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Ride Info

Ride Overview

Vineyards and Rail Trails in the Okanagan Valley

  • Arrival
  • 6/8/2023
  • Departure
  • 6/21/2023
  • Ride Director
  • Margaret Slack
  • Ride Co-Director
  • Elie Bowles
  • Starting Location
  • Kelowna, B.C.
  • Finishing Location
  • Kelowna, B.C.
  • Estimated Cost †
  • $2200
  • Deposit
  • $1200
  • Number of Riders
  • 7 (min. 18 /max. 24)
  • Space Available
  • 17
  • No. of Pending Riders
  • 0

Ride Rating

2B

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† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.

Ride Description

OVERVIEW

      Parts of the Okanagan, in British Columbia, Canada have been likened to the vine covered rolling hills of southern France and Northern Italy. The extensive decommissioned rail trail system throughout the entire Okanagan Valley and the stellar accommodations in hotels plus our rolling hills scenery, all combine to  deliver rides that are second to none in joy and ease of visiting  " Tuscany on a budget".  

This is the second year we are offering this partial fixed base tour in which we will be staying in 3 well situated hotels. We will spend the first 4 nights in Kelowna, then 4 nights in Penticton and 3 nights in Osoyoos. We then cycle back to Penticton for another night prior to making our way back to Kelowna for the last night to finish our tour.  There are 4 mandatory ride days between the locations.

We will be spending a few days in each of these locations, riding rail trails, cycling through vineyards on secondary paved back country roads with little traffic and stellar paved surfaces.  There will also be opportunities to explore on your own in each one of these lakeside communities.

On six separate days we have provided scenic routes to cycle on the hard packed gravel surface of the famous Kettle Valley Railway (KVR) / Myra Canyon trail systems, the Okanagan Rail Trail near Vernon, and also in more remote areas of the KVR with mixed gravel surfaces - these will all be the highlight rides of an amazing adventurous 14 day tour of our Wine Capital of BC.  

We also throw in a couple of hill climb days to whet our appetites for serious thrilling descents through the grasslands and Ponderosa Forests, cattle ranches and lake country.  

E-bikes and tandems are allowed on a case-by-case basis.  Please contact the ride leader before signing up.  

 RIDE RATING

This ride is a 2B! (some gravel).  There are 4 mandatory cycling days on pavement with a shuttle provided to avoid busy highway traffic and poor trail conditions on the KVR.    The average daily distance on the mandatory rides is 70 km (45 mi) with an average elevation of 535 m (1755 ft)

There are 8 optional days, offering 2B or less rides on a mixture of pavement and gravel (packed, loose and sandy).  All rail trail sections have a grade of 2.2 %.  Other offered rides range from 30 km to 120 km, with an elevation range of 100 m to 1230 m.

Riders are expected to be comfortable riding on a multitude of surfaces, including compact dirt, loose dirt, sand and bike paths.

It is important to carry sufficient water on the rides as there may not always be a water stop nearby.  The Okanagan is a semi arid, desert environment.

WEATHER

June weather in the Okanagan is usually great with some precipitation, so always plan on rain...you never know.   Temperatures range from average lows of 43 F (6 C) to average highs of 74 F (23 C)
Be prepared at all times of year by bringing rain and wind gear and a dry change of clothing.

LODGING and MEALS 

The tour includes 13 nights accommodation in 3 hotels (3.5-4.5 star), 13 breakfasts ,  4 group dinners  , 13 social hours with snacks and beverages 

We will begin and end the tour for a total of 5 nights at the upscale Best Western Plus in Kelowna, 5 nights at the conveniently located Days Inn in Penticton, and 3 nights at the recently renovated Best Western Plus in Osoyoos.

VAN SUPPORT

The rented van will transport your luggage on the 4 mandatory ride days.  Participants are expected to ride the entire route on those mandatory days and will be transported only in the case of emergency.   Riders should be able to handle their own bike repairs and at a minimum, know how to change a tire.   We stongly recommend carrying 2 tire tubes with you.

