Monday, August 24, 2015

Paddling and Camping on the Columbia River with Kids

We try to do one backcountry paddling trip each summer and wanted to do a river trip this year. We knew we definitely didn't want to do a lake circuit with multiple portages (hard when you use kayaks) and we wanted something casual, fun, and safe for young kids - which meant no glacial mountain lakes! Finding an easy river float was therefore the best option for us and if we chose something that had at least a small current, we wouldn't have to paddle as much.

Easy Paddling on the Columbia River (and yes, the whole trip was this calm!)

I know many families shy away from rivers but we love the Columbia River and once you see the photos in this story, you'll understand why we chose this paddle for a very EASY overnight trip. I shouldn't admit it, but at one point I was floating down the river on a stand up paddleboard, with no PFD on, and while drinking a beer. (stop reading now if this bothers you because we were pretty relaxed with the whole trip.)

Easy relaxed paddling on the Columbia  River (yep, I did an overnight trip on my SUP board!)

Introduction to the Columbia River

The Columbia River is the largest river in the Pacific NW part of North America and starts its journey in Canada at Columbia Lake near the town of Invermere, BC.  From there it flows gently for approximately 300km to Golden and beyond to Kinbasket Lake before it turns south into Washington and Oregon, finishing its journey at the Pacific Ocean.

Friday, August 21, 2015

No More Hot Dogs! How to Plan a Camp Feast

Hamburgers and hot dogs are ok for the first night on a camping trip but then what do you do to shake things up? You can’t live on hot dogs and marshmallows for the whole week long summer vacation camping trip.

We’ve gotten creative over the last few years and have created a bunch of fun theme meals that can be prepared while camping with your family. Camp with a group of families and you can make the meals even bigger as you collaborate to create a giant outdoor feast!

Fajitas for Mexican Fiesta Night at Camp

Mexican Fiesta Night

This is our go to group camping meal because options are endless with this theme. We also love this fun camp feast because it pairs well with a plastic tub of cold Coronas or camp margaritas if you have the ability to use a blender at your campsite. Without a blender, be prepared to bring a large knife for crushing ice or buy crushed ice ahead of time.

To take the feast one step further, buy a piñata and fill it with candy for the kids. Hang it from a tree at the campsite and you’ll have the best camping feast ever!

Making fresh margaritas at camp 

Menu suggestions:  

  • Do it yourself Taco Bar (hard taco shells, soft tortillas, ground beef, chicken, shredded cheese, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes and onions, sour cream, salsa, and guacamole)

  • Chicken or steak fajitas (barbecue the meat on skewers with vegetables and then serve with tortillas, salsa, and sour cream)

  • Corn on the cob

  • Taco salad

  • Cheese quesadillas (these are easy to grill on a barbecue with a lid)

  • Pulled Pork or Chicken tacos (Prepare the meat at home ahead of time and heat in a skillet at camp. Serve with tortillas and taco chips, grated cheese and fresh cilantro)

Pinata night at camp 

Other Fun Theme Nights for Gourmet Camp Feasts

Indian – Butter chicken is easy to prepare at camp in a large skillet over a stove or campfire. Serve with grilled naan bread and rice.

Greek – Chicken, pork or beef souvlaki is easy to make at camp by grilling the meat on skewers and serving with grilled pita bread and Tzatziki sauce. And don’t forget the Greek salad.

Italian – Spaghetti is just as easy to cook at camp as it is a home, the kids love it, and you can save a lot of money by preparing this simple meal rather than going out for dinner after a big day hiking or exploring. We also love making barbecue pizza at camp. Buy flat bread, top with pizza sauce, your favourite toppings and cheese, and then cook over a barbecue with a lid. Tinfoil helps to keep the crust from burning.

Italian Night at Camp with Fresh BBQ Pizza!

Ukrainian – One of our favourite camping meals is perogies with grilled apples, onions and peppers. And here’s a fun idea for you – you can put everything (including the perogies) on skewers and barbecue it together. Serve with sour cream and you have a fun camp meal that’s original and sure to please the kids.

European – This is a very broad category but I love making couscous salad while camping and serving it with simple grilled pork or chicken. It’s great for a hot day when you want a light meal.

