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Squamish in the 2022 Mazda CX-9

This weekend we thought to do a little day trip to Squamish, just to get out into nature a little. Where we found the perfect travel companion in the Mazda CX-9.

As taken from their website:
“Luxurious yet functional, the 2022 CX-9 offers a sophisticated driving experience. Command your drive with powerful acceleration backed by the ample torque of its groundbreaking Dynamic Pressure Turbo engine. Enjoy an enhanced level of driver-centric infotainment and connectivity with Mazda Connected Services, and navigate the world in the utmost comfort with available second-row Captain’s chairs.”

“The 2022 Mazda CX-9 their our i-Activ all-wheel-drive system, standard on all models. Its inventive engineering helps forecast the possible loss of traction by actively monitoring everything, from outside temperature and windshield wiper usage, to steering and braking patterns. For a responsive and confident drive, no matter the conditions”.

And I can confirm, our 2022 CX-9 for the week made our drive easy and stress-free. It only comes with sport mode, but the SUV’s intuitive nature meant we need not fiddle with knobs, but instead enjoy the ride and take in the surroundings we were going out of our way to experience.

The same intuition is also great for newer drivers. As I have never had another vehicle encourage me to take a break after an extended period behind the wheel. Or instruct me to get a better grip on my wheel when I was wobbling. It felt like an Apple Watch and a driving instructor rolled in to one.

The handling was smooth and our seats comfortable with plenty of lumbar support. This was an enjoyable drive as we wound up the Sea to Sky Highway with sun roof open, taking a 1 hour drive to our destination.

Our Squamish adventure began with quick lunch at a food truck. With no benches or tables near by, the CX-9’s fold down third row of seats and its spacious cargo hold easily converted to the perfect tail gate perch for our tacos and churros.

Then it was off to the scenic Squamish spit. Now half of what it once was, the city has removed the road and you are no longer able to access the very end where wind surfing competitions use to be held.

However the drive is still an interesting one with flowing water, and panoramic views of the estuary and the variety of bird and plant life that call it home.

We would take a quick hike that yielded in a happen chance bounty of fresh oyster mushrooms, growing on a tree along with moss. This we would later make into a homemade chunky mushroom soup.

When mid day struck we felt fatigue, so took a nap in the Mazda CX-9. With built in sun shades, we were easily able to darken our environment and sprawl across the back seat for a flat back nap. Worth noting is the roomy cockpit and wide seats therein also make quick car naps easy and inviting.

The rest of our day was spent visiting local restaurants, picking up some local craft beer, and stopping by to catch up with our friends in Squamish. Our Mazda getting us there safe and sound, and back home in no time when it was all done.

But for additional suggestions on things to do when you are in Squamish, I have solicited the help/advise of local private Chef Kristian Leidig, better known for his pop up dinners in Squamish and Vancouver, for recommendations. (https://www.kristianthechef.com/)

Here are some of the things that came to his mind, as well as snip-its of his candid notes, in which I got permission to post and publish here.

Sea to sky gondola:
You can ride up or hike up. The hike isn’t the easiest and it takes about 3-4 hours. Once at the top there are some great food and drink options. Chef Kristian recommends the burgers, to be enjoyed with the spectacular patio view.

Not many people think about it, but there’s a fun course in Squamish, as well as Furry Creek which is known to be is quiet challenging.

When frisbee meets golf. Squamish has a disc golf course at Legacy Park, where the entire course is within the forest.

Farmers market on Saturdays:
Squamish’s farmer’s market is still steadily growing, but makes for a great way to discover local vendors.

Brunch at Fergies:
This is already a fairly well know hot spot. Fergies is popular for their unique outdoor setting, where they are situated really close to the river. On weekends there will be about a 1-1.5 hour wait for tables. However, if you put your name on the list and enjoy warmer weather by the river until it is your turn, the wait is not bad. They are definitely a hub during summer.

Eagle watching at Brackendale:
Ironically, Canada has more bald eagles that the US, who have claimed them has their national bird. The shallow running river with fish make this spot popular amongst avian hunters such as falcons, hawks, and eagles.

Mountain biking & hiking:
Squamish has an intricate trail network. Biking trails are often well marked and easy to find, especially with apps. Hiking trails can be a bit more difficult to source so it is best to consult those that already know about them. Many trails like the Chief or 4 Lakes are in popular areas and easy to find, but lesser known trails won’t be as easy to come across.

You can see people standing in the rivers fishing all year round, and I am one of them.

River rafting:
There is at least one company that does rafting (and I believe kayaking if you’re experienced already). They can be seen loading groups on to the river frequently, so complete the run daily if there is a big enough draw.

And if you are looking for a one of a kind dinner that best showcases the produce and products of Squamish, in a setting that only locals are able to take advantage of; look to Chef Kristian and one of his upcoming pop ups. His brand and cuisine has you feeling like part of the family, as he literally welcomes you into his home. He has 2 acres situated by the forest with river access. And is planning to host a least 3 pop up dinner there this summer.

I have gotten the insider scoop that the themes of said dinners will most likely be a Meat n’ Greet 2.0, a Bavarian/German themed dinner, and one showcasing Vietnamese/Thai cuisine. For updates and to make sure you get your tickets, follow Chef Kristian at @kristianthechef on IG, and bookmark his website at https://www.kristianthechef.com/

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