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Outer Island Expeditions' fleet of kayaks and boats safely cruises at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour through frothy crests ebbing amid the striking sights and wildlife of the San Juan islands. Venturing as far as 50 miles into Canadian waters, whale-watching excursions foster personal rapport between patrons and boat-side orcas, gray whales, or humpback whales trying to learn human etiquette for future espionage missions. Tours of Stuart Island's Turn Point lighthouse begin aboard a 22-foot Kodiak skiff, which buoys patrons through 16 miles of waters inhabited by sea lions and porpoises before they disembark and hike to the lighthouse's historical museum. Fishing charters set sail in search of ocean creatures and potable salt water from all of Outer Island Expeditions' four launch points: Smuggler's Villa Resort, Semiahmoo Resort, Lopez Island, and The Willows on Lummi Island.
The veteran athletes at Peregrine Expeditions nurture their already intimate relationships with Mother Nature during skiing and climbing excursions into the icy peaks of Mount Baker or jagged rock faces of Mount Erie. Backcountry skiing courses hone snow-skimming techniques, and intense skiing tours toe the border between the United States and Canada on two-day treks that embark each morning from a hut at base camp. Adrenaline junkies foray into Forbidden Peak for two or three days, conquering the ins and outs of navigating ice, performing mountaintop rescues, and backpacking in challenging conditions. Kid-specific expeditions tone tiny muscles and teach bird calls used to ask eagles the way to the nearest latrine as youngsters grouped by age engage in courses that span one to five days.
Based at Kamloops and Boundary Bay Airport, Canadian Flight Centre has used its fleet of small aircraft to train more than 3,000 professional and recreational pilots since its inception in 1979. After a thorough ground-school education, potential commercial and private fliers hop into planes for flight training. Instructors utilize the region's unique proximity to coastal mountains and the Pacific Ocean to teach specific mountain checkout or water-related flying and instrument skills. They outfit their instructional aircraft with all the controls, instrumentation, and capabilities necessary to imbue industry-standard proficiency.
In 1993, Ms. Bonny Brown formed Grapefully Yours to bring the secrets of wine- and beer-making to the masses. Today, her dream is housed inside Grape Plus Wine Cellar, which is owned by Betsy Rong. Her staff walks customers through selecting and fermenting their chosen brew—a simple process that can treat palates to dozens of red, white, and fruit mist wines, which fuse juicy flavours such as banana and pineapple. An air conditioner's gentle breeze keeps mixtures cool on their journey from grape to wine before bottle-filling and corking machines ready potables to pour into wineglasses or empty ice-cube trays. Additionally, the staff can emblazon bottles with custom labels or dispense beer kits that let customers create bubbly lagers and ales.
Inside Paddlewheeler Riverboat Cruises' signature vessel, the MV Native, captains transport passengers 100 years back in time when scores of paddle wheelers churned through the rivers of British Columbia. Before the authentic-style vessel casts off into the Frasier River, the crew tailors each voyage to a different theme that treat passengers to off land DJ dance parties, views of local wildlife, and journeys to historic locales such as Fort Langley. Their boat also plays host to special occasions including weddings and private parties. Towering mountain ranges act as a backdrop for each tour, and the ship's white and red exterior greets eyes with a classic design that echoes the Canadian flag flown at its bow and the giant candy cane used to anchor its stern.