Saturday, December 6, 2014

We did it again; now we're back

Mountains along the Strait of Georgia

Trumpeter swans on coast in front of our B&B

Cow and calf moose cross Hwy 3 near Princeton, B.C.

Ferry to Powell River, B.C. crosses strait
For the second consecutive year, Brenda and I took a cross-continent driving trip in late-November. We just got back yesterday evening. We were visiting our son and grandsons on Vancouver Island.
And, once again, Mother Nature was kind to us. We made the entire 8,000-km round-trip without ever being stopped by a snowstorm. Whew!
This time we drove west to British Columbia via the Trans-Canada Highway which navigates through the high Rocky Mountains via the Kicking Horse Pass and Rogers Pass. We came east through the southern B.C. Route 3 highway that has the very highest pass - Kootenay -- at 1775 meters.
This latter route was a bit slower but was extremely beautiful and we saw a load of wildlife along it such as moose, elk and mule deer. On the more northern Trans-Canada route we also had a very large bighorn sheep step right over the guardrail in front of us. It was on a hairpin turn where we were only driving 40 km-h but on the snow-packed road we still slid to within a couple of feet of the big sheep before stopping.
Now it's time to get back to business. Let me catch-you-up on what has been happening.
Brenda was elected president of Nature and Outdoor Tourism Ontario, a province-wide organization that serves all of the outdoor tourism industry in Ontario. That happened in early November at the first annual Northern Ontario Tourism Summit in Thunder Bay. This summit combined the efforts of NOTO and Tourism Northern Ontario, a group that encompasses government, marketing organizations and tourism operators.
In Bow Narrows Camp business, it's time to contact everybody with existing reservations to secure those bookings with deposits. I will start sending letters to everyone immediately. You don't need to wait for a letter, however. You can call us at our winter number: 807-475-7246 with a credit card for the deposit. We require $100 per person to hold reservations. This is completely refundable upon 60 days notice of cancellation.
Our rates will be unchanged for 2015.
American guests should realize substantial savings this year due to the favourable exchange rate on U.S. currency. It is currently trading at more than 10 cents higher than the Canadian loonie. Our rates are in Canadian so when you pay with a U.S. credit card you will actually be charged 10 per cent less. If you send us a check, it will be worth 10 per cent more, i.e. a $100 deposit becomes $110 Canadian if the exchange rate is 10 per cent.
As in the past, you can also send us your HST rebate check that you got from last year's trip as part of your deposit. Just make sure you sign the back. Many of our guests do this because their banks charge them an outrageous fee to cash the Canadian government check.
One more thing, exchange rates change daily and experience has shown there is no accurate way of predicting the future. A lot of our guests will likely pay for next summer's trip this winter while they know for sure they will get a great exchange rate. You are welcome to do that. If for some reason you need to cancel, we will refund the entire amount unless the cancellation comes less than 60 days of the trip in which we will refund everything but the $100 deposit fee.
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Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures Dan and Brenda. By the way, congratulations to Brenda for being elected president!!
I am still awaiting my rebate check. As soon as I receive it I will make my deposit for opening week as usual. Thanks for the info.
Dave M.

Dan Baughman said...

Thanks, Dave.
Just a reminder to sign the back of the HST rebate check before mailing it. Otherwise we can't deposit it. We're getting some rebate check with deposits already so yours is probably not far away.