Seeing the Columbia River from a different angle

  • posted Jun 2, 2011at 3:00 PM

I drive over the Columbia River on a regular basis and at this point it has simply become part of the scenery.
No longer do I see it as a majestic river that created the pacific northwest as we know it.
This changed after taking a trip with Columbia River Power Rafting.
The business, which offers rafting, fishing, site-seeing and day charter tours, brings the Columbia River alive through a totally different angle.
“I don’t think one-tenth of a per cent of Trail has been down the river like this,” Power Rafting owner Gary Crombie said.
After arriving at the Gyro boat launch our tour group was driven to Scotties...

Touring Redstone and the nifty new nine

  • posted Jun 2, 2011at 3:00 PM

I recently had the pleasure of touring Redstone Resort , including the newest nine holes with owners Cary Fisher and Robert Felsch. From start to finish it was easy to see they have a real passion for the resort and all it entails, including the housing development. I was amazed at how mature many of the holes have become in such a short time. Beginning on number 10, this long par 4 offers five tee boxes. Three of them require a drive over the creek, while the other two start you on the other side of the creek. Some of the side hill has been taken out, creating a flat landing area for your drive. Between the tee boxes is an old log building that was a stopover cabin for travellers on the Dewdney Trail. The trail runs through the course to Gopher Creek and you’ll see it again on some of the later holes. The plan is to incorporate the Trail’s history into the development. Soon, you will see a structure erected over the building to protect it from the elements and re-define the path as it makes its way through the course. The cart paths are all tilted to aid the quick removal of excess water and double seeding has controlled erosion. At the par 5 Number 11, which is a 620-yard for some, you’ll find five tee boxes. It all looks quite daunting from the championship tees, but is very different story from the forward boxes. The narrow appearance is deceiving as the fairway is quite wide. This hole has recently been seeded. The par 3 12th hole was the last to be seeded last fall. It’s in remarkable shape and I felt like I could tee up and play the hole right now. At the tee boxes for number 13 you’ll find a unique seating spot. A rock in the perfect shape of a bench was removed from one of the other fairways and placed there. Apparently, a few more of these rocks were found so you may find more of these seating arrangements by the time the new nine is open. This is a short par 4 with some strategically placed sand traps that will catch your sliced drive before it gets into the forest. Speaking of the forest, the whole area has been selectively logged in such a way that it doesn’t look like it happened at all. One of my first observations was that there are no pine trees. So, the pine beetle will not be destroying the beauty surrounding the course. There are, however, lots of beautiful cedar trees. There is a pristine feel as you walk through. There are a couple of holes where the walk is somewhat steep between the green and tee box. Having said that, I would not hesitate to walk the entire course. On to number 14, the second par 5, the fairway is dished on both sides, giving those like me hope that our ball will end up in the middle of the fairway. There are only a couple of holes where pin placement will be an issue and this is one of them. Crossing the creek to number 15 you can again see the Dewdney Trail. It’s a short par 4 with a dogleg. There is a lot of nature here as we saw a huge number of Monarch butterflies at the tee boxes. Number 16, is a short par 4, and the final hole to be seeded. The pond on the right shouldn’t come into play, but we all know it likely will. On the par 3 number 17 your drive takes you over the pond. The Rubberhead walking/biking trail passes through here and takes you to the number 18 tee boxes. Although most of the holes are deserving of the title, number 18 will likely be the signature hole of this course. Another five tee boxes to a downhill dogleg, a pond and a creek all contribute to the beauty of this hole. It sounds formidable, but I convinced myself I could play this hole by the time we had completed the walk. All fairways are seeded with Kentucky bluegrass and the greens with A4, which I’m told is the Ferrari of grasses. I do know that the more mature greens were in great shape. The subdivision will see 17 homes built this year. At the time of my visit, there were two foundations completed; two had footings in place and another two were in the process of digging. This first development will consist of 85 homes and paving has just been completed in this area. Heading towards the highway on the new entrance, which will be paved very soon, one passes through an area that will be developed with multi-family residences. These residences will hold one to two bedroom 750 to 1,100 square foot homes and will be released for sale very soon. All the homes will be near the golf course providing privacy and convenience. Throughout the subdivision you’ll see beautiful rock-work, all built with native material. I encourage you to visit Redstone Resort whether you’re a golfer or not. You’ll be amazed at the beauty of the whole development.

Hutch: Hiking paw prints on my heart

  • posted Jun 2, 2011at 3:00 PM

By Randy McCallum

Wound too tight? Try Champion Lakes

  • posted Jun 2, 2011at 3:00 PM

Few people would disagree that in today’s society, daily life can be complex, busy and stressful at times. Stress is a very real phenomenon. Depending on how you choose to begin or end your day you can greatly reduce the stress you feel, regardless of what the circumstances may be.

Taking time for yourself is possibly the most beneficially relaxing thing that should be on your to-do list.

We all need down-time and hiking or walking in the outdoors can be a fun way to create a healthy balance in your life and help you cope with stress.

This past week, after sitting at my desk for hours designing and developing content management systems for clients, I decided it was time to get out and hike.

So, I made some time and took the easy drive from Sunningdale, through Beaver Valley to the Champion Lakes Provincial Park to walk the trails connecting the three lakes.

These beautiful mountain lakes are surrounded by lush, green vegetation and moist interior cedar-hemlock, alpine fir and yellow pine. They form the headwaters of Landis Creek, which flows northward to join Champion Creek, a tributary of the Columbia River.

If you have never been to the Champion Lakes area, diversity is the word that best describes what...

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