July 20, 2009 | Tips from Travellers >
Penticton, Sightseeing Tours
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As with the 2003 fires in Kelowna, many people believe that the "Okanagan" is on fire. Fortunately this is a very large valley. While there is a fair amount of smoke in the air there are definitely no fires close to Penticton. The weather is warm, the skies are blue (mostly) and its a great time to be on the beach.
Of course, Highway 97 to Penticton is closed as of July 20 at 2:30pm, but there is talk that it may open by Tuesday. There are alternate routes, however. Just yesterday I took Hwy 5A from Merritt to Princeton and then Hwy 3 and 3A from Princeton to Penticton. Absolutely beautiful drive! Stunning scenery. I had no idea how many deciduous trees were in the area around Aspen Grove (although the name should have given me a hint).
Besides Hwy 5A, travelers can take Hwy 33 to Route 201 (well travelled forest service road) directly to Penticton. Another option is to take a southern route to Osoyoos and then follow Hwy 97 north to Penticton.
Bottom line: we're still here, we're not on fire, and the weather is fantastic.