Asian – Marinade chicken, pork or beef at home before you leave and stir fry it at camp in a large skillet with fresh veggies. Serve with rice or noodles for a fast meal that requires little prep. (Hint:  you can buy mixed bags of frozen or fresh Asian veggies so that you don’t have to do a lot of work chopping vegetables at camp, and you can add the noodles right to the same skillet in the last few minutes of cooking to save extra pots.)

SW Barbecue – This is another great feast idea for large groups. Hamburgers or steak, corn on the cob, salads of all varieties, and a mixture of Tex-Mex style dishes all combine together for a SW Barbecue themed meal.

Skewers for a SW barbecue night 

For more fun ideas, check out my Camp Cooking board on Pinterest. You’ll never have to eat a hot dog at camp again.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Best of the Columbia Valley (Radium Hot Springs to Invermere - and beyond) - updated 2024

The Town of Radium Hot Springs is easily reached in a three hour drive from Calgary.  It's close enough for a weekend jaunt, or just far enough away to justify spending a full week.  It's also a good jumping off point for exploring the Columbia Valley and the towns of Invermere or Fairmont Hot Springs to the south.

Our second home in the gorgeous Columbia Valley

We love exploring this sunny valley to the west of us in British Columbia and usually visit in spring or autumn when days are getting cooler here in the Rockies.  We've been exploring the valley now for the past 15+ years and I'm starting to feel like it is our second home.

This story is updated annually. 

Camping in the Columbia Valley

We love camping when we're in the Columbia Valley. Below are our fav. spots to camp.

Camping in Radium Hot Springs

In the Radium Hot Springs area we either stay at Redstreak, the Kootenay National Park campground or at Canyon RV Resort, a private campground for those using trailers and RVs. If you're tenting, Redstreak would be your best option here because Canyon does not allow tents.

Camping at Redstreak Campground, Kootenay National Park

Read more:  Why We LOVE Camping at Redstreak Campground, Radium Hot Springs. 

Read more: Active Family Guide to Radium Hot Springs, BC 

We love camping beside Sinclair Creek at the Canyon RV Campground 

And, want to try yurt camping near Radium Hot Springs? Check out this story:

Read: Yurt Camping on top of a Mountain at Radius Retreat 

Yurt camping at Radius Retreat, Radium Hot Springs

And as of 2023, we've discovered a new-to-us favourite RV resort: The RidgeView RV Park and Vacation Club in Radium Hot Springs.

This luxury RV Resort accommodates self contained trailers and RVs (must have a kitchen and bathroom in your unit.) Reservations for non-vacation club members can be made starting in January each year. While the resort is primarily a vacation club for members who purchase their annual vacation week(s,) all guests are welcome to reserve vacant sites for a weekend, a few nights, or even a week.

Each campsite here comes equipped with a wooden platform and covered gazebo, your own BBQ and propane. The sites are very large and many are extremely private. All sites are fully serviced. There are also 9 vacation homes to rent for the non-campers in your group.

All campsites at RidgeView Resort include a wooden deck and covered gazebo

We absolutely loved this resort where you'll find a huge outdoor swimming pool with loungers circling the pool. There are also private cabanas that can be reserved beside the pool, and families will enjoy the pool-side snack shack which makes lunch very easy to take care of without having to go back to your site.

Visit over a long weekend for live entertainment beside the pool, and you'll also be treated to a live band every Saturday night during the summer months for their weekly dance party.

Read all about the RidgeView Resort here:

Camp at RidgeView and this will be your swimming pool!

Camping in Fairmont Hot Springs

In this area we enjoy camping at the Fairmont Hot Springs RV Resort. Here you'll find full service sites for those with trailers and RVs. They do not allow tents. Those camping at the RV Resort receive access to the hot springs at a discounted rate from what the public pays.

If you are tenting, you can camp at the Spruce Grove Campground nearby (also managed by the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort.) This campground has a swimming pool and is located on the Columbia River. There's a great sandy beach area beside the river (early or later in the season when the water level is low) and you can still access the hot springs as a public user (without a discount.)

The Spruce Grove Campground also has several power + water sites along the river for those camping with trailers or RVs, and they have full hook up sites as well so there's something at this great campground for everybody! - it's honestly become one of our favourite campgrounds in the Columbia Valley.

