Posts From Canada

The journey continues (Rest Area on Canada 1, Canada)

Journal entry for Thursday 11th Aug, 2016 (day 17, miles 2,408)

So we are on the road again and the "journey continues". Since the last entry we have been back to our house in Washington, to undertake a series of chores that deserve no discussion. In addition we had a visit from our eldest son Brendon and we accompanied him into the mountains of British Columbia where Nina and I played support team to a brief solo mountain biking expedition. to read the full post

Picturesque camp (Nahatlatch Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 12th Aug, 2016 (day 18, miles 2,528)

We expect today to be a bit of a model for our time in British Columbia. A relative short day in terms of mileage, but a good stretch of that mileage on rocky roads, and at the end of the day a really picturesque campsite (this time beside a glacial lake). There is not much to say about such a day that is not captured in the photos. to read the full post

A trap for the unwary (Carpenter Lake, BC, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 13th Aug, 2016 (day 19, miles 2,671)

Gun Creek Camp Ground, where we camped tonight, is located in the bed of Carpenter Lake where Gun Creek enters the lake. The campground is provided and maintained by BCHydro and the lake is a source of water for a BCHydro generating plant. Just near the campground is the site of an old town that was flooded when the lake filled after the damming of Bridge River. The campground is very popular as 4x4 types can easily access the dry floor of the lake to have some fun, and make some dust, in the dry silt. However, as we discovered the dry silt might be fun but when wet the stuff makes for getting quickly and thoroughly stuck. to read the full post

Hurley Wilderness (Lilloet Fire Road, Canada)

Journal entry for Sunday 14th Aug, 2016 (day 20, miles 2,728)

We did a bit of exploring around Gold Bridge this morning before heading down the Hurley Wilderness road, a summer only road that provides a short cut to Pemberton from Gold Bridge, it was quite rough and rocky as it seems to get a lot of traffic that is in a hurry. to read the full post

A day in Pemberton (Twin One CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Monday 15th Aug, 2016 (day 21, miles 2,771)

Into Pemberton this morning for the usual type of chores after a few days in the "wilderness", groceries, internet, real coffee, a visit to the Visitor Info center. to read the full post

A few hikes (Birkenhead Lake CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Tuesday 16th Aug, 2016 (day 22, miles 2,828)

The day started with another rescue mission. One of the other campers at Twin One had managed to flatten their vehicle's battery overnight and came calling asking for a jump start; which of course we did. We like to pay it forward, we have been helped by other people many times. to read the full post

A rest day (Birkenhead Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Wednesday 17th Aug, 2016 (day 23, miles 2,828)

A rest day at Birkenhead Lake, a short hike, and some general relaxing in the forest and by the lake. to read the full post

Highline Road (Gun Creek CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Thursday 18th Aug, 2016 (day 24, miles 2,913)

Today we traveled back to the Goldbridge area via a spectacular series of roads. The first of these was called the Highline Road, and it was well named. It followed the western shore of Anderson Lake but was cut high on the valley wall rather than on the lake front. Spectacular, with a number of really steep rough climbs. At the Northern end of Anderson Lake was a short section of flat road through Seton Portage to Seton Lake and the village of Shalalth, and then a 3000 ft climb and descent over Mission Mountain Road to Carpenter lake, Goldbridge and a return visit to Gun Creek CG. to read the full post

Washing day (Clinton, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 19th Aug, 2016 (day 25, miles 3,031)

Another warm summers day and a stop in Lillooet to do some laundry before heading up highway 99 and then 97 to the town of Clinton to a real campground with showers and electricity. I felt the need to give the camper batteries some real electricity as we have been having trouble getting them fully recharged. The electrical system in the ER seems inadequate but I have not entirely worked out what the problem is. At some point I will do an entry devoted to electrical issues. to read the full post

Roast Lamb (Little Big Bar CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 20th Aug, 2016 (day 26, miles 3,059)

We hung around the campground this morning enjoying the nice sun and the camps wifi. In Clinton while filling up with fuel we got talking to a local guy who had ridden a motorcycle to Ushuaia, Argentina, you never can tell about people. to read the full post

The Mighty Fraser (Bull Canyon CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Sunday 21st Aug, 2016 (day 27, miles 3,198)

There was some cloud in the sky this morning and threat of rain (which eventually arrived) as we got onto the road for a pleasant drive through a series of valleys and eventually along an escarpment beside the Fraser River with really spectacular views. Finally the road dropped off the escarpment and down to a steel bridge across the river where to our surprise we met up with the motorcyclists from last nights camp. There after followed a discussion about our proposed route. They thought they had found the correct road but it was rough and boulder covered, so not to their liking. to read the full post

Boring (Dugan Lake CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Monday 22nd Aug, 2016 (day 28, miles 3,287)

Not a very interesting day. After a fast drive from last nights camping spot (the first of the two photos below) to Williams Lake we spent over half the day in the car park of either Walmart or Canadian Tire catching up on "business". to read the full post

Déjà Vu (Greeny Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Tuesday 23rd Aug, 2016 (day 29, miles 3,354)

