Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Okanagan Weekend: July 2009

It has taken me a few days to organize my videos from my weekend in Kelowna and it gives me a smile when I watch them. Little did I know at the time that the wild fires in Westbank (West Kelowna) would conspire to keep me from returning home on Sunday by diverting me northward through Vernon and Kamloops . . . a detour of 3-4 hours. I had previously arranged to meet a friend which created another delay of nearly 4 hours created by our long 2 hour lunch in Spences Bridge. In the end I spent 12 hours in the saddle of my SV650. I left Kelowna just after 9am and arrived home in Vancouver just after 9pm. In contrast on Friday when I left Vancouver from work around 2pm I arrived in Kelowna around 6:30pm, a travel time of only 4-1/2 hours taking the fast route over the Coquihalla Highway (known locally as the Coca-Cola Highway), or COKE for short.

For those accountants out there (yes, cpa3485, I mean you), here are the stats:

total distance: 1,185 kms
Litres consumed: 52.5 ltrs
total cost: Cdn$53.30

MPG, us gallon 53.432 miles per US gallon
MPG, cdn gallon 64.090 miles per Cdn gallon

This is for my SV650n K4. With an itchy throttle hand, spirited riding

in contrast, last year I took my Kymco Xciting 500Ri and obtained these figures:

total distance: 1,124 kms
Litres consumed: 47.05 ltrs
total cost: Cdn$68.16 (fuel was higher last year)

MPG, us gallon 56.535 miles per US gallon
MPG, Cdn gallon 67.812 miles per Cdn gallon

Just thought that you would be interested in the difference in fuel consumption

The X500Ri is able to travel the speed limits without any difficulties and is more comfortable and relaxed. The SV650 is able to travel at much faster speeds and of course, I took advantage every chance I could

As I was trying to minimize my picture stopping time due to the detour, I decided that I would take mainly video. It is also safer to use due to its fixed position using Ram-mounts attached to the handlebars. Usually when I take still photos one handed I don't usually wear a left glove and I normally have to hold the camera upside down to access all the controls.

Another thing, the camera is not mounted behind the windscreen. It is exposed to the full force of the wind and I did not realize that some debris got affixed to the lens filter which shows up as a large spot on the left top of most of my video(s). I will be more careful in the future to ensure that the lens is clean.

I stitched 3 segments together. The first section is the full approach to the new William R Bennett floating bridge which connects Westbank (now known as West Kelowna) with Kelowna and was officially opened on 25 May 2008. This is for Bradley (Troubador on a Triumph)

the 2nd segment is a short clip riding on Hwy 8 just south of Spences Bridge, BC

There are 7 tunnels in the Fraser Canyon:



"The Fraser Canyon Highway Tunnels were constructed in the late 1950s to about the mid 1960's as part of the Trans-Canada Highway project. There are seven tunnels in total, the shortest being about 57 metres (190 ft); the longest, however, is about 610 metres (2,000 ft) and is one of North America's longest. They are situated between Yale and Boston Bar.

In order from south to north, they are: Yale, Saddle Rock, Sailor Bar, Alexandra, Hell's Gate, Ferrabee and China Bar. The Hell's Gate tunnel is the only tunnel that does not have lights, while the China Bar tunnel is the only tunnel that requires ventilation.

A recent project at the Ferrabee Tunnel has been to install warning lights that are activated by cyclists before they enter the tunnel. This was required because the tunnel is curved. It is expected that the China Bar and Alexandra tunnels will get the same warning lights as they too are curved."

I have videos of all 7 tunnels, but I have only included one in the 3rd video segment. Again, sorry for the debris on the lens. Looks like I will have to make another trip to reshoot the video.


  1. I have to say your edting and captions are nicely done and the video itself looks steady and clear on the whole. I prefer still pictures and commentary. I have discovered I want an iphone though so I am not a complete luddite/curmudgeon/spoilsport.
    riepe says he uses a wii fit. Thats definitely inapppropriate technology.

  2. Great blog and video Bobskoot. It is nice to see some video of the Okanagan. Good job.

  3. I appreciate the fact that you translated the mileage statistics into terms I can understand as me no savvy metric, centigrade or Canadianese very well, LOL.
    I find it maybe a bit interesting that the Suzuki gets about the same mileage as the Kymco with a bigger engine and maybe a little faster driving.
    Fantastic movies!: Way to go!, passing that Cage, and the tunnel portion of the video was very cool.


  4. Mr Conchscooter:

    Video steadiness depends upon road surface as the video cam is mounted on the right handlebar. Because of your recent comment about cc'itis I decided at the last moment to take the SV instead of the Scoot to test it out. I have more than enough power. I do not need a litre engine. Still trying to sort out "needs" vs "wants" in my mind.

    I almost purchased the iPHONE, but ended up with the Samsung Omnia instead. All of my emails go directly to my phone. you are welcome to send me an email anytime. ( you posted yours sometime back but I can't find it. I have the 1st part but not the part after the @ .

    I would have shot more "stills" but then I would have had to stop more.


    That video was for you and Bradley. I just had to do it.

    cpa3485 Jim:

    You are more competent than you would admit. I have found that smart people always claim ignorance.

    The bike is much faster and gets mileage similar to the scoot. For comfort and storage the scoot wins hands down.

    In British Columbia there are lots of tunnels and bridges.

  5. The video looks very neat...thanks for the posting..I'd be on your blog a lot more often if it wasn't so damned hard for it to load on my takes forever...not sure if anyone else is having the same prblem or if it is just my system..I tried it on a different system at work too and the same problem...takes forever to download...not sure why

  6. Dear Bob:

    It was a pleasure chatting with you on the phone last night. As I said, I enjoyed the videos and the way you fit them into your text. I would like to experiment with video myself, if only to capture the number of women who respond to my sign that reads, "Show me your ticks."

    I always enjoy getting the technical low-down from you in person, as it saves a lot of typing.

    Have fun on you other rally-type ride this weekend.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack "reep" Toad