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Mobile sauna service expands to South Okanagan

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A mobile sauna company from the Kootenays is hoping customers will warm up to their service in the South Okanagan.

Backwoods Sauna delivers its steamy sauna on wheels to any location it can reach – from civic addresses to logging road campsites. Co-owner Sophie Beedell said the unit can comfortably seat four to six people and is normally rented from periods between two hours and an entire weekend.

The new mobile sauna is based in Kaleden and will travel up to 50 kilometres before charging extra for mileage. The saunas are heated by a wood fired stove and powered by solar so they operate completely off the grid.

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The units are built by Beedell’s husband who is a carpenter, along with her father-in-law who is a master carpenter. She said the wood comes from Selkirk cedar trees in the Interior mountains which gives it that classic sauna smell. B&L Machine Shop Ltd. in Penticton helped with the manufacturing.

READ MORE: In Sweden, naked policeman arrests fugitive in sauna

Many Canadians only experience a sauna in a gym setting, Beedell said. But saunas are a big part of Finnish history and culture, and they’re becoming more popular in the Eastern United States, so the team at Backwoods feels confidents they’ll also be appreciated in the mountains of British Columbia.

Having launched in early 2020, Backwoods Sauna had to adapt to the era of COVID restrictions. The team initially thought the saunas planned on catering to more public events but has mostly been used for private bookings.

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“We had to take a different business route,” she said.

Beedell said the operators in Kaleden are hoping to eventually offer public rentals at Skaha Beach in Penticton on select days. Wherever a trailer can be towed the sauna can go.

Find out how to book one on their website here

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