Camping at the Spruce Grove Campground 

Camping in Kimberley

Further to the south in the small city of Kimberley we've recently found an amazing gem of a private campground, the Kimberley Riverside Campground. They have full hookup sites for trailers and RVs, they have glamping tents, and they also allow tenting on all sites. The sites are large, private, and have trees surrounding them for privacy from your neighbors. (Honestly, you won't find a better campground offering something for all styles of camping.)

Add a swimming pool and a mini golf course, and you've got an amazing place to spend a week! AND, it's always quiet here. (We've never struggled with loud partying, groups, or excessive noise.)

Camping at Kimberley Riverside Campground

Some of our Favourite Hikes in the Valley  

We certainly haven't done all of the hikes in the valley (something we'll be working on over the next many years) but we've definitely found a few family favourites.

Radium Hot Springs and area hikes

For hikes in Radium Hot Springs check out the story below where I've written about our favourite trails in detail.

Read: Active Family Guide to Radium Hot Springs, BC 

Hiking in Sinclair Canyon, Radium Hot Springs

Invermere area hikes 

1.  Mt. Swansea - This is one of the only mountains where you can drive most of the way to the summit! (high clearance vehicle recommended)  The upper parking lot takes you to within 500 metres distance of the summit with only 100 metres of height to climb.

For a longer hike, and if you don't have a high clearance vehicle, start from the bottom parking lot for a 6 km return hike (750 metres of height gain.)

There's also a great loop option (shown on the All Trails website) where you'll also reach the summit of the south ridge.

Read more about our last hike here with photos at Exploring the Columbia Valley Wetlands by Boat, Bike, and Hike.

Views from the top of Mount Swansea over the Columbia Valley

Mount Swansea Cave extension: If you're able to drive to the top parking lot at Mount Swansea, add on a side trip to visit an old copper mine cave. 

To find the cave, walk down the road from the parking lot a very short distance. If you arrive at the South Ridge Trail you've gone too far. The trail to the cave is unmarked but it heads off on the downhill side of the road into the trees. (Left side as you walk down from the summit.)

It's a short 5 minute hike. Turn right when you come to a trail junction and you're almost there. The cave is quite large with several corridors. Bring good headlamps.

The entrance to the old copper mine on Mt. Swansea

You'll see the old rail tracks in the cave

2.  Pedley Pass and Bumpy Meadow - This is another great hike that requires a high clearance vehicle.  It's a short walk to Bumpy Meadows (suitably named for the round bumps found throughout the meadow) and then it's a steep climb to Pedley Pass from where you can either hike along the ridge to your left or hike to a lovely tarn to your right.  All Trails has the hike marked as 7.6 km return but that assumes you are going to both the summit on the ridge along with the tarn. Taking in both objectives brings you up to 550 metres of height.

Pedley Pass Tarn 

Alternately, if you're a fan of ridge walks, check out the new Pedley Ridge Trail which makes a loop by going up a series of switchbacks, and across the ridge over a series of small bumps and two summits, before reaching the pass where you can detour to visit the tarn before hiking down.

The full ridge loop with a detour to the tarn is 10.5 km in total with 677 metres of height gain (according to All Trails.)

Hiking across the Pedley Ridge towards the first summit

3. Jumbo Pass - And this is yet another hike where you'll need a high clearance vehicle to reach the trailhead. You'll drive past Panorama Mountain Resort before getting onto rough logging roads. The hike is 8 km return with 700 metres of height gain. It's a steep trail with few views for the first hour (at least.) Bring lots of candy or motivational snacks for this part. Once you reach the alpine though, you'll be crossing beautiful meadows as you make your way to a hut that can be booked for backcountry stays. 

End your journey at the hut where there's a small tarn. Otherwise, for the best views, climb up the ridge behind the hut for another 100 metres of height gain. Go as far as you want. We stopped at the first summit (which extended our hike by an extra 2 km.)

Jumbo Pass (photo taken from the ridge above the hut)

4. Wilmer Wetlands - We discovered this hike while searching for two geocaches off Westside Road outside the small community of Wilmer. There is a small parking area along the side of the road and you'll see a large trailhead. Follow the path along the edge of an escarpment where you can look down on the Columbia River wetlands. 

Hike as far as you want and return the same way. There are alternate return options as well if you want to do a 4 - 5 km loop.

Note you'll want to watch small children carefully because a tumble off the cliffs would not end well.

