Canoeing Okanagan Mountain Park - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-28-2012, 03:50 PM Thread Starter
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Default Canoeing Okanagan Mountain Park

Just looking for any advice and opinion's concerning a planned trip for 6 to 8 canoeist and kayaker's for May long weekend possibly. Where to put in for example? North or south of the park? How crowded would the wilderness campgrounds be? How many people can camp in those six campgrounds? Any interesting site's along the shore to check out? Weather like in May there? Any backcountry fee's? Stuff like that.

Thank's in advance.

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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-28-2012, 04:25 PM
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Unfortunately I can't tell you m uch about water access since I generally went in on foot for day hikes, and runs.

On foot, I would say that the park is generally very empty...within a km or 2 of the access points, you may find 4 or 5 parties on a busy day...get farther than that, and you barely see anyone.

Unfortunately for you though, I just hope you don't have to deal with the boaters...it might not be quite as bad in May...come summer the lake abounds with drunken boaters.

I'm pretty sure there is a marine camping fee, though I don't know if that applies to canoes. I hope they give canoes a freebie, though probably not! LOL



Oh the fun antics of Okanagan boaters:

http://www.castanet.net/news/Kelowna...-craft-collide

Gossip on the street was that both parties were idiots and both sides had stories full of holes.

PS. If you walk into any swampy bush at that time of year, look for ticks. You'll have em! Some neat rocks and bluffs to climb and scramble around on in the Commando bay area.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 12:05 PM
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Andrew, sounds like a good plan. I've never camped there but have hiked and boated in the area and can help you a wee bit.

The closest put-ins (~3 km) are right across the lake, either Peachland (there's a free boat launch on Hwy 97 just south of Beach Avenue/Princeton Avenue intersection) or Okanagan Lake Park. Otherwise, put-ins north or south of the park are about the same distance--Bertram Creek Regional Park to the north, or the Naramata pier at the old fruit packing plant. Both are about 10 km to Squally Point (the public boat launch at end of 4th St. adds another km or so). There's also a public launch site on Lakeshore Road in Summerland.

Personally I think the shoreline north from Naramata is the most scenic.

There's also water access at the very end of North Naramata Road, just south of the park. Hey, that's a very scenic drive too!

Your biggest problem is finding overnight parking. The parks are out, I don't know about Peachland's bylaws. Again, your best bet would be off-beach parking near Naramata wharf.

Weather? Better than New West, usually pretty darn nice but could easily be unsettled. The winds blow up or down the lake--I wouldn't want to guess which way--and are probably strongest on the Kelowna side of Squally Point (there's a hint right there).

Camping--Commando and Buchan Bay are the most popular, I'd say they're busy on May Long. The others would be quieter for sure. Camping fees are $11 per party or per "vessel". Check with Parks on how they'd interpret your group. I know that most for-pay boat launches consider each kayak as a separate vessel, so...

You can vary your trip with some hiking--I'd definitely recommend the hike up Wild Horse Canyon north of Buchan Bay--and some wine tasting, Naramata has dozens of wineries. And it's a neat little place to visit.

All in all, I'd recommend going in from Naramata.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 12:10 PM
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You can also google "kayaking" and "okanagan mountain" and find some informative videos and info.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 04:19 PM
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You may want to send a PM to Nomad as I think he paddled into Commando Bay a couple years ago.

Cheers!
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 03-14-2012, 02:26 PM
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Last May Long weekend a my friend and I (both women in late 30's) put in at Bertram Creek Park, in part because we were certain it was fairly level ground to put in. Was way too far from Okanagan Park for a convenient day trip, not least because it was wickedly windy. One of our Okanagan spring storms came straight north up the lake pushing 2 foot waves in our face.

If you want to come into the park from the north (Kelowna side) I would put in at the parking lot at the trailhead. Steep incline for canoe launch but much closer to landing points in the park.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 03-29-2012, 02:29 PM
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Bobbi, they don't call it "Squally Point" for nothing!!

Thanks for pointing out a possible put-in right at the parking lot. I'll have to check it out this spring.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 04-12-2012, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Pmjwright,

Thanks for all the input. Leaning towards the Naramata wharf access like you suggested then parking nearby. Was sold when you mentioned the most scenic route along the shoreline paddling towards the park. Will camp at one of those bay's and do a dayhike up to Mt. Okanagan via Wildhorse Canyon trail which looks like it connect's. Any idea of the time approximately and k's involved in that hike?

Great idea taking in the wineries too afterwards perhaps being in the area. Any suggestions in particular[?]

DCIPHER Thanks for the warning link. Hope we don't bump into either one of those parties on the water.

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post #9 of (permalink) Old 04-12-2012, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sidetrip

Hey Pmjwright,

Thanks for all the input. Leaning towards the Naramata wharf access like you suggested then parking nearby. Was sold when you mentioned the most scenic route along the shoreline paddling towards the park. Will camp at one of those bay's and do a dayhike up to Mt. Okanagan via Wildhorse Canyon trail which looks like it connect's. Any idea of the time approximately and k's involved in that hike?

Great idea taking in the wineries too afterwards perhaps being in the area. Any suggestions in particular[?]

DCIPHER Thanks for the warning link. Hope we don't bump into either one of those parties on the water.

I hope not either. May is pretty early for the drunken Dbag crowd though, so that's good!

Another warning I'd add is do a tick check after your hike, especially if you go through any of the swampy areas in the canyon. Ticks abound....both the little ones, and the big ones! No big deal, but I'd bring tweezers etc. just in case!

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post #10 of (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 02:33 PM
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Glad to help out, and looking forward to your TR!

I haven't done the hike all the way to the summit so can't advise on time. But May Long should be good timing for wildflowers in the canyon this year; maybe a bit late for balsamroot but good for things like chocolate lilies. And the snags can make for some very interesting photography.

There are so many wineries in Naramata it's crazy. On our last trip we stopped at Soaring Eagle, and while sitting on the deck sipping a nice rose, a pair of ospreys were soaring right above us on the updrafts along the bluffs below the winery. OK they are "fish eagles", but fitting enough for a winery of that name!

Yes ticks are out by May Long...as are some of the idiyuts, but they're usually into ATV/dirtbiking or pre-grad bush parties, not so many on the lakes.

P.S. DECIPHER, drunk boaters in the Shuswap are far more "talented" than Okanagan boaters...they ram their boats at full speed into tall islands...or houseboats!

http://www.canada.com/theprovince/ne...b-1d49e88b42c7

Copper Island...it's hard not to see it.

http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/gallery/html...h/photo_0.html
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by pmjwright



ually into ATV/dirtbiking or pre-grad bush parties, not so many on the lakes.

P.S. DECIPHER, drunk boaters in the Shuswap are far more "talented" than Okanagan boaters...they ram their boats at full speed into tall islands...or houseboats!

http://www.canada.com/theprovince/ne...b-1d49e88b42c7

Copper Island...it's hard not to see it.

http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/gallery/html...h/photo_0.html
Hey don't b a #*(!&^! hater! The island jus ##[email protected] jumped right out in front of us! It was just.....THERE! THat isn't *($&!&!&!*([email protected]!! our fault!

#!&*!&^! YOU!!!!



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