Last week I was invited on a boat cruise, literally in my own neighbourhood from the nice folks at Pitt Lake Natural Wilderness Cruises.
Living in Port Coquitlam, just minutes from the Pitt River, I've spent a fair bit of time along its banks with its kilometres of walking and biking trails - but have never been on the river itself.
Boarding the catamaran Beta Star at the Pitt Meadows Airport floatplane dock on a completely miserable, rainy day didn't deter the group, thanks to the covered canopy on the boat. We were all optimistic that the forecast of the rain letting up in the afternoon would happen (it did, for a little bit, at least).
We proceeded to loop back around the Fraser River and go along the Pitt River, which is an active waterway with plenty of logging and boating happening all over the place.
I've never actually seen someone running on logs on the river before, just in those demonstrations on Grouse Mountain.
There is no shortage of wildlife to see on the cruise- a good zoom lens with image stablization is highly recommended (I was using a 55-300 mm lens for most of my photos).
I'm kind of glad it wasn't a pristine sunny day when we went out on the cruise, as it wouldn't have been possible to capture some of the stunning beauty along the shore.
On our way back to Pitt Meadows, we managed to get the West Coast Express to pose for a photo while we waited for it to pass by so that the bridge could swing open to allow us through. It was a lot of fun, despite the rain, to cruise along the river for the day. With full food, bar, and washroom facilities onboard, I could get used to being on a boat. I've been invited to come back on a more cooperative weather day which I plan to do this summer. They also offer paddlewheel cruises to Fort Langley which sounds pretty cool too.
PITT LAKE NATURAL WILDERNESS CRUISE
. The Pitt Lake Wilderness Cruise is operated by Vancouver Paddlerwheeler Riverboat Cruises.
. The cruise leaves from Pitt Meadows Airport on Thursdays and leaves from New Westminster on Thursdays and Saturdays.
. The cruise runs from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and a luncheon buffet will be served.
. Adults $94.95, seniors (60+) $89.95, children (six to 12) $69.95, Children under five free.
. For more information call 604-525-4465 or visit www.vancouverpaddlewheeler.com.
John Biehler is a B.C.-based photographer and blogger who participated in last week's tour up the Pitt Lake.