Large deep lake. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Nicola Lake in Merritt BC Canada

Nicola Lake fishing dock. Photo courtesy Tania Stewart.

In addition to providing recreational opportunities, Monck Park protects a ponderosa pine, bunchgrass ecosystem and a volcanic rock cliff landscape.

Monck Park Beach

Monck Park Beach. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC.

Perfect shade for picnics. Picture by Tania Stewart.

For the Love of Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC

Swimming in Merritt BC Canada

Come and experience! Photo by Tania Stewart.

Peter Hope Lake in the Nicola Valley 

Added bonus Peter Hope Lake is located off Hwy 5A, Peter Hope is well known for fly fishing, stocked with Pennask rainbow trout that are known to put up a good fight. Bring a lot of bug dope, hence the abundance of insects. Peter Hope Lake is a popular site for fishing and camping. The campsite is located along the north shore of the lake and can accommodate motorhomes and large 5th wheels. There is a mix of sunny sites with a few shady sites also available. There are 2 boat launches available for use and a rustic playground for kids under adult supervision plus dog friendly.

Paska Lake in Nicola Valley

Paska Lake-Shirley Reynolds Photo

Brook Trout

This lake is fished year round, although most popular in fall/winter. Being aggressive and challenging will test your angler skills.  Try using small spinners, worms, or bugs that are in the area. Grasshoppers or mayflies help, although harder to locate during the summer. Being a non-native species in British Columbia, these fish are stocked in selected lakes by Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. Furthermore they are also stocked at the fingerling or yearling stage. Interesting to note, being sterile, these fish utilize all of their energy on growth so they can also become trophy-sized fish in a short span of time.

Fishing lures in Merritt BC

Big Fishing Story. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Rainbow Trout

Albeit Rainbow Trout as being one of  the most popular fish in the Nicola Valley. While found in most lakes, during the summer months Rainbow Trout will head to the colder deep water’s. You can find them closer to the bottom of the lake. Try using bright colored spoons, half-back nymph, and small leech patterns. Spring/fall trolling lucky bugs will work. Insects, leeches, small fish, crayfish and mussels are just a few delicious treats a rainbow trout likes to munch on. And likes to live in cool freshwater.

Did you know? The rainbow trout is a member of the salmon family and can get quite large. The largest recorded rainbow trout was 25.8 kilograms! Tania Stewart.

Julie Pollard kissing fish

Kiss the Fish! Photo Julie Pollard

Ponderosa Sports Tackle

Ponderosa Sports Tackle. Pic Tania Stewart.

Kokanee Salmon

Generally found hiding amongst the weeds and shoals, these curious fish want to know what is going on in their environment. Active when windy,  camouflaging themselves in the waves. Fly rod with a small nymph or lucky bug lure is best for Kokanee, as they like to jump into the air while hooked. Prepare for the fight. Kokanee defiantly provide an excellent sport angling experience, while being a tasty treat. Kokanee are also forage for bigger fish such as Rainbow Trout, Lake Trout, and Burbot. Due to this, Kokanee are programmed to flee from larger fish. Fast aggressive flashers or dodgers moving through the water can present a threat to Kokanee causing them to take off.

Fact – These chrome beauties are a popular sport fish in BC, only second to Rainbow Trout.

Camping in Canada

My friend Joanne caught a beauty at our site.

Merritt's Top Fishing Holes

Photo curtesy of Tom Reynolds.

The average size of Kokanee in BC ranges from 7 to 10 inches, but can reach over 20 inches in healthy ideal Kokanee fisheries. They are a fragile fish and do not handle catch and release well and their mortality rate is high even when handled and released the correct way. It is encouraged to limit your catch to feeding your family at dinner, not to just fill your freezer. 

Fact- The word Kokanee comes from the Kootenay First Nation word meaning “red fish”.

Fishing & Camping in Merritt BC

Best Fishing Holes in BC

 

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Nicola Valley Travel and Tourism Guides

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

Living in Merritt BC

Exploring Near Merritt in the Nicola Valley

Living life in the Shuswap Lake region of British Columbia Canada

Living in Merritt BC  – For the better part of two years Experience Nicola Valley has been providing an amazing amount of information on what Merritt and the Nicola Valley has to offer.  Do you want to know about camping in the area?  We have many stories that will spike your interest in our local camping such as Harmon Lake in the Kane Valley or Paska Lake off of Hwy 97D.

