Equine Skijoring

Skijoring

Skijoring, what in the world is skijoring? Its is a winter sport where a person on skis is towed behind a horse, dog(s), or motor vehicle. While many countries have sports involving being pulled on skis, the name is derived from the Norwegian skikjoring. (ski driving)

Equine Skijoring

The popularity of this sport has ebbed and flowed over the years. Skijoring rose to the level of demonstration sport in the 1928 winter Olympics. The sport has been seeing a resurgence of popularity in North America over the past decades. People;e are reconnecting with the skill and excitement of skiing behind a galloping horse.

 

Equestrian skijoring consists of a team of a single horse, generally guided by a rider, pulling a person on skis who carries no poles and simply hangs onto a tow rope. The North American Ski Joring Association holds competitions in which a rider guides the horse with skier navigating a series of jumps and obstacles. More informal competitions are held on flat ground over short courses, often as simple sprint races on a straightaway, sometimes with turns on the course.

 

The sport requires sound horsemanship, skilled skiing, a sense of adventure and a quick mind to adapt to the challenges of a high speed winter sport.

Wells Gray Skijoring

On Feb 24, 2018, the Wells Gray Riders Association is providing a demonstration of this exciting nordic equine sport. Where? Right here in beautiful Clearwater BC.  This promises to be great winter fun for the whole family. Come on out and cheer the spectators on. Be prepared for high speed thrills, spills and chills.

Wells Gray Skijoring event poster. Feb 2018. Clearwater BC. A family event. Stay at Valley Hideaway Guest House.

Wells Grays Riders Present – Skijoring

 

 

For more information, or to register a team 

 

Winter, spring, summer, and fall …. it takes all year to do it all in Clearwater.

We are offering a special rate for this event, contact us to book.

Turcotte Compound Drag Races

Turcotte Compound Drag Races and Charity Event

Fans of snowmobiling and extreme sports will want to check out the Turcotte Compound Drag Races Charity Event in Clearwater, BC on March 3, 2018.

The Turcotte Compound is hosting Snowmobile Drag Races and a Snowmobile Freestyle show Charity Event In Beautiful Clearwater B.C! The Event will take place in The Field beside the Raft River Elementary School, both the school and Clearwater Redi-Mix have donated weekend use for the event!! 

 

The Turcotte Compound Drag Races & Freestyle Charity Event - Clearwater BC, March 3, 2018

Charity Event and Freestyle Show, March 3, 2018

 

All proceeds raised from the event will go to The B.C Snowmobile Federation and The British Columbia Lions Club Society Easter Seals fundraiser for Children with disabilities! 

This event will be presented by X-Games Silver Medalist Brett Turcotte along with the help of The Clearwater Sno-Drifters! 

Pre Registration will open January 1, 2018 

Contact Niki@Turcottecompound.com to get registration forms and information.

 

UPDATE : Turcotte wins two gold medals in Aspen in 2018 https://www.clearwatertimes.com/sports/update-turcotte-wins-second-gold-at-x-games/

 

In support of this Event Valley Hideaway Guest House is offering discounted rates March 1-4, 2018 inclusive. Book your stay with us.

The Birchleg

The Birchleg is coming February 3, 2018

What is the Birchleg?

The Birchleg is a family fun cross country ski event. It begins with a mass start at 10:00 AM at the Candle Creek Cross Country Ski Trails. You can expect expert skiers, families and novices out for a good time. Ski all 28 km of trails or ski just a bit, its up to you.

Its your chance to dress up like a viking or ancient Norwegian. There are prizes for the best costume. It’s followed by a hot Norwegian Style lunch (or vegetarian lunch). Its a fun filled community event.

Whats it all about?

According to the Wells Gray Outdoors Club (Clearwater, BC, Canada):

Rescue of-Haakon-Haakonsson-painted-by-Knud-Bergslien

Rescue of Haakon Haakonsson. Painted by Knud Bergslien

 “The Birchleg is a fun ski event in early February re-enacting a cross country ski trip made by two Viking warriors in the 13th Century. King Haakon of Norway was murdered in 1204 during a time of civil war. The King’s infant son was in immediate peril of the same fate. Two Viking warriors loyal to their dead king and his heir took the baby to safety in Trondheim. Their flight was in midwinter, skiing 55 kilometres across the mountains. Holding the child secure behind a shield, these warriors were armed with a battle-axe and spears. Young Haakon Haakonson grew to adulthood in safety, returning to Norway to claim his father’s throne.”