The Wilmer Wetlands is a spectacular destination in the Columbia Valley

5. Ray Brydon Park - This off leash dog park is located in Invermere beside the Toby Creek Bridge. We discovered it looking for geocaches. It's a great area to take pets and children for a walk close to town (and there's a wide gravel path for kids who want to ride their bikes.)

Best of all, if you follow the wide gravel trail beside the creek, you'll come to a giant pile of rocks to climb on. The kids will be happy for hours here. (And there's a geocache hidden in the rocks.)

The rock pile at Ray Brydon Park will be a hit with all kids! 

6. Mount Bruce - This is another hike that requires a high clearance vehicle because you'll be driving a long ways up the Bruce Creek Forestry Service Road to get here from the Village of Wilmer. 

There's only 660 metres of height gain on this one but that's because you'll drive up another 700 metres of height from Wilmer! The hike is only 6.4 km round trip and we found it to be a very pleasant hike although others have said they found it to be steep.

The hike ends with a gorgeous ridge walk and there are larch trees in the fall.

Driving directions: Drive past Wilmer towards Lake Enid. Continue past the lake on the Bruce Creek FSR (forest service road), which then turns into the Ryan Creek FSR. It ends at the unmarked trailhead.

The link above will guide you from the trailhead to the summit.

You can also see Mount Bruce on Google Maps. Just type in Wilmer or Lake Enid for directions and you'll get a driving route. 

Mount Bruce is beautiful when the larch trees are golden in late September

7. Pinto Mountain - This is a new favourite spring hike in the valley for us and it also requires a high clearance vehicle to drive up the Pinto Mountain Access Road. You'll start by driving past the lower trailhead for the Mount Swansea Recreation Area and then turn left onto the Pinto Mountain Road.

You can follow the map at the link above on All Trails. 

The hike itself is 8.7 km round trip with 960 metres of height gain. It is quite steep in spots and then the final summit ascent is scrambly. There's also a narrow ridge walk at the very end. The views are amazing so choose a sunny day.

Looking over the Columbia Valley from the Pinto Mountain Trail

Fairmont Hot Springs and area hikes

1. Findlay Falls  - This cute little hike takes you to a lovely set of waterfalls and is only 2 km round trip with minimal elevation gain/loss.  It is located near the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort so plan a trip to the pool while you are in the area.

More photos can be seen in my story:  Want Spring?  Go West to the Columbia Valley.

Findlay Falls near Fairmont Hot Springs

2   The Hoodoos Trail - We love this early season hike to the top of a cliff lined with giant hoodoo rock formations.  It's an easy 2.9 km hike to the end of the trail and much of it is chariot-friendly as you'll start off on a double track road.

Hiking the Hoodoos Trail near Fairmont Hot Springs

3. Trails around the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort - There are many easy hiking trails that can be accessed from the resort if you're camping or staying here. Otherwise, park in the day use lot and hike to the trailhead for your chosen hike.

Our favourite hike is the Geary Lookout Trail for a short easy jaunt from the RV Campground. The trail is shown on a map that can be downloaded from the link above.

Geary Lookout Trail, Fairmont Hot Springs 

Kimberley and area hikes

For hikes around Kimberley, check out the story below where I've written about our favourite trails in detail.

Read: Family Adventure Bucket List for Kimberley, BC 

Wycliffe Buttes Trail near Kimberley, BC

Best Bike Rides in the Valley

This is the easiest section to write because I've already written a comprehensive guide to biking in the valley. AND, I update it every year with new trails or areas to ride.

Read the guide here: The Best Family Bike Trails in the Columbia Valley 

There are no shortage of amazing bike trails in the Columbia Valley

For more fun on bikes, check out the Radium Hot Springs Pump and Jump bike park in Sinclair Creek or the Mount Nelson Skatepark in Invermere with its own pump track. 

Biking on the Radium Hot Springs Pump and Jump in Sinclair Creek
Mount Nelson Skatepark in Invermere (great with bikes too)

Hot Springs in the Columbia Valley 

Below are where to find the natural and commercial hot pools across the valley:

Best Natural Hot Springs:

There are a couple natural hot spring pools located near the Fairmont Hot Springs commercial pools. To read more about the various soaking pools here, read my story below:

Read: Autumn Family Fun at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort. 