With so much to do when living in Merritt BC I could not possibly cover it all in this article.  However the good news is that you came to a key document that will provide you access to all the great things going on.  After you have read this story you can zip over to Experience Nicola Valley for more information.

For booking information and other information on events, etc visit Experience Merritt.

Other Reasons for Living in Merritt BC

Besides all the great things to do in Merritt and the Nicola Valley you are only a hop, skip and jump away from many great tourist destinations.  For example, the Okanagan is only one hour away or Kamloops is only 45 minutes away. Whereas other destinations such as the Shuswap (2 hours), the Cariboo (3 hours) or Vancouver(3 Hours) are within a comfortable reach.

The North Shuswap

This summer we spent our vacation in Magna Bay.  This area is on the north side of the lake at the west end.  We were very lucky and scored the best value in all of the Shuswap. We were able to rent a cabin for a very reasonable price.

Magna Bay Cabin - Living in Merritt BC Canada

Magna Bay Cottage- Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

Like wise, the inside of the cabin was very comfortable as well.

Cottage Living Room at Magna Bay Vacations

Cottage Living Room- Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

The place was very clean and the kitchen was reasonably equipped.  However it was not the ritz.  Some upgrades to the wall paper and some of the painted areas would help.  However these minor imperfections did not stop us from enjoying our stay.

Things to Do in the Shuswap

We were visiting the Shuswap during the height of the forest fire season and encountered a great deal of smoke.  However, this did not deter us as we made the best of the various breaks in the smoke and did the following things:

The Beach

The beach was just across the street which made it  just a short walk of about 200 meters.  Therefore we were able to  enjoy the warm lake with swimming and using our floaties.

Ross Creek Community Park

Ross Creek Community Park – Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

Hiking

There are many places to hike in the North Shuswap.  Of the many choices we did three spots.  The first one was at Tsutswecw Provincial Park.  This park is home to the viewing for the famous Adams River Salmon Run.

Tsutswecw Provincial Park

Tsutswecw Provincial Park – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

Adams River

Adams River – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our second choice was Scotch Creek Provincial Park where we walked the lake shore trail.  The Beach at this park is a real treat.

Scotch Creek Provincial Park

Scotch Creek Provincial Park – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

Golfing

The North Shuswap is home to the Talking Rock Golf Course.  The course is actually on the shores of Little Shuswap Lake at the Quaaout Lodge.

The setting is truly spectacular and the course provides a nice challenge.

Golf at Talking Rock

Golf at Talking Rock. Photo credit – Tom Reynolds

Besides a regular golf course we took in the Mini Golf at Scotch Creek.  While we had fun the course was in need of some serous repair.

Mini Golf at Scotch Creek

Mini Golf at Scotch Creek – Photo credit – Tom Reynolds

Quality Cabin Time

We actually spent most of our eating at the cabin.  Each of the five adults took a turn cooking a meal.  Therefore if you did the cooking you didn’t have to clean up.  This way the work load was spread out.  It made for great meals that were not burdensome on one person.

However, we did go out twice.  The first time to the Hub Pub in Scotch Creek.  We were entertained by the Dueling Keyboards while eating delicious unique pub food.

The second time we actually didn’t go out for dinner but ordered pizza from Roosters Pizzeria in Anglemont BC.  We expected the shop to be on the main road but it actually was high up the hillside in a residential subdivision.  The drive was well worth it as the pizza was delicious and it went well with watching the BC Lion’s game.

Good Things Come to an End

Despite the smoke we had a great time and were sorry to be leaving.  On the other hand we are thankful for living in Merritt BC Canada because we have quick access to many fun locations.

Living in Merritt BC

Exploring Near Merritt

Shuswap Lake BC

The blogs are part of a comprehensive marketing program sponsored by Tourism Nicola Valley.  The program was developed by Eh! Canada Travel . 

Nicola Valley Travel and Tourism Guides

nicola valley talk show

“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program. It is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region.