There was even a movie made recently about the rescue of King Haakon based on the mythic historical story. The Last King is worth watching, whether you plan to ski the Birchleg or not.

A scene from the rescue as depicted in “The Last King” – Image Courtesy Norwegian Film Institute

Follow this link for waiver and entry form.

Busy BirchLeg day? No problem, there’ re still lots of opportunities to cross country (nordic) ski here through the rest of the winter.  More than 25 km of groomed trails at Candle Creek await you at. There are still more groomed trails at North Thompson Provincial Park and there are miles upon miles of unbroken trails through the wilderness.

If you are looking for a place to stay while here, book your stay at Valley Hideaway Guest House, we are open year round.

 

Open Year Round – Valley Hideaway Guest House

Open year round at Valley Hideaway Guest House, Clearwater BC.

Open Year Round? Why?

Some guests are amazed to find out that we are open year round at Valley Hideaway. Why do you stay open? What is there to do in Clearwater in the off season?

It is true that the peak tourist season here is the May long weekend through the Thanksgiving weekend. It is also true that some of the tourist attractions close for the off season but there are still plenty of reasons to come by for a visit.

Clearwater is the perfect stopover point for those travelling from Northern Alberta or British Columbia to the lower mainland. Edmonton to Vancouver? Stop over in Clearwater. It’s a natural break in the driving and will leave you refreshed for the balance of your journey.

Autumn

The fall season is a beautiful time to enjoy the fall scenery and the waterfalls Wells Gray Park is famous for. There are less people around and the water falls remain accessible during the autumn allowing you more space to enjoy our pristine wilderness.

Deer, moose and other wildlife are in their mating season or “rut” during the fall. That means they will be on the move and you have a good chance of seeing them.

There are more than 50 fishable lakes within an hours drive and the river fishing can be great. 

Winter

If winter is your season enjoy the sight of spectacular ice formations on Helmcken Falls. Traverse miles of cross country and snowshoe trails. Enjoy great snowmobile trails within an hours drive. Try a Canadian winter treat and ice fish for rainbow trout and Kokanee salmon right in town on Dutch Lake.

 

Helmcken Falls, Wells Grey Park, Clearwater BC,

We have a volunteer run local downhill ski slope. It’s not as fancy as some, but it is a great way to spend the day on some easy slopes.

Relax and enjoy the outdoor fire pit at Valley Hideaway or sit in the living room and cuddle up by the indoor fireplace with a good book.

Check out some of the local events and get to know some of our residents. Try the Blackpool Hall Coffee House once a month and hear great local musicians. Enjoy one of the Royal Canadian Legion’s Saturday Suppers. Watch a local amateur ice hockey team, it’s not the National Hockey League but it is a Canadian tradition.

The pace of life slows down here in the off season, come and relax with us.

Winter, summer, spring and fall. It takes all year to do it all in Clearwater.

Book your stay at Valley Hideaway Guest House now.

Review

SEASON IN REVIEW

Now that it is officially autumn in Canada, it is time to review and evaluate our first season at Valley Hideaway Guest House (a B&B in Clearwater, BC).

We launched later than we had hoped. Renovations took longer than planned and we did not open until early July rather than the anticipated May long weekend. That was just in time for the busiest forest fire season on record in British Columbia. Our community spent time on evacuation alert (meaning we could be called to flee at a moment’s notice) and many communities through the province were evacuated.

Wells Gray Park was closed in its entirety for part of the summer due to wildfire risk. When it did finally open, all the back country was closed. Those closures, combined with the fire danger and smoke from seemingly endless fires some hundreds of miles away, slowed down tourism … a lot.

With the September rains fire bans have now been lifted and the park is once again reopened. It remains open in the winter for those tourists who want to see another side of the beauty of this area.

We had some battles with technology and a list of administrative duties to attend to. There were booking agents (OTA’s, online travel agencies) to be worked with, channel managers to be set up (those are the companies that coordinate the calendars for the various OTA’s and our website.  Merchant accounts (to accept credit card payments), bank accounts to open and insurance to obtain.

The drought and the deer played havoc with the garden but we were able to provide some garden fresh fruit and vegetables to our guest. Next year we hope to do more. The work on the grounds continues but we are making progress. There will be some minor fine tuning projects indoors over the winter, but nothing that should hinder our guests.