As we headed to our chosen camping spot this afternoon, Greeny Lake near Lac La Hache, it dawned on us that we stayed at this very same park on our way north in 2009. A quick look at our blog confirmed this and even gave us a date 3/31/2009. As you can see from the pictures below conditions today are a bit different from that previous visit. to read the full post

Backroad wanderings (Howard Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Wednesday 24th Aug, 2016 (day 30, miles 3,416)

We spent the day following various backroads past a series of picturesque lakes finally arriving at Howard lake for our nights resting place. to read the full post

Mushrooms (Latremouille Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Thursday 25th Aug, 2016 (day 31, miles 3,511)

Our backroad wanderings continued today and a series of logging and other gravel roads led us past a series of lakes. The wet nature of the countryside produced a good supply and variety of fungii and the bright sunshine had us more than a bit carried away with the photography. to read the full post

Bears and Beavers (Deadman Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 26th Aug, 2016 (day 32, miles 3,610)

We continued our wanderings this morning heading south along forest roads from Bridge Lake with the plan on getting to the area around Castle Rock Hoodoos Provincial Park. But that proved a little more challenging than we had expected as we had to reconcile differences between various maps. The result of this resolution was that we ended up traveling along Brigade Creek Fire Service Road. It was clear from the start of this 12 mile section of road that it was little used as there were no tire marks in the sand, an impression that was eventually reinforced by a series of fallen trees blocking our path. So we spent some of our time either pulling trees off the road with the front winch or simply pushing them out of the way with the front bumper. The final mile of the road was a steep descent into Deadman Creek and we were nervous for a while that we would be faced with an impassable crossing of that creek; but all was well. to read the full post

A nice lakeside camp (Leighton Lake CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 27th Aug, 2016 (day 33, miles 3,669)

It was raining this morning, and the road was now muddy, as we traveled North along Deadman Valley to Vidette Resort. We just wanted to get as far up the valley as we could to see if we could unravel some of yesterdays navigation confusion. to read the full post

Starting the day with a short hike (Princeton, Canada)

Journal entry for Sunday 28th Aug, 2016 (day 34, miles 3,784)

We got off to a healthy start today with a 3 mile hike around the lake, pleasant weather and nice views. Thereafter the day was about getting to Princeton. Though of course we chose not to follow the obvious highways but instead chose Kane Valley Rd, Voght Valley Rd, and Otter Lake Rd to Tulameen. to read the full post

A visit with friends and family (Vaseux Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Tuesday 30th Aug, 2016 (day 36, miles 3,895)

We spent a couple of nights with some of Nina's Canadian family at their house on Vaseux Lake in the Okanagan region of BC. They were kind enough to conduct us on a tour of a few of the local vineyards, show us some of the local wild life, as well as allow us to enjoy the tranquility of their loverly lakeside cottage. to read the full post

Lakeside living (Summerland, Canada)

Journal entry for Wednesday 31st Aug, 2016 (day 37, miles 3,983)

Just a short drive today to a resort town called Summerland situated on the western side of Lake Okanagan. This is a really popular vacation and retirement place. The campground we stayed seemed to be fully occupied by "permanents" and advertised itself as "affordable lakeside living". The travelers like us that wanted a nights camping got relegated to the "grass area" without facilities. to read the full post

Train trestles (Kelowna, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 2nd Sep, 2016 (day 39, miles 4,027)

We spent the nights of September 1st and 2nd with some more of Nina's Canadian family in Kelowna. We were more than a bit spoiled by this visit, a house with fabulous views, king sized bed, great food and lots of "catching up". On Friday (2nd) our hosts took us for a tour of the area including a nice long walk along part of the old Kettle Valley Railway. This was originally a spur line from the Trans-Cancada to link towns of the Okanagan Valley into Canadian commerce rather than have then ship goods in and out through the US. The line is now a cycle and walking track, with the highlight being the many wood trestles. to read the full post

The last weekend (Sugar Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 3rd Sep, 2016 (day 40, miles 4,120)

After saying our goodbyes this morning we made our way through surprisingly thick traffic into downtown Kelowna to do some shopping and then north towards Vernon before turning onto Highway 6. A little bit past Lumby we turned off the highway and headed towards Sugar Lake Recreation Area wondering whether we would be able to find a camping spot. It was, after all, the labor day weekend in a sense the last weekend of summer. to read the full post

More language lessons (Nakusp Hot Springs, Canada)

Journal entry for Sunday 4th Sep, 2016 (day 41, miles 4,237)

A nice relaxing day wandering along some of the lesser highways of British Columbia. We saw our first bunch of logs in a river/lake getting ready for transportation, caught a ferry and spent some time watching an Osprey (I think thats what it was) fly around its enormous nest waiting for us to depart. Late in the day we arrived at Nakusp Hot Springs. I had been keen to sample the hot water but one look at the crowd put me off, more like a stew than a spa. Having forgone the bath we decided to take a camping site at the place and thereby got another language lesson when the manager asked if we wanted a 'hydro' site we answered NO thinking a hydro site must be one with water. It was only later that we realised in British Columbia 'hydro' is a synonym for electricity as for many years BC Hydro was the only producer and distributor of electricity. to read the full post

