Thursday, June 18, 2015

Ryan's Stag at Chinook Lake

Trip Date: June 2015

Ryan and Ashley are getting married at the end of June, which means the boys get to host another bachelor party!  Keeping up with tradition (please see previous posts about Ben's, Dan's, and my bachelor parties) we decided that a camping trip was in order.  Ryan was hoping for a campground with a lake so we could re-live a past mini-meekend experience that took place in Revelstoke, British Columbia.  Ben did some research online and found, what appeared to be, the perfect spot; Chinook Lake in the Crowsnest Pass region of the province.  Turns out the campground and lake were better than any of us could have hoped for!

Chinook Lake Campground Map
Chinook Lake Campground is part of the Chinook Provincial Recreation Area and features 99 campsites on three separate loops.  Dan and I headed out Friday afternoon and got to the campground just in time, as there were only two sites left on the lake loop, which is where we wanted to be as it's walking distance to the lake.  The rest of the crew weren't far behind us, but they had to stop and fix a flat tire on Ben's tent trailer.

The well-treed campsites of Chinook Lake Campground
Chinook Lake
The first night was pretty low-key.  We cooked a lot of meat for dinner and drank several beers.  We even got into a bottle of scotch that Matt brought with him!  Needless to say we had a lot of fun sitting around the campfire; talking, laughing, and making plans for the following day.

I couldn't resist taking my stand-up paddleboard onto the glassy lake the next morning
Paddling on Chinook Lake
The following afternoon we broke out the camp games and had the Stag Olympics.  We played horseshoes, ladder golf, and washer toss, before competing in off-road bocce ball.  Yours truly managed to stay undefeated throughout the Olympics, but had an extremely close call in the bocce event.  Ryan, or Ryanna as he was called throughout the day, had to participate while wearing a sexy dress and a blonde wig; giving him a distinct advantage over his opponents!!

After the Stag Olympics we hit the lake with a variety of inflatable rafts.  The water was chilly, but not nearly as cold as the glacier fed lakes closer to home.  The lake was busy with other recreational users and several fisherman, all of whom enjoyed seeing Ryanna in a skimpy bikini top and a bridal cowboy hat complete with full-length veil.

There's a 2km trail that wraps around the perimeter of Chinook Lake.  After dinner the six of us decided to do a little exploring and ended up hiking the length of the aforementioned trail.  The hike provided some great views of the surrounding peaks and gave us a new perspective of the lake itself.

Hiking on the lakeshore trail
Crowsnest Mountain standing above Chinook Lake
Ben, Rolando, Ryan, and Dan
We spent the rest of that evening drinking beer, rum, and scotch around a roaring campfire.  I don't have to tell you that we all had to shake more than a few cobwebs from the brain the next morning!  The hangover didn't stop me from taking my SUP out for another paddle on Sunday morning.  The lake was perfectly calm once again and I wanted to sneak in one last tour of the lake before packing up the campsites.  After the final paddle I was treated to the best breakfast sandwich I have ever eaten, courtesy of Ben.  He has now set the far incredibly high for himself for our next camping trip!

The view from on top of the SUP
A large dead tree stands just off-shore with Mt. Tecumseh in the background
There was a beaver lodge at the far end of the lake
In my opinion the bachelor party was a huge success and hopefully Ryan would agree with that statement.  With the stag safely in the rear view we are now looking forward to the wedding, which is happening in Penticton, B.C. later this month.  I've never been down to the Okanagan region before, but I know the whole weekend is going to be an incredible experience!  Until next time...

We all managed to survive another stag party/meekend in the woods!