The Indigenous Baths, Fairmont Hot Springs Resort

We also like Lussier Hot Springs in Whiteswan Provincial Park.  Unfortunately, so does everybody else so don't expect to get them to yourself. There are several pools of varying temperatures from glacial cold to scalding hot.  Kids will love climbing on the rocks between the pools.  It is a short 2 minute hike down to the pools and there are two out house bathrooms for changing in.

Lussier Hot Springs are great when they aren't busy!

Soaking in the Lussier Natural Hot Springs

Best Commercial Hot Springs:

We love Fairmont Hot Springs. We come here year round but especially enjoy this pool in the summer because of the warm swimming pool This way, I get to soak in the hot pool while my boys swim and play in the other pool. Win win for all.

Regardless of the season, the swimming pool is always open though and so my boys can still swim around while I'm soaking.

Fairmont Hot Springs has a large swimming pool along with a hot soaking pool

And if you're in the Radium Hot Springs area, you have to check out the Radium Hot Springs Pools. Along with hot soaking pool, there's also more of a "real" swimming pool here with a diving board and a slide so the whole family will be happy.

Note for 2023, the cold swimming pool is closed for repairs. Opening date is TBD.

A quiet day at the Radium Hot Springs pools

Swimming pool at Radium Hot Springs 

Beaches and Water Fun 

Kinsmen Beach, Invermere:

My vote for best beach would go to Kinsmen Public Beach in Invermere where you'll find a splash park, playground, and jumping rafts with slides.  It's primarily a rocky beach but the town brings in a big pile of sand for the kids to play in.

The slides at Kinsmen Beach are a lot of fun!

Lake Lillian, Invermere:

For a great picnic spot, you'll find Lake Lillian outside of Invermere on the way up to Panorama Mountain Resort.  There are few picnic tables with fire pits and the lake is small enough for paddling without the noise of motor boats found on the larger Lake Windermere. There are also mountain bike trails across the road.

Swimming at Lake Lillian, Invermere

There is also a floating dock at Lake Lillian for jumping off in the summer months.

And, the lake is home to a healthy population of painted turtles! They're fun to search for while you paddle around the lake. (Look for logs along the shoreline.) - Just remember not to touch or disturb them.

Painted turtles at Lake Lillian 

Twin Lakes / Bottomless Lake:

If water adventure is more your "thing," consider visiting Twin Lakes or "Bottomless Lake" near Invermere. Park on the side of the road, hike a short 5 minutes in, Cliff jumping is very popular here.

Cliff jumping at Bottomless Lake

Bottomless Lake

Lazy Lake:

And further south of Fairmont Hot Springs, a visit to Lazy Lake will get your heart pumping! This incredible lake has cliff jumping, an amazing rope swing, and is a great place to paddle around with no loud motor boats. There is also a healthy painted turtle population.

Rope Swing at Lazy Lake

Note you'll need paddleboards, kayaks, or a canoe to move around the lake between the rope swing (opposite side of the lake from the day use area) and the cliff jumping (which is near the day use parking lot.)

And Lazy Lake is not a great picnic area if you aren't planning on paddling around. The beach area beside the day use parking lot is rocky and very small! Large groups gathering here block access to the water for all other users (and this includes setting up your picnic or sunbathing session on the fishing dock!)

Lazy Lake is a beautiful place to spend the day

There's also a small campground here (see the link above for more information) or you can camp at nearby Wasa Lake which takes reservations.

Cliff jumping at Lazy Lake 

Whiteswan Lake, Whiteswan Lake Provincial Park

South of Fairmont you'll find Whiteswan Lake Provincial Park with numerous FCFS campgrounds and day use areas. We like the Home Basin Campground and Day Use Area at the far end of Whiteswan Lake. There's a nice rocky beach area and the water is crystal clear for paddling/swimming.

Whiteswan Lake is a great day trip from Invermere or Fairmont

Note the road is a bit rough, but it's very doable with a normal car. This is also the same access for the Lussier Hot Springs, so plan to warm up there after visiting Whiteswan Lake.

To discover more great lakes south of Fairmont, read my guide to the best of Kimberley.

You won't find a better lake for SUP touring on a calm day than Whiteswan Lake!

