Penticton's river channel is the place to cool off in South Okanagan | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Penticton's river channel is the place to cool off in South Okanagan

Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Coyote Cruises

If the heat is getting you down and you're looking for a way to cool off, why not a refreshing float down Penticton's famous river channel?

The man-made waterway, also known as the Okanagan River Channel, was first created in the 1950s to control flooding and water flow from the Okanagan Lake to Skaha Lake.

The seven-kilometre river float has since changed into a beloved community staple that draws people from across the valley for an up to three hour river float.

Coyote Cruises, which offers a shuttle service along with inner tubes and other floating devices, says the float can take anywhere from an hour to three hours depending how quickly the water is flowing. It's currently flowing pretty slow, so be prepared for a lazy trip down the channel.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the cruise operation has a long list of COVID-19 procedures for health and safety on its website and included insights into how social distancing will be maintained. Among the things listed, the shuttle bus will only be 2/3 full. Personal inflation services will not be provided and staff will not be helping guests in and out of the channel.

General procedures

  • All staff will be wearing masks, gloves and when required face shields
  • Plexiglas separation installed at all customer contact points
  • COVID-19 safety signage installed at entry and both exit points
  • New online booking software allowing for guests to book in advance
  • Dry bags (5L) and waterproof iPhone/key bags will be available for purchase as lockers will not be available
  • Guest lines will adhere to social distancing
  • Following all health protocols based on public health guidelines


  • Each guest is provided a disposable mask to wear. Masks are mandatory.
  • Guests are required to face forward and keep masks on at all times. Absolutely no standing on the bus or switching seats.
  • All windows on the bus are open for free-flowing air
  • The bus driver will not be on the bus when guests are entering
  • Equipment is sanitized after each use
  • Bus seats are sanitized after each use
  • All guests boarding and exiting will use hand sanitizer
  • Additional buses in service to account for less capacity
  • There will be no garbage disposal provided on the bus (garbage cans are available before entering and at the exit)
  • No payments will be allowed at mid/end to board shuttle. Wristbands must be purchased at the start (215 Riverside Drive)


  • Each tube will be sanitized before use (our cleanliness policy in 2019)
  • Customers will exit the channel and return tubes to designated area
  • Our staff will not be helping guests out of the water to adhere to social distancing
  • We will not be offering personal inflation services

For more information about Coyote Cruises and floating the Penticton river channel go here.

You can also check out their Facebook page here.

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