In a previous article I mentioned we were planning our annual or some years semi- annual migration to the southwestern states. In other years we usually leave earlier, January sometime, but this year I thought I would delay our trip to do some snowmobiling.
Our Home at the lake
I should fill you in on our area. We live in a small recreational community on a lake in the Okanagan / Similkameen area of British Columbia. We are 30 km from a paved highway and 40 km from the closest town of Princeton, the elevation of our lake is 1000m or 3200ft.
The rain shadow from the coastal mountain range makes our area very dry, we usually receive very little rain from June to late Sept. and the winters are usually cold with several feet of snow.
In many ways it’s a perfect place for us in our retirement years. The summers from the end of June to Labour day are busy with great weather and the lake is warm enough for swimming. Fishing can be good in the spring. Fishing is good in the creek with brook trout and many different species in the lake.
By far the best attribute of this area is we can ride our ATVs or snowmobiles from our property to the mountain trails 1 km away. We are not supposed to ride on the road but because we are 30 km from pavement and our population during off season is only about a dozen people, we only see the police once or twice a year and usually in the summer time. What a place to live we love it! Just to change the subject a little, if you want to retire you may consider other options as we did.
Just a note for my readers from BC as of June 1st all off road vehicles must be registered ($48 one time fee) if used on crown land, also you must carry liability insurance ($120+-) if you operate your vehicle on crown land or forest service roads.
Back at it
Last year after Christmas it rained for 2 weeks, the temperature was so mild much of the snow melted to such a degree the snowmobile trails had exposed rocks, not fun.
I was choked because in normal years January and February are the months of the best snow accumulations. So we left for the south the middle of January. We had just got settled in Quartzsite, I was checking my e-mails a message came in from a neighbor stating it had been snowing for several days with a couple of feet on the ground. It totaled 5′ buy the end.
Well I was upset so I said to Lynda (my wife), “pack it up we are heading home,” after I woke up after a well placed frying pan, I thought better of the decision. That’s not exactly how it happened but you get the idea.
So this year I was bound and determined to stay home and enjoy some great snowmobiling, but this year turned out worse than last year. It started out great, we had some cold temperatures in Nov. and Dec., the lake froze over earlier than in most recent years. Late Dec. and early January although warm, brought a couple of good snow falls, and a couple of goods snowmobile rides.
It’s the third week of January and its been raining every day, and with spring time temperatures, you could see the snow shrinking, Frosty would be upset. When we left Feb. 25 the roads were bare and dry with scatterings of snow.
We have now left our home in Princeton, BC Canada and headed to our daughter’s property in Langley, adjacent to Vancouver to pick up our travel trailer, visit our children and grand children before we head south. Our trailer will need some last minute preparations like sanitize the fresh water tank, grease the wheel bearings, check the tires and battery etc.
You can check out my list of travel preparations, click here.
So I have done the pre-trip check and we have a flat tire, a pin hole in the side wall and of course it cannot be repaired. My brother-in-law says he uses “green slime” for pin holes etc., but we will be putting 4000 miles on those tire so for $163. + tax I thought it not a good idea to take a chance. A blow out can cause considerable damage that would probably cost more than the tire.
Lynda (my wife) is busy cleaning the interior of our trailer, we had an unwanted visitor through the winter. I did manage to catch him when we were here for Christmas. Mouse trap with peanut butter. Also our trailer seems a magnet for condensation. We have 2 electric heaters set at 10C and that white granular stuff that is supposed remove moisture from the air. Maybe we didn’t have enough. I am going to buy an electric dehumidifier for next winter.
Our trailer sits outside under the trees covered with blue tarps. My hunch is not enough cross ventilation in this very damp climate. Next winter I am going to try to just cover the roof to keep the leaves off. I hope more ventilation is the answer .
The Border line
Our plan is to cross the border Saturday afternoon, stop and pick up some necessities, like dog food for Buddy, and wine for us and oh yeah maybe some food, because the US does not allow even dog food when crossing the border. For more information, see my article on Traveling in your RV click here.
Once we stock up we will head to a casino for the night, there are several in Washington state.
We will be on the road for a few days so I will not be posting as often as usual, and I am not too sure how the internet will be where we will settle.