View Best Canoe Trip in a larger map I heard about the waterway that runs between Oyama Lake and Streak Lake on the Aberdeen plateau and how it is a great place just waiting for canoeists to discover nature and finally made the trip today with Suzanne and Sydney. The highlights were the stop at Oyama Lookout on the way up Oyama Lake road and a Blue Herring taking off from very close to the canoe just after we began the journey to Streak Lake from Oyama Lake. With the high water levels this year, there was not only no problem for a canoe to travel between the two lakes but a larger fishing boat also made the journey successfully. The GPS track below will bring you to the lookout and after that there are signs that take you to Oyama Lake. Once you can see Oyama Lake, do not enter the resort to launch (unless you are a guest) but you can use the rec site just to the north of the resort entrance (like 15 yards, eh)
The first pictures below are of the Oyama Lake Recreation site where it is free to camp (you pay for what you get here – not even toilet paper in the outhouse). Once you enter the recreation site you will see the multiple islands of Oyama lake with gentle waves nipping at each shoreline and fishermen jostling for the seemingly best spot while the air is filled with smells of smokies cooking on the grills of a few campers who are taking advantage of the free campsite despite the teams of gawking fishermen launching their boats of all types and sizes in the one stall launch area.
Following the directions to Beaver Lake Resort couldn’t get much simpler; Take Beaver Lake Road heading east from Winfield for about 17 km and park at the resort after you see the sign for
Beaver Lake Mountain Resort
Beaver Lake Resort. But wait it does get simpler, just in case you were mis-directed by some large bovine, 8 km up you are told to “hang in there, only eight km to go” by a nice sign on a pinetree. Further on, another pine tree sign states “It only feels like forever the first time” and “There is only 3km to go!” Other strategically placed markers note what you will find at the back country resort when you arrive.
When we decided to plan a July first camping trip last winter, we found that the cabins at Beaver Lake Resort were almost fully booked. After we emailed them from their Beaver Lake Mountain Resort website and told them what we needed, they emailed back a quick reply and we were set up with a booking for Elk Cabin #12.
Elk cabin is one of the few without its own dock but it is right above the nicest beach on the lake.
Beaver Lake Beach
The campers from the private camp ground and other guests made the beach a busy place. There was a large group on July 1st enjoying the beach when the fireworks went off. I was quite surprise at the half hour (or longer) amazing fireworks show. I figured ther might be a few fireworks but this show was incredible. What a perfect choice for the long weekend!
Have you ever set up a little holiday to find that you have to overlook little annoyances that could take away from the fun? Not at Elk Cabin. The reason I’m writing this post is because I was simply delighted by the quality of craftmanship put into the cabin, along with the other “little things” that made our stay special. Being that my goal was to note a few hiking trails and other camping areas from around the area during my stay, I thought that the guest book made of wood was interesting and the fact that it had the Beaver Lake Viewpoint hiking trail and Wrinkly Face Provincial Park noted on a topographic map along with the Beaver Lake fishing map was just perfect!
The perfect Guestbook holder.
Here is the gps track and map of the View Point Trail. This track shows the route as well to Echo Lake – however, the logging has wrecked the trail to the lake ….i think….I actually ran out of time and could not take the time to find the trail to the lake. Maybe someone can send me a gps track to post here! The Viewpoint Trail on the map below is the spur that leaves the loop near the beginning of this track and heads up to the high point. Very Nice View!
the path to the viewpoint - I had to stop my two wheel drive and hike the last hundred meters
Viewpoint Trail - all these pictures were taken on my Blackberry Curve - this was the best one of the trip!
You could see Beaver Lake on one side and Okanagan Lake on the other!
Below are a few pictures of a few of the Elk cabin features as well as other pictures from around the lakeshore that I took on my canoe ride.
There are many other resort features such as the specialty coffees that one can purchase, petting zoo, wellness center, kids playground, awesome boatdock, boat rentals and much more. Too much to cover here.
Along with the Free Camping at Wilma Lake, I enjoy trying new hiking and camping / survival skills. Normally I encourage the kids to build their own shelters and help them out as they progress. For the Wilma Lake hike and overnight camp I planned to build one shelter for us all, some people call it a tipi. I thought that if we secured one end of a long tarp near the top of the teepee tripod, we would find a way to spiral out the rest of the tarp to circle the tripod and enclose the shelter. Then use some smaller tarps to close up the bottom of the teepee.
Well that didn’t work out but in trying to achieve the impossible my two sons and I experienced a great teambuilding project where we had to realize our goal could not be completed and come up with a alternate shelter. – not without a few frustrations though. 🙂
While we completed the outer shell, the other boys gathered firewood and bows for our bedding.
So the tipi turned into a lean to and if there was a chance it was going to storm, I would have suggested a shelter that would have been more enclosed.
After the shelter was built we had some time for teaching some fire lighting and my Caleb tried his hand at making a wooden spear. (It stuck into pretty much anything the first few throws!
Fire building lesson
fire lessons again
The fire in front of the shelter was a nice touch, along with some large blocks of wood that kept it burning long into the night and heating the inside of the shelter with its radiant heat.
Early morning blaze
Our plans of hiking (bushwacking) around Wilma lake to find the top of the East hill and view the neighbouring Doreen Lake were cancelled when my water pump broke. The shaft inside the pump seperated and made it impossible to use. We packed in enough water to last the first day but would require filtered water to hike the second day. Instead we left early for home after cleaning up our camp and packing out the empty burnt tins and such.
On Saturday May 16 2009 3 or 4 teenagers and 3 preteens and I (Clayton) will head out to Wilma Lake on the Aberdeen Plateau.
We will have a short hike and then enjoy learning and using survival skills to build a fire, shelter and if time permits, a raft!
View Hiking Trails and Camping at Wilma Lake – BC, Canada in a larger map On Sunday morning, after a fun night of campfire stories, we will break camp, remove any trace of our being there, and head out for a hike to check out Doreen Lake then take a scenic bushwacking hike back to our vehicles.
Have room for one more adult or teen in the second vehicle. Leave a comment or send an email if your interested in coming along and practicing some survival skills.
Have you explored the Aberdeen Plateau? Don’t wait any longer, this area is an outdoor playground of all types. The most common ways of entering the Aberdeen Plateau from Kelowna are;
Beaver Lake Rd. at Winfield
Oyama Lake Rd at Oyama
Highway 33 near Kelowna and Highway 6 near Lumby
High Rim Trail Head Sign near the Wrinkly Face Provincial Park border and Aberdeen Road crossing.
Along with the well known Dee Lakes and Beaver Lake Backcountry and Fishing Resorts, the Aberdeen Plateau encases part of the High Rim Trail and other hiking trails, appealing bushwacking destinations, free campsites – BC Forest Service Recreation sites, mountian biking areas, fishing lakes (many with a close proximity to each other) hunting areas with many types of game, 4X4 and other motorised vehicle recreation areas, peace and quiet! The route that I drove was from Beaver Lake Rd. in Winfield, past Beaver Lake Resort and along Aberdeen Road all the way to Lumby on Highway 6. The road is excellent for two or four wheel drive trucks. If you are very cautious, you could even take a car over the route.
If you drive the route – you must be aware of Logging Trucks and stay to your side of the road!
If you want to use one of the best free campsites around at Doreen Lake, you better have a back up plan as this site is very popular! Here is a map of the area that show the free campsites. If you really like to rough it, the area is great for some crown land camping. I would suggest to do some Google Earth mapwork, find an abondoned logging road, park on the side of the road and backpack in to your secret outdoor spot that you have input into your GPS! PS – Be Bear Safe!