Nissans in the Okana­gan

WORDS AND PHO­TOS BY KOLYN RADBOURNE

4WDrive - - Club News & Events -

I think that call­ing your­self a four­wheeler sets you apart from the norm. I mean plenty of peo­ple en­joy the out­doors by hik­ing and bik­ing, and oth­ers pur­chase spe­cial­ized equip­ment such as UTVs for mo­tor­ized ex­plo­ration. But it is a rare per­son who chooses to take their daily driver, you know the ve­hi­cle you will need on Mon­day morn­ing to take the kids to school, out into the woods on the week­end to ex­plore and chal­lenge their driv­ing skills.

Among th­ese peo­ple you get groups usu­ally as­so­ci­ated around a par­tic­u­lar brand of ve­hi­cle. Most no­tably Jeeps and Toy­otas. Well in late Septem­ber of 2018, a smaller even more eclec­tic group met for a Sun­day trail ride. The Okana­gan chap­ter of the BCNis­san4WD group. With a whop­ping four peo­ple com­mit­ted to com­ing out on the groups Face­book page, one of them from the lower main­land (edroughly the area from Chilli­wack to White Rock to Van­cou­ver), it was a rare group in­deed.

We met at 11 o’clock at a quaint coun­try gas sta­tion out­side Kelowna, the kinda place that serves as the ‘emer­gency ev­ery­thing’ store for the lo­cals when they can’t make it into town. Un­for­tu­nately, when we ar­rived we re­ceived news that the event or­ga­nizer had a fam­ily med­i­cal emer­gency and wouldn’t be able to come. So once we were all ac­counted for we had a 2013 Fron­tier Pro4-x, a 2014 Xter­rra Pro4-x, and a clas­sic D21 Hard­body. Hav­ing a copy of the BC Back­roads map­book and some area maps down­loaded onto the Gaia GPS, I was elected to be nav­i­ga­tor.

The first track we headed for ap­peared to be a very old loop road off the Goudie Main. Un­for­tu­nately, the track we were look­ing for seemed to have been swal­lowed by the for­est, and the next road over was be­ing re­claimed by na­ture with travel along it un­com­fort­ably tight.

Back out on the main we reeval­u­ated and de­cided to link some less rus­tic routes on the map and make for Pos­till Lake. Pos­till Lake is one of many lakes in the high plateau above Okana­gan Lake. It is a very

pop­u­lar fish­ing lake in the area with both brook and rain­bow trout. There are sev­eral other qual­ity lakes in the area, so if you fancy wet­ting a line, don’t for­get your rod and reel. There is also a trail around the lake for bik­ers, hik­ers and skiers.

By this point cell ser­vice was in­ter­mit­tent and I had only down­loaded the maps for the more southerly ar­eas we had planned to ex­plore. The road north ended at a gate as the lake is also a reser­voir, but an­other track con­tin­ued to the east. We were get­ting into some in­ter­est­ing travel now. Com­ing around a cor­ner, we saw the re­mains of what we as­sumed to be a stolen Ford Ex­plorer rolled over on the side of the road, rid­dled with shot­gun pel­let holes. We stopped to pon­der how they rolled the truck on this straight bit of track. As one mem­ber of our group noted “There is re­ally no limit to what drunkin’ stu­pid­ity can ac­com­plish.” The road con­tin­ued north be­com­ing very nar­row, most likely pop­u­lar with dirt bikes and UTVs, noth­ing to tech­ni­cal but much more en­joy­able than the wide wash­board mains. We stopped and en­joyed the lake for a bit as the threat of rain passed over­head.

We started down the Pos­till main from the lake. We bid farewell to the D21, and the re­main­ing two trucks con­tin­ued to ex­plore. Find­ing a new track head­ing north of the main road we came across a huge washout, which if prop­erly equipped would be an ad­ven­ture. Hav­ing two mostly stock rigs and no winch, we opted to take a route that led onto a multi use sec­tion of the Okana­gan High Rim trail. Pri­mar­ily a long dis­tance hik­ing trip con­nect­ing Ver­non to Kelowna. This sec­tion pro­vided the most en­ter­tain­ing driv­ing of the day with a cou­ple of good mud holes. The first hid some big rocks and the sec­ond was deeper than ex­pected. The road de­posited us at an in­cred­i­ble view of the Okana­gan val­ley, from Lake Coun­try to Kelowna. It was get­ting late so we de­cided to call it a day here, with the road con­tin­u­ing up the hill wait­ing to be ex­plored an­other day.

Jar­rod get­ting some wheel hop.

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