Episode 1 Recap: Where In the World is Ogopogo?

By Sheri Block

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Nine teams from across the country arrived at the starting line in Niagara Falls, Ont., by high speed jet boats ready to run “The Amazing Race Canada.”
 
Spoilers Ahead!
 
Host Jon Montgomery told them they were about to embark on a physically grueling 23,000 km adventure from coast to coast. He said the “Race” will be 10 legs long and the winners of the first leg will receive two Express Passes – one for them to use by the seventh leg and one they may give to another team of their choice by the third leg. The pass allows teams to skip any challenge they don’t want to complete.  
 
“Alright everybody, Canada is waiting for you. Good luck, race safe … GO!” said Montgomery.
 
After receiving their first clue, teams drove themselves to the Niagara Butterfly Conservatory, where they had to search the conservatory for one of nine terrariums containing some of nature’s “prettiest and poisonous” creatures. Each terrarium contained two clues (one for each team member) filled with flight vouchers for their next destination. Teams who were willing to get close to a more dangerous creature would be rewarded with an earlier flight.
 
Best friends Jet and Dave were the first to arrive and gathered their clues from a terrarium of butterflies, not realizing until after they should’ve kept looking for a more vicious creature.  
 
Twin sisters Treena and Tennille mistakenly only grabbed one of their clues, as did father and son Tim Sr. and Tim Jr. Teams then drove themselves to Pearson International Airport and boarded a flight to Kelowna, B.C. Dating couple Kristen and Darren, married doctors Holly and Brett, married fitness icons Hal and Joanne, and sisters Vanessa and Celina boarded the first flight, while best friends Jamie and Pierre, Treena and Tennille, Tim Sr. and Tim Jr., brothers Jody and Cory and Jet and Dave took the second flight 90 minutes later. 
 
Teams finally got a chance to meet and chat with each other at the airport, where Dave told Hal and Joanne he knew who they were and that his cousin had dressed up as Hal for Halloween for many years, something the fitness icons found funny. 
 
Searching for Blue Bear 
 
After arriving in Kelowna, teams had to search for a yellow truck next to the Blue Bear sculpture across from City Hall. 
 
Kristen and Darren got to the clue first, while Vanessa and Celina got lost. 
 
Arriving on the second flight and currently in last place, Jody and Cory ran into further trouble when they encountered a locked door at the airport and set off a security alarm trying to open it.  “We just got screwed big time,” said Cory.
 
Jody and Cory eventually found someone to let them out and arrived at the Blue Bear last, after Vanessa and Celina who finally found their way. 
 
Teams then had to sign up for a spot at Lakefront Water Sports to take a personal watercraft the next morning beginning at 8 a.m. Staying together at the Kelowna Yacht Club, the first four teams – Brett and Holly, Kristen and Darren, Vanessa and Celina and Hal and Joanne – formed an alliance and said whoever arrived at the mat first would give the second Express Pass to the team in that group that finished second. 
 
Treena and Tennille, who got lost looking for Lakefront Water Sports, arrived at the sign-up sheet last and got the last spot. 

Check out photos from the episode here
 
Deep Diving and Walking the Plank 
 
Teams had to travel by jet ski across Lake Okanagan where they would ”Dive for Ogopogo” by entering a deep water dive cage, and searching for a statue of the mythical creature underwater where they would find their next clue. 
 
Brett was the first to complete the challenge and then he and Holly set off by car to Myra-Bellevue Provincial Park where they had to search for an abandoned trestle bridge and their next clue. 
 
Darren, Hal and Dave completed the challenge without difficulty, while Tim Jr. and Vanessa were lowered down in the cage together. While Vanessa began panicking, Tim Jr. pushed past her and finished the challenge. 
 
At the trestle bridge, the team member who didn’t dive for Ogopogo had to complete a Roadblock called “Walk the Plank,” which involved jumping over the edge of the Bellevue Trestle into the canyon below. 
 
Kristen was first to attempt the challenge and struggled with her fear of heights: “Of all the things I’m afraid of, this is the worst,” she said.  
 
She did jump off the plank, followed by Holly, and teams were instructed to travel to Quails’ Gate Winery, the site of the next Pit Stop. 

Read more on Canada’s Niagara and Okanagan wine regions at TheLoop.ca
 
Meanwhile, Jamie and Pierre struggled to find Ogopogo, as Jody, without his prosthetic legs, and Cory, set off on the jet ski. 
 
Cory completed the Ogopogo challenge, while Treena and Tennille struggled to find it. 
 
Back at the plank, Jet completed the task while Joanne prepared to jump off by saying her and Hal’s trademark Bodybreak phrase: “Until next time: Keep fit and have fun.” 
 
Tim Jr. worried about his dad, who has Parkinson’s Disease, walking the plank, but when he completed the challenge with no difficulties, Tim Jr. remarked, “Man, this guy’s my hero right here. I’m really proud of him.” 
 
Celina, who is afraid of heights, walked the plank in tears as her sister cheered her on below. 
 
Jody also struggled walking the plank with his prosthetic legs as he couldn’t crouch down but he was able to stable himself and get the clue. 
 
The last two teams finally arrived at Ogopogo, and Jamie and Tennille completed their deepwater dive. 
 
Racing to the Pit Stop 
 
Kristen and Darren arrived at the Pit Stop first, where they received both Express Passes and the news they had won two round trip tickets to Sydney, Australia. 
 
Holly and Brett arrived at the mat next, followed by Hal and Joanne and Jet and Dave. 
 
At the plank, Treena overcame her fear of heights to complete the challenge, and as she opened the next clue she exclaimed, “I think it’s a winery. For the love of God, please.”
 
Pierre also finished the challenge, as Tim Sr. and Tim Jr. arrived at the mat, only to find they had incurred a 30-minute time penalty for not taking both clues at the Niagara Butterfly Conservatory.
 
Vanessa and Celina arrived at the mat next in sixth place, but due to the father and son’s time penalty, they checked in fifth. 
 
Tim Sr. and Tim Jr. checked in sixth once their time penalty was complete, and Treena and Tennille and Jamie and Pierre raced to the mat.
 
Treena and Tennille arrived first but since the sisters also did not grab both of their clues at the conservatory, they incurred a 30-minute time penalty, securing their elimination. 
 
“The feeling right now is just pure pain and disappointment but without a doubt I’m proud to be sitting here beside my sister and I’m without a doubt proud to have participated in ‘The Amazing Race Canada,’” said Tennille. 
 
“There is literally no one on this planet that I could’ve, would’ve, or should’ve run this ‘Race’ with,” added Treena. 
 
Order of Finish: 
1. Kristen and Darren
2. Holly and Brett
3. Hal and Joanne
4. Jet and Dave
5. Vanessa and Celina
6. Tim Sr. and Tim Jr.
7. Jody and Cory 
8. Jamie and Pierre
9. Treena and Tennille
 

Special Thanks for This Episode:

Little Ray's Reptile Zoo
Ontario Tourism
(Marketing Partnership Corporation)
 
Over the Rainbow
 
Roots Canada
 
Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours
 
Fujinon Optical Lenses
 
Delta Grand Okanagan Resort
Destination British Columbia
 
Diving Dynamics
 
Kelowna Yacht Club
 
Lakefront Sports Centre
 
Monashee Adventure Tours
 
Quail's Gate Winery
 
Tourism Kelowna

Amazing Race Canada