As an outdoor enthusiast from a big city, moving to Revelstoke has been a game changer in the variety of outdoor adventures and activities. With lakes, mountains, rivers and endless trails right outside your doorstep, the possibilities for summer fun are not only endless but let’s face it, can be a little daunting at times too deciding what adventures are best to do in town. This guide will shed some light on some of my favourite activities to do right here in Revy and its surrounding areas, and with summer kicking off in full swing there’s no better time to get outside and play!
1. White Water Rafting
I’m a water baby. I’ve always loved to be in the water swimming, taking in a float or paddling; whatever I could get my hands on. So when the opportunity came up to go White Water Rafting, I was all over it. It was a chance to challenge myself to do something new and also to see the Illecillewaet River from a brand new perspective.
From the moment I got to the meeting centre right up until we were pushing the raft into the rapids, I felt a whole series of emotions ranging from excitement, trepidation, all-out fear and finally, calm acceptance. I had no idea what to expect, but as the guides went through safety and technique I felt myself ease into the experience knowing I was in super capable hands. There was no shortage of dad jokes which added to the charm and breezy vibe of the entire tour. Once the guides went through instructions and commands, we were in the water taking on waves and rushing rapids. I was thrilled to see how engaged we were with the tour, all working together in synchronicity with people I had met just a few hours ago. The guides were always there to give us instruction and when there was calmer water, took the time to educate us on the surrounding area, the geography, and some history; once the adrenaline subsided, this was high on the list of my favourite moments of the trip. The higher faster rapids got my heart racing and every so often a yelp of excitement would escape my lips. It was a delightful surprise to discover that even the bigger rapids that I compared to that epic scene in The Perfect Storm where the boat takes on an enormous wave and tips never made me feel unsafe. The guides were always in control, and that was a huge plus for me.
Once we got back on dry land, we were treated to some yummy snacks and the opportunity to heat up in a hot tub which couldn’t have capped off the day more perfectly. What’s more is once we had dried off we were treated to a slideshow with all the photos from the tour! All ready to go and totally free! I would highly recommend this tour for anyone who’s into trying something new or just likes to get out on the water for some good old-fashioned high energy fun!
Check Out White Water Rafting
2. Kayaking Tour
I have been kayaking before, in different parts of Ontario and even overseas in New Zealand, but this experience was a stand-alone top notch activity. I pulled up to the boat launch by the dam to take the Kayak Short Tour and was greeted by a group of friendly smiles including my guide, a local resident who has been doing kayak tours on these waters for several years now. After brief intros and some much-appreciated paddling lessons, we headed out onto Lake Revelstoke with the company’s handmade wooden kayaks to explore the surrounding area and visit some very unique parts of the Lake above the Dam.
The first thing I noticed while paddling out is how calm and peaceful the water was, how quickly this serenity washed over me as I took in views of Begbie and Macpherson and how the views from the water made me all kinds of happy and giddy. As we leisurely paddled along, the guide took time to speak to the group about fun facts about the surrounding area and even gave me some individual attention since he noticed my paddling skills could use work (apparently the kayak isn’t supposed to always have a dominant left turn!). His experience really shone through because within a few minutes my stokes were more even and the whole experience felt more fluid!
Shortly after finding my groove, we approached another magnificent scene; a powerful, rushing waterfall in all its mighty glory crashing down into the water right before us. It was humbling to witness, getting so close to it you could feel the mist of water on your face as you approached. You’d need to put some work in if you wanted a closer experience; this powerful force would push you away and out of the cove if you weren’t careful! We snapped a few pics and carried on with our adventure on to the next treat, a hidden inlet!
The inlet can be heard before it can be seen. Completely invisible from the centre of the lake, when you approach this wonder, you can immediately feel the temperature drop all around you from the glacier-fed waterfall that doubles as a natural waterslide. The inlet is rife with historical and geographical facts that you take in as you step off your kayak to enjoy a closer look at this natural phenomena. As you continue along the shoreline, a number of beaches can be seen and approached with your kayak if time permits.
When the time comes for your return to dry land, another great adventure under your belt; you are rewarded with a homemade granola treat that could easily win awards if the Oscars existed for baking. A number of people have returned to the company simply to ask for the recipe for this delicious treat and I too was not disappointed. While finishing up my second bar I was given a card which directed me to where I could find the photos from my day, free to all guests as if the tour didn’t already have amazing value. I couldn’t wait to go home and relive the experience from the other side of the lens. This trip was a topper for me because of the unforgettable views, the individual attention on form and technique, then the subtle ways this tour reminded you that its a collection of small moments that create unforgettable experiences that you can appreciate for years!
Check Out Kayaking
3. ATV Tour
ATVing was a completely new experience for me. For someone who prefers to take in the scenery than to go at top speeds, I was curious to see how I would feel about a tour zipping through a mountain in a metal cage. Suffice to say, I was not disappointed. We arrived at the meeting spot, a beautiful lodge called Glacier House. We were greeted warmly by our incredible tour guide and went to get fitted for our helmets. On the way, we got to see his fleet of Dirt Bikes, Side by Sides, ATVs and other motor toys. I could feel my heartbeat rising already just talking about what these machines could do. We suited up and took the ATV down the dirt road passed Frisby Ridge Mountain and down another smaller dirt road. We whipped around corners and arrived at a secluded beach on Lake Revelstoke. I was in awe of the beauty before me. You could bring the ATV right to the bottom of Guatemala Beach. Benches and fire pits could be found in the surrounding area and driftwood fashioned into interesting and unique pieces of art has been left like souvenirs and keepsakes for all the future discoverers of this place to observe, only through the ATV tour was I able to realize this magical place even existed.
We darted back up the dirt roads and headed to Boulder Mountain, a mountain famous for winter sledding and summer mountain biking. But to my surprise, the mountain also bolsters amazing ATV trails, perfect for any weather summer can throw your way! We powered through glacier-fed streams, rivers and waterfalls with ease, getting splashed along the way. Every big stream would have me in stitches, laughing at how fun and carefree this activity made me feel. It was both a total rush and completely serene, especially when looking out the windowless vehicle to absorb your surroundings. You were met with the most scenic beautiful views from up high on the mountains. There was a spectacular view of the Columbia River and Revelstoke. You could see everything from up there and it is quite the site to see! Blue waters, snow-capped mountains and wildflowers that remind you how beautiful this place really is. The combination of adrenaline from riding the ATV and then the peace and serenity I felt when I got out of the vehicle and looked around was a welcomed and unmatched contradiction of feelings and sensations. This tour is highly recommended for those who would love a taste for both!
Whether you like to take in the majestic views around you or like to step it up a notch and test the limits to get your heart pumping, there’s something for everyone here in Revelstoke, B.C. There is no shortage of fun ways to spend a day in the sun and on the water! Try something new and give yourself a memory that will last a lifetime.
Check Out ATVing