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Driving from Shuswap Lake to Banff National Park

​Though we had technically been in Canada for 5 days, we were just barely over the border relatively speaking. It was time to put a little distance between us and the border! 

  ​Our route was to take us over to the famous Banff and Jasper National Parks before hopping on the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek, BC.  To get from the Vancouver/Abbotsford area to our next destination, we headed toward Kamloops along the Trans-Canada Highway (Hwy 1) and got our first taste of the mountains.

RVing in Canada - Shuswap Lake Wake Surfing & Lake Louise Avalanches | Go North Ep 5

​Just beyond Kamloops about an hour is Shuswap Lake. We luckily had some friends who had invited us to stay on their property along the lake. This is a spot we probably wouldn’t have even attempted with our fifthwheel, and it ended up being just heavenly! The lake was a beautiful blue and surrounded by mountains. Bald eagles were putting on a show and had a nest in a nearby tree.

  ​The next day, our friend Kory and Denise took us out on their boat to tour the lake they called home, and to do some wake surfing! The water was very cold – Tom and I had thankfully brought our wetsuits! – but it didn’t stop us from taking this opportunity to learn a new water sport with this amazing backdrop.

  Shuswap Lake is about 120square miles (310 kmsq) and 528 ft deep at it’s deepest. In the summer time, people seek out the lake for all types of recreation, including barge concerts, house boat rentals, fishing, or just finding a nice spot on a public beach to spend the day.

Don’t Drive in the Dark

​After departing Kory and Denise’s with many thank-yous for such an awesome time on the lake, we wanted to put some kilometers on. We drove into the night to make our drive to Banff the next morning shorter. This night we learned why we shouldn’t drive at night – not because of the dangers of wildlife at night, which is a very big factor to consider, but because we missed the views as we drove our way to Revelstoke. We could only guess at the towering mountains on either side of the Trans-Canada Highway as we wound up the valley from Sicamousto Revelstoke, where we overnighted at a boat ramp north of town. We woke up there to a spectacular reservoir with snow-capped mountains, and a pang in our stomach that we had missed some amazing scenery.

  ​Fortunately, we were heading to Banff that day, where beautiful scenery was in high supply!

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Deborah Kerr

Friday 17th of January 2020

How fun water surfing!! Oh my that avalanche sounded un-real - that was awesome! I'm glad you were on the other side of the Lake though!!

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