Skiing and Wine Country

Last weekend we had the pleasure of our friend Claudio visiting, from Gibbston Valley wines. He was here in Vancouver for a wine tasting show, so we twisted his rubber arm to come a few days early and go skiing with us at Whistler. The mountain still has a lot of snow, over 3 metres base, but with the weather warming up people are more interested in biking and golf, rather than skiing, so they have closed Whistler Mtn, but luckily Blackcomb is still open.

We hiked from the top of the Seventh Heaven chair up and over into the Blackcomb Glacier.

Then had a wonderful ski down.

Mark obviously looked like the ski instructor that he is, I on the other hand took it slow, but had a lot of fun.

Mark and I just got back this weekend from 4 days in the Okanagan Valley, 4 hours drive East of Vancouver, for the Spring Wine Festival. Mission Hill Family Estate was involved in the Festival, so I went a day early to have some time in our vineyards, then had a day in the trade with our local Sales Manager, and helped pour wine at two events. Mark and I did get to go to some nice places for Breakfast and Dinner, the Manteo Bay Resort and Eldorado Hotel, and while we were there we went to Ingo’s surprise 50th Birthday party.

Ingo is our wine educator, lives near the winery, and is a great resource for our team.

His Birthday cake was made with an icing sugar figurine, and very Ingo!

One of our vineyards, on the US Border. The apple trees on the left are in the USA. The vineyards are in a desert, they only get 300mm rain per year. It also has warm summers, long hot days, and lots of lakes for irrigation. The main grape varities are Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris.

The soils are very sandy, with over 130ft of straight sand and silt, it is the ultimate in free draining soils!

Establishing some new vines, they use milk cartons to protect the young vine, and sprinklers to establish ground cover between the rows.

Only two weeks now until Mum and Dad visit, we are very excited!

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