Points about Westside Road
The trail between Fintry and Nahun was the last remnant of the Hudson Bay Trail. It was used to travel between the two communities after the Shorts Point Post Office was closed. A rough and narrow wagon road was used to join Westbank to Nahun around 1908. Eight years later, the road to Ewing's Landing was completed using horse teams, which made Vernon accessible without crossing the lake by ferry. During the depression, scores of able-bodied men from the relief camp in Wilson Landing worked to improve the narrow and generally unsafe portion of Westside Road where you will now find Traders Cove.
The Boats: Sternwheelers Serving on Northern Okanagan Lake (The White Queens)
Aberdeen - 1892 to 1913: 44.5m long and burned 10 cord of wood per trip. Coal burner after 1902
Fairview - 1894, burned in 1897: 17m long, wood burner
Okanagan - 1907, dismantled late 1930s: 59m long, coal burner
Kaleden - 1910, dismantled in 1920: 28.6m long, coal burner
Sicamous - 1914, modified in 1935: 61.1m long, coal burner, last passenger trip summer of 1936
Compared to other same size boats of the time, these boats had low construction and maintenance costs. They were highly adaptable to pioneer conditions and built to allow the bow to run ashore without damage. To call a boat, you simply signalled from shore. The boats were equipped with searchlights to scan for the wharf in the dark. The boats brought clothes, food items, fruit and vegetables, tools, reading material, horses and cattle, large steam boilers, cow hides, and gold bricks to people living on the shore. They also transported visitors and men going off to and returning from war.
Westside Road is also called the ‘Tail of the Ogopogo’. Aptly named for its curves and elevation changes, this road is often compared to the ‘Tail of the Dragon’ in the USA’s Appalachians. It is sought out by motorcycle enthusiasts for its 330 curves that often hug the west side of Okanagan Lake traveling north of Kelowna. Learn more about the Tail of the Ogopogo here.