The Rywaczuks – Day 3: Crater Lake

Once again, we woke up to rain! But a little rain never hurt anyone, and we were so fortunate to have such a nice RV to stay warm and dry in.

We got the fire going, cooked some potatoes and eggs, drank coffee and enjoyed the quiet. Well, somewhat quiet. You see, this here trailer has Bluetooth and outdoor speakers, so we also listened to music!

We made a plan to go to Crater Lake—a spot I’ve never visited. Again, crazy since I’ve been in the Cariboo my whole life. I’d never even heard of it until a camper in the same campground told us to go check it out.

My parents came out to join us. Of course, my dad brought his fishing rod. The man never misses an opportunity to catch a fish.

My dad fished as a kid and has always enjoyed it. I’ve gone fishing with my dad several times. One time, I almost flipped his boat when I stood up in it. I’ll never forget that! I’ve never seen my dad’s eyes that big.

He loves to smoke fish—which I think is why he likes fishing so much. Every year, he and Von go to Prince Rupert to fish for halibut and salmon.

We packed a lunch, loaded up and drove to Crater Lake. Along the way, you could see the devastation from the infamous 2017 Elephant Hill wildfire. It was heartbreaking but amazing to see how fast nature bounces back. The green covering the ground everywhere and up the hillsides was so vibrant. It almost didn’t look real.

We parked by a few other vehicles already in the pull out. There’s a tiny sign and a triangle-shaped pullout, just off to the side of the road. It’s easy to miss, so drive slow on the way.

Thankfully, Von works in the backroads all over B.C., so he knew where we were going. We doused ourselves with bug spray and started on our trek.

It was so beautiful!

It had rock layers like Chasm (that we visited yesterday) and the lush green grass and wildflowers followed a trail right to a small waterfall. But we could hear what sounded like a much bigger one. So, the four of us and my dad hiked further in and found the most beautiful spot with another waterfall, moss covered rock walls, flowers, trees… The girls said it felt like we were in a magic place!

We hiked back to the main lookout and decided to try to get down to the lake. My dad, Von, Sophie and I scaled down a hill that didn’t look too steep. It wasn’t too bad. But, none of us were looking forward to the hike back up.

Once we reached the lake, my dad threw in his line and bam! Fish on! A nice little brook trout. Of course, he and Von did not want to leave yet. Not when the fish were biting.

So, Sophie and I scaled back up the hill and headed back to the truck. How long do you think we waited? Oh, maybe half hour, before I said, “Okay boys, that’s enough.” I went back down the trail and called for them to come back up.

“One more!” Von shouted up to me. He threw a line back out and boing! Down goes the bobber. Guess where those two will be headed for fishing in the near future?

Once back to the trailer, we had a rest by the fire. I went into the RV and we prepped a dinner of stuffed peppers, garlic focaccia bread, corn on the cob and prawns. Not your typical camping food, but why not!

After dinner, I cleaned up. Which, I have to say—the nice big stainless sink was sure a plus in this RV. I haven’t seen one that big before. It was convenient for a big feast and dirty dishes. The girls always help with cleanup. They took the garbage to the garbage can a few sites over, and the recycling to the recycling bin—which is so nice to see at most provincial campgrounds. 

We finished up, headed down to the lake for one more kayak before we started packing up for the morning exit. We love camping at Green Lake and Sunset Provincial Park. I’m a huge sucker for a good sunset and the ones there have never disappointed. It’s a quieter campground and has not one, but two dog beaches—which is a huge plus for a family with two dogs.

No matter what the weather brings, getting out camping with my family is one of my favourite things to do. Especially, when we can be either inside a trailer playing card games or sitting around a fire.

Camping, for us, is getting away from the go go of busy family life, and slowing down a little to enjoy nature, enjoy each other, explore, just chill—or both! Exploring the Cariboo is how my family stays connected.


On Key

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