A Charmed Life
Photography by: Cheryl Jaggers Photography
Take a photographic journey with her book,
Creston Valley Beauty.
Drop by our Farmer Market for fresh produce and local made treasures. Stay informed about local food with Jesse Willicome's blog articles at the Creston Valley Food Hub.
The two remaining grain elevators are landmarks and represent a rich history. The Kunze Fine Art Gallery is located at the grain elevators.
“The Trust is committed to helping preserve the region’s history and share it with future generations. In some cases, this means supplying a grant to help a community group or local government to conserve an important building. In Creston’s case, the best option was for the Trust to purchase the elevators.” – CBT
A History of Creston's Downtown Grain Elevators book is available through the Creston Museum.
A Ken Alexander photograph.
Paddle Kootenay Lake and its tributaries
There are many places here to explore by kayak or canoe.
For instance, you can paddle through the marshes, on the channels, on the Kootenay River and even up the Goat River, on Duck Lake and on the Kootenay Lake. Kuskanook Park (a raw natural setting) floods in the spring and makes for an enchanting paddle through the Cottonwood Trees (see photo above) .
To find kayak and canoe water access online visit www.crestonvalleytrails.ca. If you do not have a kayak or canoe yet you might want to try renting the experience from www.paddleandportage.ca .
While out paddling don’t be surprised if from a safe distance you spot a Moose and her calf drink from the water or a happy bear shower itself with a spray of droplets scooped from the channel or an Eagle watching you dip your paddle or an Osprey dive for its dinner. These are but a few interludes one experiences as they explore and observe from the tranquil waters throughout this valley.
During the winter you can try walking on water or skating or just gazing through the ice but I suggest you check to ensure the ice is thick enough for your weight to be safe.
About This Golfing Mecca
Imagine living where you have over 30 affordable beautiful golf courses to choose from. Some are only minutes away and others take a couple hours of scenic driving. The sophistication and size of the courses range from small folksy to large masterpieces.
The Creston Valley Golf Course, within the Creston Valley is a professionally designed course with beautiful vistas.
Along the East Shore of the Kootenay Lake in Crawford Bay is the Kokannee Springs Golf Course. As a flagship of the Kootenay region, Kokannee Springs Golf attracts golfers from far and wide. A little further down the road locals enjoy playing a round at the small friendly Riondel Golf Course.
Take a half hour drive across the US border from Creston and meet the folks on Mirror Lake Golf Course at Bonners Ferry Idaho or head west and play a game at the Salmo Golf Course.
Other golf courses include:
Hang gliding, paragliding or ultra lite flying are all possible from Thompson Mountain and Goat Mountain (over looking the Creston Valley).
The Best Fishing in BC
Right here and within 3 hours drive we have access to some of the best fresh water fishing in North America. The Fresh Water Fisheries Society of BC stocks 200 lakes within the Kootenays. We just happen to be in the center. There are many locations to fish in the east Kootenays and the west Kootenays. The society also provides learning opportunities, including the teaching of all ages how to fish and about conservation. A fishing license is required for 16 years and older.
Kootenay Lake is well known among fishermen for its Rainbow Trout and Kokanee Salmon. However its next door neighbour Duck Lake BC, offers truly unique Bass fishing opportunities, and is one of the best ice fishing lakes in BC. The best time to catch a Bass? Right in the middle of winter, through the ice. You'll likely catch a whole lot of Yellow Perch as well, so its rarely dull. Be sure to grab a permit from the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area before you head out!
Women Who Fish
Regardless of your age, or fitness level, Fly Fishing is very beneficial for well being and therapeutic in many ways. It helps connect us to nature and helps us stay focused and in-the-moment. Your senses become alive and sharp, and you are fully engaged and aware of your surroundings. You are exhilarated and calm at the same time. Fly Fishing is great in helping to reduce stress. Join the network of local women who fish.
About Spectacular Hikes
There are many spectacular hikes in the Creston and Kootenay Lake valley. Their level of challenge to hikers’ ability ranges from easy to very challenging. However, the easy hikes are not any less beautiful and fulfilling than the difficult ones. It all depends on what type of hike you want.
There are few informal hiking groups to join up with. For instance, the Boswell Hiking Group has well over 100 hikers. You can also find out about trails by visiting the Trails for Creston Valley Society web site and also Pilot Point Trails.
You will also want to be aware of bear and cougar activity in the area you will be hiking in. Unless there is a trail closure you can safely enjoy the wilderness with some wildlife awareness knowledge. Bear Aware is a good site for learning more.
Rural Safety Considerations
There is no doubt that weather patterns have changed. I have personally noticed farmers are now able to grow crops in some areas of the valley that were previously considered impossible, even with the use of new technologies and hybrid fruits. Also, I have noticed the forest fire season starting earlier in the summer and there are more fires than in the past.
Before lighting a campfire check to see if there are any fire ban restrictions. Also, before heading into the back-country be sure to find out if there are any forest fires in the area. Even if there are no fires please take extra precaution to avoid accidentally creating one yourself. If you see a wildfire report by calling *5555 or 1-800-663-5555. It is advisable to create a "grab and go" kit to have handy, just in case a forest fire is threatening your safety.
This area is recognized as being an important wildlife corridor and therefore it isn't surprising that living with wildlife is big part of the local lifestyle. It is important to always consider how your actions are affecting wildlife. For instance, we do not want bears becoming used to eating garbage and ripen fruit left on the ground to rot. It encourages bears to frequent residential areas. This will put people at risk and end the bears life. Find out how to create wild-safe yard by visiting Wild Safe BC. You can call your Grizzly Bear sighting into RAPP line 1-877-952-7277 or #7277 on Telus mobility network.
The longest free ferry ride in the world transports passengers across the Kootenay Lake year round from Kootenay Bay to Balfour and it is a part of Highway 3A. Many passengers also enjoy the cruise for the scenery.
Most boaters in the winter are fishermen. However, once the temperature warms up boaters come out in all types of crafts (except thru-hull noisy boats are frowned upon). Most people use their boats as a taxi to get them to isolated public beaches for picnicking or to use their boat as a swim pad or to tour the shoreline. Pictographs can be seen across from Kuskanook Harbour and north of Riondel.
Kayaking is becoming very popular. There are an abundance of places to kayak in the Creston Valley and Kootenay Lake (including upper mountain lakes).
Backcountry - in your backyard
Within 30 minutes of leaving Creston you can drive to Stagleap Provincial Park, on the summit of the Salmo - Creston section of Hwy 3, for back-country skiing and to snowshoe. Just off the highway this popular backcountry area offers easy access, and epic amounts of snow. Webcam
5 Ski Resorts within 2hrs
In their off seasons these ski locations also provide for some great hiking and biking experiences.
Mountain culture is something that is experienced. However, some have the gift to describe it well. Check out the Kootenay Mountain Culture magazine.