the smell of pine and fresh snow: valhalla, bc

We've spent the last couple weeks picking fruit in Kelowna.

Branch by branch, slowly building a resentment towards apples, pears, grapes, anything else that's in season really. After our first stint with apples, I'd close my eyes and see bushels and bushels all piled up in a bin. Cheeks slightly rosy from long days on the orchard and then saturated from our post-work celebratory beers, even we started to look like nearly ripe apples.


When you get a couple days off, you unplug and head for the mountains.

We slowly trudged through the trees - unsteady breaths, shedding layers, frequent pauses -  it felt like all that apple pie we'd been eating over the past couple weeks weigh heavy in our thighs. (Mom's homemade pies with fresh apples from the orchard, can you really blame us?)



We continued to climb, slowly chipping away at an elevation gain of about 2,500ft over a 3.5km stretch. Unsteady breaths persisted, but as we broke out from the trees and caught a glimpse of Gimli peak, we stepped into our rhythm again.


Feet to the earth. Walk, walk, walk,


As we worked our way towards the peak, I kept getting whiffs of my past; a sweeping aroma that can't quite be pinned to a particular time or place, but it stirs this sense of peaceful nostalgia. It came and went as the wind hastened against my face.

It smelt cold with a soft dusting of pine and fresh snow.


And as we prepared to descend towards the thick of pine below, a light snow started to fall.


Thank you, Valhalla Provincial Park.

Until next time,

Sam ♡

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Samantha Shaw