BICYCLES 

Your bicycle must have tires with some tread that are a minimum of 35mm width !  Smaller size tires are not recommended due to the rail trail surfaces not being paved, with some short,  loose sandy sections.

E-bikes and tandems may be used, after consulting with your tour leader prior to signing up.   There are bike shuttles during the tour which may be able to accommodate a minimum number e-bikes and tandems.  One of the shuttles will transport riders and bikes 25 km (16 mi)  uphill (12% grade, partly gravel) to Myra Canyon to start the 72 km (45 mi) ride through the mountains at a 2.2% grade.  Shuttles will also be provided to avoid very busy highway sections on some routes.

**NOTE: Participants MUST have larger tires (min 35 mm width) if they choose to ride the gravel trails on any of the optional days noted below.  If participants would like to ride those days, but do not have larger tires, we recommend renting a suitable bike for maximum enjoyment of the remote and sometimes rough trails.  Hoodo Adventure Company in Penticton has offered us rental bikes suitable for the terrain, at a favorable rate.  Comfort/hybrid bikes at $55 Cdn per day and E-bikes at $100 Cdn per day.  Let your ride leader know if you are interested in renting a bike.

Gravel riding days:
Day 2 - The shuttle will take you to Vernon to ride south along the Okanagan Rail Trail for 30(?) kms, which is all packed gravel.  The rest of the ride is paved.
Day 4 - From the Myra Canyon shuttle drop off point, 30 kms of trail is a mixture of hard packed gravel (20 km)with loose and sometimes rocky, sandy sections (20 km), with the balance of the ride on a paved downhill road.
Day 6 - The last 10 km section is a mixed gravel surface.  An option on this day is to cycle the last 10 km on the highway to Penticton.
Day 7 - Penticton local ride options include a beautiful scenic section of the KVR to the Little Tunnel, which is all hard packed gravel (20 km)
Day 8 - Penticton to Summerland options includes 15 km of rough gravel trail with a 2.2% grade, or 18 km on an undulating gravel road. 
Day 13 - The shuttle will take participants and their bikes to Chute Lake Resort, situated on the KVR , where they will start cycling towards Kelowna for a 34 km gravel ride on mixed surface ranging from loose gravel to soft sandy sections, with a grade of 2.2%.

All participants must be self-sufficient due to limited cell service in some areas of the tour. We will not ride as a “stay together” group, and thus riders must bring (and be able to use) a navigation device (e.g., Garmin, Wahoo, smartphone with RWGPS, etc.) or plan to navigate via cue sheet and map which we will provide if requested. 

LOGISTICS

The tour starts and ends in Kelowna.  Riders can fly or drive there.  Major airlines that fly into Kelowna International Airport (YLW) are Westjet, Air Canada, and Alaska Airlines.    A complimentary shuttle to the hotel may be available at certain times, please check with the Best Western Plus before you arrive.  The ride starts with a social hour at 6 pm at the hotel in Kelowna on June 8, 2023 and ends in Kelowna on June 21, 2023 after breakfast.
   
You may ship your bikes ahead to the Best Western Plus Hotel in Kelowna, and you may also leave your empty bike boxes in a designated room at the hotel during our bike tour, because we will be spending the last night there.  Please be aware that shipping a bike across the Canadian border may incur import duties.  There are no import duties if you bring your bike with you in your vehicle or on the plane.

Riders are asked to bring two small carry on bags (able to carry on a plane) each weighing less than 25 pounds, rather than larger suitcases that are hard to lift and pack on to the van.  Larger luggage can be stored in a designated room at the hotel in Kelowna during the tour.

Free parking is provided at the hotel for those travelling by car.

Bike rentals are the responsibility of participants.  Ask your tour leader for suggestions.

Should any forest fire risk become a specific concern, the ride leader will review the situation with tour participants.