The menu was fine tuned repeatedly. Follow up emails, and various record keeping systems were developed and revised. All in all it was busy.

HOW DID WE DO?

So in the end what did it look like? More than 80% of our available dates were booked (I haven’t calculated the exact number yet but I suspect it will top 90%). Visitors came from at least 14 different nations. We met wonderful people and enjoyed hosting them and blessing them.

Misty Mountain Dog made many new friends and now considers entertaining the guests to be part of her job description. An informal review from her rated her as delightful.

At booking.com we stand rated at an exceptional 9.8 out of possible 10 by our guests. At Expedia our reviews show us at 5 out of 5. Facebook reviewers give us 5 stars and several ratings at Google maps give us 5 stars as well. There is room for improvement, but I think we can call that a good start.

5 star wreath - great review

It was a tiring season, but worth ever moment of it. We will remain open through the fall, winter and spring and are delighted to be seeing the bookings already coming in for summer 2018.

There is plenty to do all year round in Clearwater, so don’t let our summer wrap up fool you. We are here all year, ready willing and able to host your stay. Come Rest, relax, restore and explore.

Book with us

Harvest Faire

Clearwater 2nd Annual Harvest Faire

Check out the Harvest Faire if you want something to do this weekend.

The second annual Harvest Faire will be celebrating Canada’s 150th Anniversary with good ol’ time fun activities and delicious contests for the whole family! There will be fresh bannock made on site, and the Great Zucchini Cook Off Competition. Check out hands-on wheat threshing demonstrations. Listen to live music.  Kids can enjoy zucchini races and other fun activities.

YCS Food Security will be handing out our 150 berry plants! A great big thanks to the North Thompson Communities Foundation and the Community Foundation of Canada for their support in making this event possible!

Harvest Faire Poster 2017

 

Where? At the Clearwater Farmer’s Market, Old North Thompson Highway, Clearwater BC.

When? Saturday, September 23, 2017. 9:00- 12:00.

 

Be sure to check out the rest of the Clearwater Farmer’s Market while you are there as well, and the crafts and other goodies for sale in the Elks Hall.

Looking for a play to stay in Clearwater? Book with Valley Hideaway Guest House. The B&B of choice and open year round. Ideal for couples and family of up to seven.

 

Rest, Restore, Relax, Explore

Wells Gray Park Open

WELLS GRAY PARK OPEN

Update From Wells Grey Tourism … Wells Gray Park Open ….

“OPEN!!!
Wells Gray Park is fully open tomorrow morning (September 12, 2017) at 8:00 AM. This includes Moul Falls, the flower meadows, and the West Lake Loop. See you on the trails! Hooray!”

Wells Gray Park Open

 

The back country of Wells Grey Park, in Clearwater BC has been closed for much of the summer due to fire hazard. Access to some of the Falls (Spahats Falls, Dawson Falls, the Mushbowl, and Helmcken Falls) has been available but most of the walk in falls were inaccessible. The entire park is open.

That all changes tomorrow.

Time for a hike? Come to Clearwater. Hike the Trophies. Explore to your heart’s content.

Want to stand under a waterfall? Come to Clearwater and hike into Moul Falls. It’s an experience you will never forget.

Come check out the salmon at Bailey’s Chute. They are still running.

Come and see the sights that people from all over the world journey here for. Come be amazed at the wonder of it all.

Clearwater BC and Wells Grey Park are worth seeing for the first time or once again.

You might not realize that much of the park is open year round. I think that some of the falls (particularly Helmcken Falls) have a special majestic beauty in the winter season. See ice cones at the bottom of the falls several hundred feet tall. 

Come cross country ski or snowshoe. Try your hand at ice fishing.

BOOK YOUR STAY WITH AT VALLEY HIDEAWAY GUEST HOUSE. Like the Park, we are open year round as well.

Clearwater is for more than summer. 

Clearwater Canoe Regatta

CLEARWATER CANOE REGATTA – Saturday September 9, 2017

If you are looking for some family fun this weekend, check out the annual Clearwater Canoe Regatta.

A full day of fun races and all FREE events at Dutch Lake in Clearwater, BC. Bring your community spirit!

