A day or two drive from my birthplace - feels a lot like home!

Back on the road again in June!  First stop: Osoyoos, BC

I left Portland OR, in late May heading to the Nk'Mip Resort in Osoyoos, British Columbia for the the annual Escape Trailers Owner Appreciation Rally.  As usual, this was a great event - lots of time to socialize with friends (old and new), see examples of all the new trailers and how each owner has customized their trailer (I always come away with a few new ideas!).  The park was crowded and I got set up just about a foot too far away from the power bush! And it was hot enough, even in my shady spot down by the lake that I wanted that hookup!  Luckily, a couple near me in an Escape 5th Wheel had a spare 30amp extension to loan me.

That's me at the end of the path down the hill

I was in Southern California in March during  the biggest wildflower bloom in 20 years - and was just in time for the wildflowers and cactus blooming in the micro-climate around Osoyoos, BC. in late May.

Next Stop: Chilliwack, BC for some upgrades

I have a portable solar panel that I wanted to be able to use to augment my built-in panel.  So, I had Escape add a Zamp solar port on the side of the rig.  Now, if I need a little extra juice on a cloudy day, I can just plug in the extra panel - easy-peazy!

Also, had some work done on the water pump.  I discovered last October that, while using a city water hookup (even with a water pressure regulator), that water could backflow into the fresh water tank and eventually overflow!  

Finally, I had been them install a weight distribution hitch.  I had been totally against adding a big clunky extra step to my trailering experience - but after being weighed at an Escapee's Smart Weigh, I realized that towing with my SUV was going to require a WDH for safety.  I don't enjoy the extra 'stuff' but the setup does tow better.

An exceptional opportunity!

I had originally planned on spending early June camping with a friend in Glacier National Park, Montana.  But, she proposed I join her for a couple of weeks camping near Merritt BC.  I could participate in a 2 day Traditional Medicines class, camp on Reserve Land, and basically immerse my self in native culture!  WOW - sign me up!!

 The 2 day medicines class consisted of foraging for dozens of plants in the morning - with Dr Jeanne Paul explaining identification, uses, times of the year to harvest and a wealth of other information.  In the afternoon, we would process the plants to make tinctures.  After about a month, there was another 2 day class to transform the tinctures into salves, sprays and other medicines.  Clearly, this stuff works - Dr. Jeanne is in her mid-80's and going-strong.  This was truly a unique experience and I'm so glad I got to participate.

Our instructor, Dr. Jeanne Paul

My friends, Suzanne and, her Mom, Amelia

Suzanne and Amelia, with the tinctures we made

Our Camping Spot

Suz and Amelia have been camping here since Suz was a little girl.  I can barely relate to having that kind of sense-of-place.

3 of the 5 little dogs we were camping with!

Little dogs - big Eagles!

Almost every day we watched these eagles camped out on the far side of the river.  I even saw one catch a good sized fish and carry it off!  We were very watchful of the little dogs - even placing their x-pen under a big pine tree so that the eagles wouldn't have a clear flight path to the dogs

In the evenings, campfires and crafts

Suz was better with the ax than I was - and we had some epic campfires!  Good thing too - the evenings were cool. 

 Amelia brought lots of great food:  home-canned moose stew, apples, cherries, raspberry and fireweed jelly, fresh kokonee and bannock!  We ate really well.  I'm afraid my biggest contribution was Southern grits (I couldn't believe that no one there had ever tasted grits!)

On one of our food gathering days (more about this in a minute), we gathered pine needles for pine needle baskets. Amelia taught me the basics of pine needle basketry - she teaches classes!

Traditional food gathering

We went out a couple times to gather traditional foods.  We gathered Suwette (wild celery) for seasoning, and several things for tea.  We were looking for Lightening Mushrooms - but it was too late in the season - no matter, a walk in the Mountains with Amelia is like a walk in a super-market.

Me and Amelia with a big bag of tea!

The lupines were in bloom all over the hills - who cares if we found mushrooms - it was a great walk!

Cloudy, but the rain held off and isn't it a beautiful view!

Bags of Tea and Wild Celery Seasoning to take with me

Next time I'll have to stay longer!  There's huckleberry gathering later in the fall . . . 

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