Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Journey There

We never seem to be able to get off early in the morning when we go on holiday, just too many last minute things to do.  Just trying to get it all set up with the animals and the plants is a job on it's own.  Anyway, we finally left about 10:30 am.

After heading to the end of the Fraser Valley, which isn't a whole lot above sea level, we start up the Coquihalla Hwy, which is a long climb uphill.  One of the landmarks on that highway is the snowshed, which protects the travellers from snow that rumbles down that hillside in winter.

And up near the top is this spectacular hunk of rock called Zopkios Ridge

And here we are at the top, after climbing 4000 ft.  All these photos were taken from the truck cab, so that, and the smoke in the air from numerous forest fires in the province can take the blame for the not so great quality of photos.

After the summit there is a long hill down, and then another long climb back up, and then another long hill down to the town of Merritt.  We stopped there at the Tourist Info and stretched our legs, took the dogs for a walk, etc.

After you leave Merritt, there is another long climb up, and we end up even higher than before.  Surrey  Lake summit 1444 metres.

After dropping back down into Kamloops, the drive is flat for a while, in the semi arid interior of the province.

Just north of Salmon Arm, a bear ran across the highway and into the trees on the side of the road.   On the whole trip I saw two bears, two deer, two bighorn sheep and a coyote.

Another pee break at Craigellachie, at the rest stop.  This is where the last spike was driven to connect the railway coming from the east and the west of the country.

The dogs weren't too thrilled about posing here, as they were on an open metal grate.

We continued on to Revelstoke and stayed in a campsite at Williamson Lake.  Some lucky people got to camp right along the lake. 

We were cheek by jowl with the other trailers.  The showers were hot, and the price was decent, so we didn't mind for one night.  The dogs got some swimming in just out of the park boundary, and then we took a walk down a trail.  One of those that you aren't quite sure where it is going, and it was dusk, and I am thinking BEARS! so finally we made our way out to the road and back to the campsite.  I had seen a pile of bear poop, and it wasn't anywhere near as big as the one back home.  Add to that the mosquitoes that were attacking, and we were glad to get back.

The next morning we were off about 8:30. 
The scenery was spectacular.  It really reminded me that we need to drive through other parts of the province every few years just to remind ourselves how wonderful it really is.  Not that I would want to live there, but sure spectacular to look at.

Here there are chainlink panels hanging to help keep rocks from bouncing onto the road

And a fairly new bridge just out of Golden

Jake was a little p*ssed that we wouldn't throw anything for him into that racing river

We saw waaaaay too much of this guy.  That pile of gravel he's shovelling never seemed to get any smaller.

But if you were working there, you sure couldn't complain about the scenery

We lucked out and got the right of way on a one lane stretch of road.  The back up coming the other way was about three miles long.

And now we really felt like we were getting somewhere.

We went into Banff to get something quick to eat and some gas, but it was impossible to find anything.  Talk about a tourist town.  The streets were packed, no where to park.  The only gas station we saw was full, and no where easy to get in to eat.  In the end we just pulled out and headed on to Canmore, which wasn't too far down the road.

We did see lots of these things under construction though.

They are wildlife overpasses.  After a few years trees and shrubbery grow up, and it is a way for the larger wildlife to cross the highway.  Since there are 8 ft fences all along the side of the highway, that is really the only way for them to cross.  

More spectacular scenery

And then we stopped at the Tourist Info at Canmore.  Bathrooms, sani-dump for the trailer, dog area with room for a soccer game, and a shallow pond for cooling off across the road.  Next door was a gas station and McDonald's, and the great scenery was a bonus.  Could have done without the mosquitoes though.

Pretty soon we were out of the mountains and into the foothills.  The canola fields were amazing.

And here it is!
If any of you follow the horse jumping world, you would know that many international jumping events are held here.

The igloo survived the trip.  Amazing, nearly 1000 km, and up to 100 kph, and it looks pretty well the same as when we left home!

Tomorrow I'll tell you about the time at Spruce Meadows.
Unfortunately the agility didn't go well:(


  1. What great pictures and a fine post. Hope you guys had fun
    Benny & Lily

  2. What stunning scenery! Absolutely beautiful!! I cannot decide which is prettier the mountains or the canola fields..thanks for sharing! It is good to get away, we have not gone very far away from home this summer..yet! :)

  3. I just told Bailey and Lilly to pack their stuff... we're moving.

    With scenery like that, I don't think I'd give a darn about how well I did in the trial.

  4. Wow...loved the pics. Hopeyou had a ball!

  5. Your country is absolutely beautiful. The brilliant yellow-green of the canola fields is amazing. Really cool that you have wildlife bridges. Excellent idea! Thought the chain mail down the mountainside was the best "keep the rocks off the road" solution yet.

    The photo of the dogs on the train gave me a huge smile. :)

    Wishin you continued happy trails,

  6. Great pix.

    Uh-oh about the rest. Eagerly waiting to hear the details. :-)


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