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Planning your BC Wine Tour
Shuswap: Celista, Tappen, Salmon Arm & Enderby
The Shuswap has long been synonymous with house boating. Indeed Shuswap Lake offers more than 1,000 kilometres of shoreline, has 309 square kilometres of lake and is home to the largest houseboat fleet in the country. But did you know it is a developing wine region as well? Wines have been produced in the Shuswap area since 1997 and today is home to 10 wineries and 85 acres of vineyard. The top varieties planted are Ortega, Marechal Foch, Siegerrebe and Riesling. So imagine relaxing on the deck of a houseboat as it floats on a scenic, pristine lake, while sipping a chilled glass of crisp wine made just a stone’s throw away. Weather wise, it’s not too hot and not too cold. The coolest month is December, when it gets an average daily high of -1.6 C and low of -6.9. July is the warmest with an average high of 25.9 and low of 11.4. Precipitation is moderate with about 670 mm annually. The Shuswap is an area filled with with quaint communities that are linked by a gorgeous lake and surrounded by beautiful forested mountains. The region is known for being down-to-earth and friendly. It’s where you’ll find charming boutiques, cafes, a thriving artist community and a well-established and popular summer music extravaganza called the Salmon Arm Roots & Blues Festival. Another draw is the Adams River salmon run in October when observers get a chance to see millions of sockeye salmon return to spawn.
Nature lovers will appreciate Salmon Arm’s waterfront trails through a protected sanctuary featuring boardwalks, paths, a bird viewing tower and a Nature House. Then there’s Margaret Falls, which passes through a rock chasm and offers an enchanted forest feel. There’s a unique ecosystem of flowers, trees and shrubs and the water from Reinecker Creek cascades down a sheer rock face creating a natural shower. There’s also a hidden cave in the rock behind the falls. The Shuswap has a deeply rooted farming community and food enthusiasts are invited to do a farm tour that also includes the charming wineries of the area. It’s a terrific way to explore the regional food culture.