Enchanted Forest

As we woke up on the 26th of September in Kamloops, we were greeted to a pretty perfect day. Unfortunately that wouldn’t stay that way for long.

To start our day we had complimentary breakfast in the hotel. When I was booking the hotel the breakfast menu looked good, and after the lack lustre breakfasts at the Cascadia, we were hoping for something better. Unfortunately it was much worse! The scrambled eggs weren’t very nice, but the flat breakfast sausage was bloody awful. It looked like grey flat brains, and actually looked the same going in as it did when Kim spat it out. The breakfast didn’t get us off to a good start. We should have gone to McDonalds for breakfast.

After the awful breakfast and checking out, we headed for Walmart. We needed some cooking supplies for our next accommodation in Golden, along with some other things. Kim was getting supplies and looking around in Walmart, while I was thinking about getting back on the road. We stopped at the pharmacy to get some Clarityne, but they didn’t have that, they had Claritine. It is the same thing, just the North American version.

We got our supplies and I thought we would be going, but Kim was still looking around. She did find some good things in that time, but my mind was set on driving towards Golden. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and looking back now, I wish I had more patience. It was our honeymoon and if Kim wanted to spend time there in Walmart, then that is what we should have done. I got fixated on the itinerary and lost sight of the experience of being on the other side of the world. Unfortunately I didn’t have that mindset and got into a mood because we weren’t moving.

My bad mood at Walmart rubbed off onto Kim, and she got into a mood because of it. My moods might be off putting, Kim’s are downright scary. We had a long drive ahead of us and Kim didn’t speak to me for most of it. This wasn’t going to be a good day.

It was very quiet in the car as Kim wasn’t saying anything to me. I knew I had been an asshole, and apologised to Kim, but she wasn’t talking to me and that was that. We drove along in silence and I was feeling worse and worse about my attitude at Walmart. We got about an hour and a half down the road and stopped at DeMille’s Farm Market in Salmon Arm. It was a rustic looking set of buildings which sold farm produce. Kim led the way shopping and I tried to stay out of the way. Kim didn’t really speak to me or make eye contact. We paid for our goods and got going towards Golden. I wish I had taken some photos of the place, but I wasn’t looking to antagonise the situation anymore than I already had.

Just under an hour further down the road we decided to stop at a place called the Enchanted Forest. We had been seeing signs for it for a while, which looked good, and we could do with a rest. Kim seemed to be talking to me a little more here, but it was still strained.

According to The Enchanted Forest website it is ‘a must see BC attraction’. It is situated in one of the old growth forests of Canada’s Monashee Mountains. When you look on Google maps it is near a place called Taft.

An explanation of The Enchanted Forest from their website.

A Dream Come True

Doris Needham was an artist in Revelstoke during the 1950’s. She made unusual fairy tale figurines from cement by shaping her creations by hand, without the use of molds or forms.

Desiring to find the perfect setting for her handiwork, she searched for two years and finally chose this unique but isolated location between Revelstoke and Sicamous, BC. This endeavour turned into a retirement project which Doris and her husband Ernest named their “Enchanted Forest”.

The Needham’s were very isolated in those early years. However, their love of nature and trust in God kept them at their chosen work. During the next 10 years, they developed eight of their forest’s 40 acres, and purchased the property originally leased from the Crown.

The trails were cleared by hand, their only tools being shovels, picks and a crosscut saw. With a labour of love Ernest built the “Candy Cane” house in which they lived and constructed the rock walls along the property. Utilizing the waterfall across the highway, a gravity water system was installed, this is still in use today.

With the opening of Rogers Pass, the traffic pattern changed from a few automobiles a day to thousands and travellers began stopping, out of curiosity, to view the quaint sights of The Enchanted Forest.

The place looked a little dodgy from the exterior but we needed to stretch our legs and perhaps have some fun. We certainly needed something to break the tension, as Kim still wasn’t talking, which meant I was staying quiet as well so as not to incur the wrath of Kimmie. The gift shop looked dark and over stocked to the point that there wasn’t much room to move around. We got our tickets and headed into the park.

We started by checking out the castle at the front of the park and the dungeon inside. It was your typical mechanical prisoner that moved when you got close to the door, nothing special. We didn’t stay there long and we were soon heading up the dirt paths of the Enchanted Forest. I quickly noticed that Kim wasn’t waiting for me so I had to hurry to catch her after taking photos of the quaint statues. The statues were a little disturbing for the most part. There were certainly some good-looking statues in the Enchanted Forest, but some were rather odd. Some of the standouts were the evil Snow White and the extremely evil looking Pooh Bear that looked to be holding his friends hostage. There was a rocking horse contraption set up on a tree that had either fallen or had been chopped down. It consisted of a mop for the mane and that is it. It really highlighted how dodgy the attraction was. On the other hand there was a really good three-story tree house that Kim went up. That was possibly the best thing in the Enchanted Forest.

They had all sorts of fairy-tale displays in the Enchanted Forest that were big enough for children to get into and some adults. Kim was good enough to go into most displays so I could get photos. There was one display for the three little pigs that Kim went into and my first photo wasn’t good enough. I said I needed to take another and I got the dirtiest look from her, which she doesn’t remember doing. We may have been having some fun in the Enchanted Forest with its quaint statues, but the tension was still there.

Near the end of the park there were long drop toilets in gingerbread buildings. They certainly made the place look interesting and I think it would be great fun for kids, but it looked a little too suspect for us. There was a small duck pond near the long drops and Kim got to feed them and the fish. As we left there was a large Easter bunny statue so I sat on its knee. The photo makes it look rather disturbing.

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