advertisement

Biking -- The Kettle Valley Railway's Myra Canyon route near Kelowna has reopened (many of the trestles burned during the Okanagan wildfires in 2003). Although the route is often accessed from Naramata, bikers in Kelowna can reach the east side of the route by following Hwy. 33 south from Kelowna. Inquire at Sports Rent, 3000 Pandosy St. (tel. 250/861-5699), for other mountain biking routes in the area, including bike parks at Apex Mountain Resort and Silver Star Mountain Resort.

Golf -- The Okanagan's warm climate is good for more than just growing grapes and apricots. The valley also is home to 50 golf courses; for information, contact www.totabc.com/trellis/golf. The greens fees throughout the Okanagan Valley range from C$65 to C$175 and are a good value not only because of the beautiful locations, but also for the quality of service you'll find at each club.

Harvest Golf Club, 2725 Klo Rd. (tel. 250/862-3103), is one of the finest courses in the Okanagan, a championship course in an orchard setting. The Okanagan Golf Club, off Hwy. 97 near the airport (tel. 800/898-2449 or 250/765-5955), has two 18-hole courses, the Jack Nicklaus-designed Bear Course and the Les Furber-designed Quail Course.

Hiking -- The closest trails to Kelowna are in Knox Mountain Park, immediately north of the city. From downtown, follow Ellis Street to its terminus, where there's a parking area and trail head. The most popular trail climbs up the cactus-clad mountainside to the summit, from which you'll enjoy magnificent views of the lake and orchards.

Skiing & Snowboarding -- One of British Columbia's largest ski areas and one of North America's snowboarding capitals, Big White Ski Resort, Parkinson Way, Kelowna (tel. 250/765-3101, 250/765-SNOW [7669] for snow report, or 250/765-8888 for lodge reservations; www.bigwhite.com), is famed for its hip-deep champagne powder snow. The resort spreads over a broad mountain, featuring long, wide runs. Skiers here cruise open bowls and tree-lined glades. There's an annual average of 7.5m (25 ft.) of fluffy powder, so it's no wonder the resort's 118 named runs are so popular. There are 16 lifts, capable of carrying 28,000 skiers per hour. For snowboarders, there is a 150m-long (492-ft.) super pipe with 5.1m (17-ft.) transitional walls and a 120m (394-ft.) standard half pipe. The resort also offers more than 25km (16 miles) of groomed cross-country ski trails, a recreational racing program, and night skiing. Adult lift tickets are C$71. Big White is 55km (34 miles) southeast of Kelowna off Hwy. 33.

Only a 15-minute drive from Westbank, Crystal Mountain Resorts Ltd. (tel. 250/768-5189, or 250/768-3753 for snow report; www.crystalresort.com) has a range of ski programs for all types of skiers, specializing in clinics for children, women, and seniors. The resort's 20 runs are 80% intermediate-to-novice grade and are serviced by one double chair and two T-bars. The runs are equipped for day and night skiing. There's also a half pipe for snowboarders. Lift tickets start at C$46 adults and C$38 children.

Watersports -- The marina just north of City Park has a great many outfitters that can rent you a boat, jet ski, windsurfing board, or paddle boat. If you want to call ahead, try Dockside Marine Centre (tel. 250/765-3995; www.docksidemarine.com), which offers a wide range of boats and watercraft. To try parasailing, call Kelowna Parasail Adventures (tel. 250/868-4838), which offers flights for C$67.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.