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At Echo Valley Ranch and Spa, dining is all-inclusive with breakfast, lunch and dinner served family-style in Dove Lodge. Meals are at set times with breakfast and lunch set up as a buffet on the counter of the open kitchen. Dinner is served on platters where guests help themselves at the large communal tables at which they are seated.
Healthy ingredients are used (farm-to-table) with most of the vegetables, herbs, beef, pork, chicken, turkey and other foods organically-grown and raised at the ranch.
Breakfast items varied each morning of our visit and included: pastries, muffins and breads; cereals and granola; yogurt and fresh fruit; fruit juices; pancakes and French toast; eggs prepared a couple of ways (scrambled/fried); grilled tomatoes; grilled mushrooms; potatoes; pork and beef sausage; bacon.
Lunch offered an abundance of hot and cold items that varied each day: soups; salads; fresh vegetables; summer sausage; sandwiches; pasta salad; curry with rice; taco fixings; smoked salmon; cheese and crackers; dessert.
Dinners were a delicious 3-course affair starting with a salad (Caprese and Greek salads were served on the two nights we dined in Dove Lodge), followed by a main course (variety of assorted grilled vegetables, roasted potatoes, chicken and pork), and completed with delicious desserts.
On one of the evenings during our stay we experienced a bountiful Western BBQ dinner (served on Tuesday and Friday nights during the summer) at the outdoor pavilion on the ranch. Plentiful options included steak, shrimp, lamb, salmon, baked potatoes, salads, assorted grilled vegetables, corn on the cob, and homemade pie. Guests then spent the rest of the evening enjoying making s’mores while sitting around the campfire until the sun set.
Thai Night with Thai Dinner and entertainment by the staff is only on Thursdays, and as we are huge Thai food fans we were disappointed to miss it (we left Thursday morning).
We loved the coffee/tea/hot chocolate station with cookies and muffins available all day long in the Dove Lodge. A water cooler was available in the Lookout Lodge for guests staying there to enjoy – even though the tap water comes from a spring and is perfectly delicious to drink.
Upon checking out after breakfast on our last morning, we were provided with a lovely boxed lunch for the journey. This was very much appreciated as we had a remote 5-hour drive to our next adventure and weren’t passing through any towns.
Each day we started with an early morning 60-minute Thai Yoga session in the Baan Thai building before going to breakfast. This was a great way to stretch out and get ourselves ready for a day full of activities.
It was also easy to grab a map and head off for a nearby nature trail hike on our own – lots of options from which to choose.
A few times we picked out a mountain bike (various sizes of mountain bikes and helmets are available anytime for guests to use) and took a spin around the ranch and on the airstrip.
Jada joined a couple of the other kids at the ranch for a roping lesson by the head wrangler and quickly learned the tricks of lassoing.
After checking in on our first afternoon, Jada had a fly fishing lesson and then we all spent time practicing our skills at the well-stocked trout pond near the Lookout Lodge. For a modest fee lessons can be booked for those that want to try the sport, and then the use of rods is available complimentary.
We spent an hour practicing archery on our last morning. This took place in one of the hay barns with the instruction and under the guidance of the activities manager. It is a fun multi-generational sport to try together in a safe environment.
– Fly fishing excursions
– Hiking – guided tours to climb Mount Bowman or other less strenuous areas
– Target shooting
– Scenic flights with Norm Dove
– 4×4 excursions – wildlife viewing/photography, gold panning, Native dip net fishing,
Three nights at Echo Valley Ranch was perfect for our posse to experience many of the available activities. The ambiance was relaxed and laid back. The accommodations were upscale and comfortable. The food was delicious and plentiful. The outdoor activities were varied and adventurous. The spa was peaceful and relaxing. The staff was warm and friendly. The setting was spectacular and serene. We departed feeling perfectly thrilled with our multi-generational, family retreat at this luxury adventure ranch in one of British Columbia’s most scenic regions. Now Jada wants to know when we can go back again… but next time she wants to stay twice as long! That sounds like a great idea to us.
Tip: With the current favorable exchange rate between the American and Canadian dollars, Echo Valley Ranch is even more of a great deal for US residents. (Approximate Exchange Rate: US$1 = CDN$1.30 – check current rates at xe.com)
Echo Valley Ranch is located about 450 km/280 miles ( 5.5 to 6-hour drive) north of Vancouver via the Fraser Canyon. Follow Hwy 1 to Cache Creek (fill your gas tank here) and then continue north on BC-97 N. At Clinton it’s time to leave the main highway and take the Kelly Lake Road/Pavilion – Clinton Road for 16 km/10 miles. The last 35 kms/21 miles of the journey is on Jesmond Road – a dirt road with pot holes that can take 45 minutes to an hour to drive (a rainy day makes for a very muddy and slippery road that is slow to drive). The nearest sizeable airport is in Kamloops (YKA), and the ranch is about a 90-minute drive from there.
Note: WAVEJourney were guests at Echo Valley Ranch in August 2016.