Up again saying our goodbyes to the working class (Kyle and Kate), we and the rental car made tracks for the Kootenay’s, Sun Peaks Snow Resort to be exact. Even though we’d driven this many a times, we still managed to get lost and take the long route though Chilliwack trying to avoid the toll road.
Having done a season here in 2009-2010 we were headed back to visit old friends. Sarah worked in The Globe, a tapas place that’s since changed hands and is now Voyageur. (Globe is still open at Big White Ski Resort and has a top notch menu). Matt used to work at Mountain High Pizza which hands down has the best pizzas anywhere in the world (97% on urbanspoon.com!). Trust us we’ve tried to find better and 99% of people who have tried the freshness of quality ingredients agree, MHP is the BOMB.
Sadly there was no snow (start of September) though we both started to succumb to the urge to take on another season. Shaking off this inclination he found Schulmtzy’s house. Ryan and his, now pregnant wife Jill (yep it’s baby making season) had just moved into a new house that has some of the most sought after views of the ski runs of Sun Peaks.
We headed down to an old haunt at the bottom of the village, conveniently at the end of a run called, funnily enough, Bottoms. Pulling up a seat at the bar with another Mountain High Pizza crew member, Jase, the barman was surprised to see two familiar faces. Catching up with other locals as they came and went over the night, the time had come to ring the bell. Having only 5 of us at the bar it was a cheap one for Matt. Ringing the bell means that you have to shout everyone seated at the bar, plus a few standing, a shot each. Trust me when we warn you about this as we’ve had a mate ring it once and before the bar tender had finished pouring the first round the daft bastard goes and rings it again, only to realize he didn’t have the funds to cover it and had to lean on a mate to cover him for CAD$200.
Leaving here they gave us the village tour and update on who’s doing what and how and when until we ended up at top of the village at Voyageur. After catching up with others here, we finished the night stumbling down the road due to being feed Jagermiester till it came out of our noses.
Rising early the next morning with, again, a huge day of driving, we headed back to Missoula, Montana to collect Betty with her new engine. Taking the number 5A we wound our way to the border passing Allison Lake, dust devils and through Hedley, an old mining town perched precariously on the side of a cliff.
We also had our second run in with the police when Matt was clocked doing 75mph in a 50mph zone (that’s 25km over for the majority of us who use the metric system). Luckily the hire car, combined with us being Australian and Matt having a British drivers license must have meant too much paperwork, so he waved us off with a friendly warning and a warm goodbye.
Once across the border the hunger kicked in so we stopped at the nearest love handle inducing burger joint. We opted for Zips as it had the impassable sign advertising Huckleberry shakes. Seeing these advertised everywhere we had to try one and man we were not disappointed. These are now both of our favourite shakes. Dumping the car back at the airport we rode back to Unique Auto and curled up in Betty to get some shut eye, for tomorrow Missoula was finally getting a checking out.