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On our descent towards Abbotsford Airport near Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Crescent Beach (Vancouver), British Columbia, Canada.

Where are they going next? Bellingham, Washington.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Into the United States for a few days

Wow... we loved this area between Greenwood and Osoyoos, British Columbia. Just gorgeous scenery.

We stayed in the supposedly $10 a night municipal campground in Greenwood. The sign said that someone would be by to collect the fee... but nobody ever showed up. So we left. Don't feel too guilty about it though... we donated $10 to their library for some used books. And really, if you're not going to come and collect the money, then we don't have a lot of sympathy for your loss! It was just dry camping anyhow... no hookups, so we didn't cost them anything by staying there.

We headed west on highway 3 towards Osoyoos...

Scenery along the way.

More scenery.

We stopped at the town of Midway. Another nice little spot along our route! We found a place to park, and got the bikes off the back. The plan was to ride back up to Boundary Falls on the Kettle Valley Rail Trail, a distance of about 20 kms (12 miles) return. But we got about 2 kms and it was very hard going because the trail was too sandy. So we turned around and went back to town and just did some riding around there. Found a gravel road that was on the other side of the river, and then a nice trail that followed the river for a while.

Beautiful countryside around Midway, British Columbia.

The Kettle River, taken from the bridge in Midway.

And, looking the opposite way.



This was a fun trail!

Ruth and her bike.

Great scenery.

We ended up doing 13 kms (8 miles) which took us about an hour.

And then we carried on west. We didn't stop again until we got to the border station south of Osoyoos, so here are some pictures of the drive...




Interesting sky!


View of Osoyoos coming down the mountain.

We stayed for a week in Osoyoos back in November of 2007 our first few months traveling in the motorhome. We actually stayed (and paid) for a week in an RV park! How we have changed! But, we also didn't have Sherman set up for being off grid the way we do now.

The town has definitely grown! 

Really? Your own observatory...?

Coming down the hill to Osoyoos.

That's our road down there!

Easy border crossing. The guard took our passports, asked about booze and tobacco, asked what food we had with us (Ruth had a list) and then pulled us over for a secondary agricultural inspection. Then another guard brought our passports back, came in and looked inside our fridge, and sent us on our way.

No problem.

Welcome to Washington State!

First thing we saw after crossing the border was gasoline at $3.29 USD a gallon ($1.15 CAD per liter). We are close to empty (having planned it that way!) and we will fill Sherman to the brim when we leave here later this week.

We drove the short distance to the town of Oroville and stopped at a grocery store and bought a few things, including two five liter boxes of wine, and a box of 18 beer. Total, including the 30% exchange rate difference was almost half what it would have cost in Canada. Even if we are over the limit and they make us pay duty on the way back to Canada, we will still be ahead of the game.

Then, I spotted a NAPA auto parts store. I walked over and asked about the idle speed control valve that Sherman needs. This is the part that was diagnosed when we were up in Smithers last month. At the time, they wanted $74 CAD for this part, and it was going to take 4-5 weeks to get us one. I searched myself for one, and also couldn't come up with it.

At the NAPA store here in Oroville? $28 USD ($37 CAD), and it will be here today!

Then, we stopped by the mechanic who is going to change Sherman's lower control arms. Only one problem... both control arms haven't arrived yet! Only one was there, even though the shipping confirmation showed they had both been delivered. So I'm in the process of trying to track down what has happened to the other box!

No worries, we have lots of time and can wait here a week if we have to. Besides, lots to do in the area and we've already found some great hiking trails. And, we're waiting for a special visitor who is driving up to say hello to us!

We found a great overnight spot!

Yesterday's drive, 94 kms (58 miles).

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Nice price drop on this Masterbuilt Digital Electric Smoker... huge discount.

And in Canada...

It's not often you can find a great deal on Amazon Canada, but this one is!




25 comments:

  1. It's been commented that the scenery looks like Idaho. The terrain also looks like northern New Mexico, but we don't have the lakes.

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    1. We haven't spent much time in Idaho ourselves so we can only accept the fact that the people who are commenting have spent time there but it would make sense seeing that we really aren't all that far away from Idaho right now. I also agree with you Creigh that it is similar to northern New Mexico and even bits of northern Arizona and that would make sense as well because they have desert conditions plus the altitude similar to here.

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  2. Oooohhh I know who that special visitor is :-)!!!

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    1. No doubt you do Rita, I think you have been a follower of him longer than you have been with us.

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  3. OK. Super wow. Great pictures and I'm really excited to be reading about my local area on TWK&R! Especially after reading for so long about all the other great areas that you have been to. Don't remember reading about your first trip to Osoyoos back in 2007 though... haven't been following quite that long. Haha. Hope you have a great time in Oroville. We usually continue a bit further down to Omak or Lake Chelan. More shopping, Mexican restaurants, casinos and both have super fun bowling alleys! Lots to see and do and frequently enjoy RV'ing in Washington state. Sort of drooling thinking about the Taco truck right now! If you want to check out the kayak area, ride over to the park across from Princes center where Akens foods is and head straight to the back of the RV area. Lakefront sites and nice peaceful oxbows full of wildlife. Kind of South of the boat launch. Nice day use area and beach too. Beautiful sunny weather today so take advantage!! Summers over and rain coming by this weekend. Cheers.

