The newly minted Okanagan rail trail is jaw-dropping. Do yourself the favour and while the weather is still decent, take in the turquoise waters of Kalamalka Lake juxtaposed with autumn’s red, orange and yellows, and the rocky mountain outcrops so familiar around Kelowna.
There are numerous points along the trail to take a dip, hit the beach, pass a restaurant or find a park. There are other secluded sections of natural beauty where the trail is a only couple metres between cliff and water.
The entire trail from Vernon to Kelowna is around 50km although there is a gaping hole from Lake Country to the airport which has not been developed due to ongoing negotiations with bordering reserve and private land. For a short taste of the trail, the most stunning section is around Kakuli Bay Provincial Park which could be traversed on a ride from Vernon to Oyama. This section of trail is hard-packed gravel. The section from the waterfront in Kelowna to UBCO is now paved and quickly becoming a popular activity for locals and commuters.
For die-hards that want to complete the whole trail (a half day affair for experienced adults), the gap around Duck Lake can be overcome by a short ride on the highway. For the 10 minutes of highway riding on a wide shoulder, it is safe enough.