COST AND ADMINISTRATION

The estimated cost of this bike tour is $ 2200.00  plus the $50 BAC registration fee.    The tour includes 13 nights accommodation, storage of bike boxes and extra luggage, 13 breakfasts,  4 group dinners (includes 1 drink from restaurant bar ), 13 social hours with snacks and beverages, shuttles,  RideWithGPS tracks which provide downloads to gpx tracks and to smart phones for offline use.

Not included are 9 dinners, all lunches.

Initial tour deposit of $ 1200.00   plus the non-refundable BAC ride registration fee of $50 is due by credit card when you sign up.  As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List.  To contact the Ride Leader, "click" the name at the top of this Ride Description.

Second and final payment of $1000.00 is due no later than March 31,2023.

Depending on currency exchange rates, there may be an adjustment in the amount of the final payment

SINGLES AND SOLO POLICY

It is recommended that singles who want a roommate try to find their own. However, after receipt of the initial deposit, a single without a roommate will be placed on the ride and given until March 31, 2023 to find a roommate. If they are unable to find a roommate, they will have the option to receive a full refund (minus the BAC fee and payment processing fee) or pay the $975.00  solo supplement and stay on the ride. 
If a single pays the supplement, they may continue to seek a roommate, but must plan to participate without a roommate if necessary. The Ride Leader will assist by attempting to match singles who apply for the ride. Solo supplement payments need to be sent to the BAC office by March 31, 2023.  Checks should be made out to “BAC” with a notation of the tour name included on the check. They should be mailed to: Bicycle Adventure Club, PO Box 23998, San Diego, CA 92193.

CANCELLATION POLICY

The BAC ride registration fee and payment processing fee is not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled due to participation below stated minimum requirements. Refunds of tour payments will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped. The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour’s remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations. If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund will be made at that time. If the cancelling participant can't be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and final expense report are completed. If a single participant cancels and another roommate cannot be found, in addition to other costs that cannot be recouped the cancelling roommate may also be liable for the solo supplement fee of the roommate remaining on the tour. BAC encourages members to purchase trip cancellation insurance.

RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY

Please remember that BAC Ride Leaders are volunteers, and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well-maintained bicycles. All participants should accept responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from Ride Leader. While on the ride, support your Ride Leader with offers to help with various tasks such as happy hour preparation and clean-up. Please do not interfere with the ride by inviting non-participants onto any portion of the ride or tour. Please keep the Ride Leader informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Leader’s decisions.

Before participating in any BAC tour, you should assess whether your medical and travel insurance coverage is sufficient. BAC maintains insurance that covers expenses related to accidents, medical emergencies such as sudden and unexpected sickness, and repatriation. This coverage applies when touring outside the US, regardless of your nationality, with the exception of Canadians cycling within Canada who are not covered. It will cover you door-to-door for a maximum of 90 days but will expire if you make a side trip not related to the BAC tour for more than 7 days before or after. There is limited coverage for a family member to join a covered person in an emergency. The policy covers the cost of treatment for Covid and other unexpected illnesses, but not quarantine. You should ensure that your vaccinations are up to date.

COVID

All participants must be fully vaccinated including booster shots if applicable and be prepared
to present vaccination documentation for viewing by Ride Leader if requested.

We will invite participants to a Zoom meeting about  45-60 days prior to the tour start date to finalize our COVID protocols. You may be asked to wear PPE in public, maintain social distance in public and limit social gathering in public according to the government's mandate. Negative COVID tests may be required.

SIGN-UP
To register for this ride, use the sign-up links just above the Ride Description.  After preliminary acceptance, you will be moved to the pending list and receive an email requesting you to go back to the BAC site to digitally accept the terms of the Release of Liability (ROL) , and pay the non-refundable BAC Ride Registration Fee and Tour Deposit by credit card.  As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List.  BAC members with questions may contact the Ride Leader by "clicking" the name at the top of this Ride Description.


 


Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 office@bicycleadventureclub.org

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