Paddling opportunities and exploring the Columbia River 

We love paddling the Columbia River from Invermere to Radium Hot Springs. It's a gentle float and perfect for the whole family. And if you need to rent boats or arrange for a shuttle service, contact Columbia River Paddle in Invermere. They offer guided or self-guided tours of the Columbia River wetlands, shuttle services, and a variety of boat rentals.

Day tripping down the Columbia River from Invermere

For more information on day trips along the Columbia River, read this story below:

The Columbia River is great for novice paddlers

Want to try an overnight trip on the Columbia River?

Overnight paddling doesn't get more awesome than this!

Rafting on the Kootenay River

Kootenay River Runners operates several different rafting tours from their office in Radium Hot Springs. You can book a tour on Toby Creek (near Invermere,) The Kicking Horse River (near Golden,) or the Kootenay River (near Radium Hot Springs.)

My family tried a full day wilderness tour on the Kootenay River which included a second breakfast mid morning, a riverside lunch, and a visit to the incredible Pedley Falls. We had a fantastic experience on our family-friendly tour.

Read more below:

Rafting Tours on the Kootenay River are a great family-friendly summer activity

Dining and Eating out in the Valley 

Below are some of my recommendations: 

Best Ice-cream - Hopkins Harvest in Windermere (some of the best ice-cream I've ever had!!) 

Other recommended ice-cream shops:

Screamers - Radium Hot Springs

Chill Out - Invermere

Fairmont Pizza and Ice-Cream - Fairmont Hot Springs

Best family-friendly dining:

The Horsethief Pub and Eatery in Radium Hot Springs is great with kids! The place is family-friendly and the food is always good. Kids will enjoy the hamburgers with the "choose your burger style" option (including options for beef, chicken, or veggie, and several options for a side including classic french fries of course.)

We also love The Station Pub in Invermere. The food is good and it's located right beside Kinsman Beach.

And further to the south, the Bear's Paw Bar and Grill at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort has amazing pizza!

Finally, in the Kimberley area, it has to be the Pedal and Tap forever for mucked up fries.

Mucked up fries and a giant sandwich at the Pedal and Tap

Best Coffee shop in Radium Hot Springs - The Big Horn Cafe in Radium Hot Springs gets my vote here. We stop here endless times when we're in the valley because their baking is exceptionally delicious as is everything on the menu. And if you want a quick breakfast (or lunch,) their breakfast burritos are the absolute BEST.

Best Coffee shop in Invermere - We like the Blue Dog Cafe downtown Invermere. They have great sandwiches and coffee.

Best Coffee shop in the Fairmont Hot Springs Area - The Valley Coffee Company is located just off the highway beside the Pizza and Ice-Cream Parlour. It definitely has the best coffee in Fairmont.

Homemade donuts and awesome coffee at the Bighorn Café in Radium 

Family Fun in the Columbia Valley 

Below is a random assortment of fun activities you'll enjoy with your family.

Best Playgrounds- We like the Radium Hot Springs Main Park Playground (located two blocks west of Main St. on St. Joseph St.)

You'll also find great playgrounds in Invermere at both Kinsman Beach and James Chabot Beach.

The main playground in Radium is a fabulous park

Best Mini-golf - We love the mini-golf course at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort. It's affordable and you can enjoy two courses for one great price. There's an easy 9-hole course (which you'll see beside the road as you drive up to the resort) and an 18-hole course located down in the trees hidden from the road.

Mini golf at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort 

Zipline Tours in the Columbia Valley:

In the Radium Hot Springs area you'll want to try the Valley Zipline Adventures! We spent a couple of hours trying out the 7 ziplines at this park and had a blast! You can read the full review here:

Read: Valley Zipline Adventures Tour, Radium Hot Springs 

Ziplining in the Columbia Valley 

In the Fairmont Hot Springs area, I recommend trying the Mineral Mountain Zipline Tour at Fairmont Hot Springs. This was the "real deal" for ziplines with the longest crossing taking close to a minute to complete.

You can read more about our tour here:

Read: Autumn Family Fun at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort. 

Mineral Mountain Zipline Tour at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort 

Additional Resources

Visiting this winter?

Read: Winter Guide to the Columbia Valley (Golden, Radium Hot Springs, Invermere - and beyond!)

Disclaimer:  This story was not sponsored by any of the companies or businesses mentioned.  All opinions are entirely my own.