Big Horn Sheep near the end of Jasper National Park. There were dozens of the guys on the side of a cliff… more pictures to come!
Via Twitter and Facebook I recently promised a quick update… so here I am. I am going to try to keep it brief and to the point. In advance, please forgive any spleling or grammar errors, I’m in a little hurry to get off the laptop, and all the French road signs have fried my little American brain. 🙂 I hope that when this trip is over, I can motivate myself to write about some of the adventures we’re having. If history is any indication, I will lose motivation and this current blog will have to suffice.
Let’s set the tone. Tonight, Kate and I are tenting near the beginning of the Alaskan Highway, about 140 miles inside Northern British Colombia. We’ve avoided camping until this point, but today was milder than previously and the $110 “Motor Inn” across the street seems unappealing. We’re sitting at a picnic table munching at a road-dinner and I have a La Fin du Monde beer cooling in the remnants of a snow bank behind me. UPDATE! I have a La Fin du Monde beer in my hand. For those of you not familiar with La Fin du Monde, it’s a Canadian beer that is considered one of the better craft brews around and costs youan arm, a leg, and your first born to get a glass in the U.S. Seriously, I bought a 750 ml (22 oz?) bottle of this stuff for cheaper than a glass of cheapo wine would cost back in the states. The beer, the tent, the road laundry going in the campground laundromat, and this picnic table all remind me of the incredible adventure we’re on. When we hit Mile Zero of the Alaskan Highway today in Dawson Creek, BC we had already drive over 2,300 miles to get there, after the 140 miles into BC, we have about 1,500 left! But, I’ve strayed from the point, I wanted to briefly write about yesterday, which was an awesome day.
Jasper National Park sign in Jasper. The Red and White flying in the background. There would be people in the picture, but they were all watching hockey.
To explain yesterday, I need to start the day before. We had intended to visit Glacier National Park in Montana and drive to Calgary where we would stay the night. Glacier, while beautiful none-the-less, was minimally-open. The local town, St Mary, MT, was all but a ghost town. We managed to grab a coffee and Power Bars in the local grocery store which had opened for Saturday only. Anyways, our scenic trip was cut short, but left us with some awesome pictures and a moose sighting. Because our time was short in Glacier, we arrived in Calgary early and decided the only logical step was to drive onward to the town of Banff. So, we did. Banff is one of Canada’s (and North America’s (and the world’s)) great ski towns. We expected to find it in off-season mode like we had found Aspen, Grand Targee, Jackson Hole, and Big Sky before it. Disclaimer: we didn’t actually go to Big Sky, but we were near it and I assume it was empty. Instead we found a large ski community gearing up for closing day at its biggest resort, Lake Louise, and expecting another 2 weeks out of another local mountain. There was only one choice: Ski. Nothing really mattered: conditions, needed travel miles under our belt, cost, nothing. We were going skiing. So after a mostly restful night’s sleep in the expensive ski town/YWCA’s version of a hostel, we headed out skiing. It was a great day of skiing that rivaled any spring skiing I’ve done. Huge open bowls, decent soft snow up top, and even a few fresh tracks. WOOOOO!
I swear this isn’t fake. Seriously.
The rest of yesterday was a beautiful drive through Banff and Jasper National Parks… a must for anyone passing through mid-to-Northern Alberta. Saw many glaciers, huge mountain peaks, moose, elk, caribou, and big horn sheep (not a single US plate). This post will have to do for now, future posts depend on internet availability, time, and motivation. We’ll be in touch!