Participants launching canoes at the Clearwater Regatta

 

Clearwater Canoe Regatta events line-up:

Morning

-8AM Run for Fun! Run or walk a 5km route.
-9AM Rotary Relay Race. Individual or team up to 4 5km run, 10km bike and Canoe around the island
-10AM Kids Triathalon for ages 6-10.
-11AM Opening Ceremony-11:30 AM Family Canoe Race
-11:30AM CANFOR Community BBQ! Free:)

Afternoon

-12:30-3:30PM Activities and Games on the Beach
-1PM The Main Event! Challenge First Responders in obstacles and canoe races, support those who do so much!
-1:30PM Whatever floats your boat! Create a raft from materials and race it to the finish line.
-2PM Paddle Board/Kayak Race, Bring your own to race.
-3PM Dinghy Dash Surprise, Teams of two race to win
-3:30PM Scavenger Hunt, teams of four race to win.

 

Thanks to the generous sponsors, all events and the community BBQ are free.

Arts, crafts and face painting. Be a participant and or come and be a spectator.

 

A TOURISM WELLS GRAY EVENT

 

Need a place to stay in Clearwater? Book now at Valley Hideaway Guest House.

Canyon Falls

In the second instalment of our series “the waterfalls of Wells Grey”, we examine the trio of Canyon Falls. Rather unimaginatively named, the canyons are named as they appear on the park road. First, second and third canyon all have waterfalls. You will likely drive past these falls without ever knowing they exist. Only one of the three is visible from the road.

First Canyon Falls

According to the world waterfall database “The first of the three Canyon Creeks along the Wells Gray – Clearwater corridor holds a small waterfall at its head, but because of the angle of the gorge and the crumbly substrate, viewing the falls is exceptionally dangerous and not recommended. The falls can be heard from the road, and partially glimpsed from the left side of the bridge, but getting close would warrant being in a harness. First Canyon Creek flashed in 1997, wiping out the bridge spanning the stream and in the process, deepened the canyon considerably. There is supposedly a second fall downstream a short distance that can be accessed from the First Canyon Creek access to the Clearwater River Trail. First Canyon is crossed 13 ½ km up the Clearwater Valley Road from the Yellowhead Highway in Clearwater.”

Second Canyon Falls

Another set of falls not visible by road. The upper falls were destroyed some time ago in a flash flood. This canyon has proved troublesome by damaging or destroying four bridges and causing many problems with the culvert system  with serious flash floods and erosions. Apparently another falls is still to be found somewhat downstream although we have not visited it. It is possible to hike up from the Clearwater River but be cautious as the trail is not great and flash floods are dangerous.

Third Canyon Falls

At least part of these falls are visible if you park and walk out onto the bridge. The canyon snakes around quite a bit so it is not possible to see the full falls clearly. Trying to walk out and get to see the falls better could prove dangerous.

While not spectacular like some others, Third Canyon falls are pretty enough to warrant a stop and see. Be certain to stop before or after the bridge and park safely.

There is another falls downstream but it is not visible from the bridge.

Third Canyon Falls, Wells Grey Park, Clearwater BC

Third Canyon Falls

 

Be sure to book your guest suite at Valley Hideaway Guest House B&B. We are open year round.

Waterfalls of Wells Grey Park – Triple Decker

 WATERFALLS OF WELLS GREY – TRIPLE DECKER FALLS

We start with Triple Decker Falls to kickoff the Wells Grey Waterfall tour because its the first one up the Park Road. Triple Decker is also known as known as Candle Creek (because it is located on Candle Creek).

Triple Decker Falls, Wells Grey Park, Clearwater BC

Triple Decker (Candle Creek) Falls – Image courtesy www.kamloopstrails.net. Used by permission

If you have driven into the park you likely passed the hidden gem and never knew it was there. Candle Creek flows under the road in a culvert and the falls are a short hike downstream. Watch for some steep sections and a few cliff edges along the trail. Use common sense and a little caution  when hiking, but the trail is not unduly dangerous.

As the name implies Triple Decker cascades down three steps (technically a tiered plunge) with a drop of nearly 200 feet. The tallest of the three tiers is about 30m (100feet). 

Triple Decker is a pretty set of falls year round but at it’s most impressive with the early spring waterfall. Be prepared to get wet in the spring as the falls produces a lot of mist in peak runoff.

Facing westward and heavily shaded with old growth forest, the falls are best viewed from the bottom during the morning.

 

 

Book your suite at Valley Hideaway Guest House. Make us your B&B choice as base to explore the unspoiled wilderness and waterfalls of Wells Grey  Park. Retreat – Rest- Restore – Explore