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    1. I hope that we will do your area justice! :-)

      We re actually sitting in the parking lot of that exact park you are talking about as I am writing this reply. I guess great minds think alike. We came down here right after using the library's free WiFi to write yesterday's blog post.

      We were just saying to each other that this will be a perfect place to go for a ride in the kayak, not sure that it will happen today but I'm pretty sure we will get around to it in the next day or two.

      I guess if the rain is coming we had better get in our hike, bike and kayak ride before it starts. :-)

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    2. Carwash Scott - we are moving to Lumby in another week - we may have to pick your brain for good camping and areas to visit.

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  4. So happy that you and "The Legend" are meeting up! Have a great time with him. Will be reading both of your blogs every day to be the in spirit. 😀

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    1. Thank you Kent! This will be our third time meeting up with him. It is always fun to sit down and chat together.

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  5. Aren't you just south of the Canadian wine country? I'm sure the 5 liter box is less expensive, but there must be some fun tastings up north for you to enjoy and tell us about! Hope you find the missing parts quickly

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    1. Yes, but the Canadian wineries no longer give out tastings for free. They charge you! Plus, if we are tasting, we can no longer drive...

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  6. We can't wait to get back to the states for our winter travels, gas and booze so much cheaper and some food even with the exchange. Suzie can't ride her bike anymore for the last 4-5 years, because of some health issues, dizzy, balance is off and both were in need of new bikes, so had to dispose of them, Sad, I always enjoyed biking my whole life but I guess there is a time to call it quits. Yet I keep looking at some nice bikes .

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    1. We always like coming down here for the cheap gas and booze but we love coming down and exploring all the different areas as well, just like we do in Canada. Even with the more expensive prices we have still managed to keep our budget in line more or less this summer especially considering that we have traveled through some expensive areas. Still it is nice to get a little break on the wine, beer and gas. :-)

      Nothing stopping you from getting another bike George, you can go off on a bike ride by yourself, it's not quite the same as having someone else there but lots of people so it.

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    2. I could get another bike, But in my 70 th year I am afraid of falling on a trail and cutting myself badly, I have very thin skin now and constantly bleeding without even knowing it. So best to do lotsa walking, which I do 3 to 5 miles a day.

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    3. We understand! Keep up with the walking, nothing wrong with that at all. :-)

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  7. We just turned down an unserviced camp spot near Uclulet for only $75!! What, do we look gullible? Waterfront but still!!

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    1. Yike's, we couldn't imagine spending that much money on a serviced site let alone an unserviced one! We can totally understand you turning it down!

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  8. Glad you had a good ride.
    As long as you aren't going back and forth over the border you are Okay. On January 1 2015 the US passed what is called the 30 Day Rule. If you leave the US for less then 31 days they will all be counted as if you never left the US. Being Canadians that would count against the 182 Days maximum you are allowed in the US per year.
    Looking forward to getting back to cheaper Fuel and Parts prices.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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    1. Being Canadians that would count against the 182 Days maximum you are allowed in the US per year.

      Wouldn't affect us at all because we never spend anywhere close to 182 days per year in the U.S..

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    2. I am not sure what Rick/Kathy was trying to get at when they posted their comment. As a visitor to the US, leaving the US for either Mexico or Canada for 30 days or less and counting those days only deals from an immigration perspective and/or visa classification. An I-94 is normally granted to a visitor of the US. When you resume your visit you are readmitted for the balance of the time remaining on that originally granted I-94. Therefore the days are counted for it, so your original departure date remains the same as it was when you first entered. In other words, if you arrive at the border on June 1, and state that you are going to be a visitor to the US for 6 months, then go to Mexico for 30 days , you can not expect after you return, to add 30 days to your original quoted departure date. You are still required to leave the US 6 months from June 1. These I-94 visas are normally virtual today.

      Counting of days for a closer connection to another country is for income tax purposes. In these cases filling out the IRS 8840 your 30 day absence in the above example would not be counted, except for the day of departure and return.

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    3. This is one reason why we tell them at the border we are just passing through in order to get to either Mexico or Canada and then we give them a date of when we will then leave the USA, normally one month to six weeks on each trip either going or coming.

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  9. We really like boxed wine for the motorhome. It is a lot lighter and less chance of wine leaking:)

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    1. Yep, we totally agree and there are some really nice boxed wines out there. :-)

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  10. That bike trail looks like a lot of fun...would love to ride it on my mountain bike. Gorgeous photos and scenery there. I am a few (like 20!) days behind on your blog so look forward to catching up!

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    1. It was a lovely trail, I am sure that you would love it. There are also lots of bike trails in Canada's Okanagan Valley that you would love as too. :-)

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