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The Original Social Network
By John Bowden
Ever seen that movie "The Social Network", about the start of Facebook? I wonder if Mark Zuckerberg had any idea just how enormous and widespread his brainchild was going to get.
It makes me think what life would be like if we weren’t tethered to our mobile devices to check the latest status updates on social media.
Although cell phone service is reliable around most of the Kootenay Lake area (unless of course you’re headed deep in to the backcountry), there’s no shortage of refreshing ways to disconnect from technology and connect with fellow travellers face to face. I know, a little scary, right?
Fear not! What follows is a handy little guide to help you meet locals and like-minded explorers in Nelson, Kaslo and further afield.
- Take a ride on the Balfour to Kootenay Bay ferry (it’s the longest free one in the world too). Grab a seat on one of the outdoor benches and strike up a conversation as you savour the fjord-like views.
- Stay at the Dancing Bear Inn. Nelson’s only hostel is the ideal spot to meet other adventurers and will help you save a few bucks to put towards some other experiences.
- Take a dip at Ainsworth Hot Springs. You might be surprised to find out just how far some people have come to soothe themselves in the thermal waters and natural caves. See if you can figure out who’s come the furthest…it might even just be you!
- Head up the road and take a trip with Kaslo Adventure Centre. Whether you want to bike, kayak or SUP, you’re likely to explore the lake and mountains with some newfound friends.
- Saddle up to the bar at a local brewpub. In Nelson, order a taste of the taps at the Savoy Brewery, Backroads Brewing Company, or Torchlight Brewing Co. Don’t miss a stop to the legendary Nelson Brewing Company either. And word is that Kaslo has a new brewpub opening May 2017 - The Angry Hen.
- Grab a freshly roasted coffee at Oso Negro, a destination unto itself. You won’t be alone for long at this popular Kootenay café. People watch from the peaceful garden for a bit, but odds are you’ll soon find yourself chatting with a friendly local or traveller like yourself.
- Stroll through the outdoor markets in Nelson and Kaslo. Connect with passionate local producers and mingle with fellow visitors as you discover why the Kootenays have a reputation for delicious fresh food.
- Feel the adrenaline with a river-rafting trip. Hop onboard one of Lardeau River Rafting’s scenic rides along Class 2 waters, or challenge yourself with up to Class 4 rapids with Nelson Whitewater Rafting Co. Either way you’re bound to share good times and wild rides with other friendly travellers.
This is just a start - there are plenty of ways to unplug and meet travellers like yourself in the Nelson and Kootenay Lake region. Just don’t forget to take a few pictures and videos along the way! Our photo and video contests start April 2017. #findingawesome