Moving from an off-grid homestead in 1989, Clearwater was a big city to 5-year-old Kris Olson.
“My mom was a teacher at Dutch Lake Elementary, where I also went to school. I fell in love with Clearwater quickly and met lifelong friends in the first few days.”
After high school, Olson travelled North America and Europe. She attended UVIC which led her to working on Cape Breton Island where she provided oversight for environmental remediation work.
“The sense of home I felt while working in Cape Breton drew me back to Clearwater,” said Olson. “I’ve never fallen out of love with this great community.”
After her return, Olson started baking bread to sell at the local Farmer’s Market. Her baking was so popular, she decided to expand her offerings, leading to Olson opening the Wild Flour Cafe & Bakery last year.
“The local community support has been astounding,” said Olson. “Having grown up here, it’s pretty lovely to provide a meeting space and great food for the community. They appreciate it and I appreciate them.”
Olson is also grateful for the natural amenities living in Clearwater provides, describing it as a hidden gem with incredible access to the outdoors without the bustle of most national parks. When not at the cafe, Olson spends as much time as possible outside with her kids puttering in the garden, biking, swimming in Dutch Lake, cross country skiing or whatever the day might bring.
“It’s a great space for kids and to raise kids,” said Olson. “There’s a lot of room for growth. It’s a blank canvas you can do what you want with – there are endless opportunities.”
“If you’re looking for a small town vibe with all the amenities a national park resort area offers and reasonable real estate prices, moving and living here is a no brainer.”
Olson encourages people to come for a visit and explore. Aside from Wells Gray Park there are endless trails around Dunn Lake or Candle Creek. There are also local stops like Mystic Dreams for all sorts of clothing tastes, sipping a sour on the patio at the Hop “N” Hog, or grabbing some Greek potatoes with fancy ketchup from the Clearwater Stop.