Another beautiful forest walk (Crawford Bay, Canada)

Journal entry for Monday 5th Sep, 2016 (day 42, miles 4,330)

We started our day in an energetic and healthy manner taking a long walk (5 miles) along a forest track that once (before 1960) was the only access, by horse back, to the hot springs. As you can see from the photos the walk presented us with a lot of mushroom opportunities. By the time our walk was over the campground was pretty much deserted and throughout the mornings drive we saw lots of RVs and cars carrying camping gear on the road presumably heading home. to read the full post

Closed and cold (Palmer Bar Crk, Canada)

Journal entry for Tuesday 6th Sep, 2016 (day 43, miles 4,447)

Cool and windy today with occasional rain. Already, just a few days after labor day we see campgrounds and other tourist attractions closed for the season. The wind was good for someone however. This afternoon we stopped for a break at a Provincial Park and watched while a group of sail-boarders made the most of the wind. to read the full post

Biggest Truck (Kananaskis Trunk Road, Canada)

Journal entry for Wednesday 7th Sep, 2016 (day 44, miles 4,590)

A few photos this morning of last nights camping spot and the nearby bridge with a small hole in the deck and then back on to Highway 6 toward the resort town of Fernie. Along the way we stopped to look at Th Biggest Truck in the World in the mining town of Sparwood, though from what I can see on google the Belaz 75710 (built in Belarussia) with a payload of 496 tons is a more likely candidate for the title. to read the full post

First snows (Willow Rock CG, Canada)

Journal entry for Thursday 8th Sep, 2016 (day 45, miles 4,735)

It rained a bit overnight and was overcast this morning and the road was wet and hence muddy as we continued north of 940. Late morning we connected with Highway 40 (also called the Kananaskis Trail), a spectacular drive surrounded by mountains that eventually connected with Highway 1 just east of the town of Canmore. Highway 40 provided a herd of mountain sheep for our entertainment and the first snow falls of the trip. to read the full post

New family members, new camera (Cochrane, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 9th Sep, 2016 (day 46, miles 4,811)

This morning was bright, clear and cool, and we started the day with a short hike along a trail from the campground. The fall colors are really in evidence now. After our exercise we headed towards Calgary with the goal of shopping for a new camera for Nina before spending the night with Yvonne and Gary, some of Nina' Canadian family. to read the full post

Visit with friends (Calgary, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 10th Sep, 2016 (day 47, miles 4,841)

Another visit today, this time with Bernie (a friend we met in South America) and his partner Heather at their house in the south of Calgary. We spent a delightful afternoon and evening with B&H, reminiscing with Bernie about our South America experience and getting to know Heather a little better. They were kind enough to take us on a walk of the area around their house including a nice stroll through the Bow River Valley. to read the full post

Back to the mountains (Lake Louise, Canada)

Journal entry for Monday 12th Sep, 2016 (day 49, miles 4,982)

Yesterday we drove back up into the mountains and stayed at a campground in Lake Louise, but no photos as the day was a bit of a loss from the weather point of view. But today with better weather, bright sun, we backtracked a bit to visit Banff and generally absorb the spectacle of the mountains. This also gave Nina a chance to experiment with her new camera, and ask a zillion questions -- how do I & to read the full post

The Icefields Parkway (Jasper, Canada)

Journal entry for Tuesday 13th Sep, 2016 (day 50, miles 5,131)

Today I am going to mostly let the photos do the talking, they are more eloquent than I can be. As you might guess from those same photos we started the day with a visit to the lake and hotel at Lake Louise and then drove the Icefield Parkway to Jasper. We were blessed with glorious weather, bright sun and not a cloud in the sky. It was an opportunity to try out Nina's new camera that we could not resist. to read the full post

Last look (Kinky Lake, Canada)

Journal entry for Wednesday 14th Sep, 2016 (day 51, miles 5,206)

Another glorious day, though with a little cloud. We started the day with a drive on the Malign Lake Road and found a hike that took us to two lakes, Beaver Lake and Summit Lake. Again we used this as an opportunity to experiment with the new camera. This was obviously encouraged by the great light and spectacular scenery. You will note in photo 8 that with the use of the camera's panorama mode Nina was able to make 3 of me. to read the full post

To Edmonton (Spruce Grove CG Edmonton, Canada)

Journal entry for Thursday 15th Sep, 2016 (day 52, miles 5,390)

We spent today driving the road to Edmonton. We tried in the town of Hinton to get Nina a "nail job" but all the places we tried either did not do nails anymore or were booked out. Eventually she phoned a place in Edmonton (the value of the internet) for tomorrow. to read the full post

Nina gets her nails done (Long Lake Prov. Park, Canada)

Journal entry for Friday 16th Sep, 2016 (day 53, miles 5,498)

By the time the nail job was complete and we had stocked up on groceries it was after lunch. At that point we had not finally decided exactly where we would go but as the afternoon proceeded it became clear we wanted (over the coming couple of days) to go as far north as Fort McMurray. to read the full post

Busy highway and oversized loads (Crow Lake Prov. Park, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 17th Sep, 2016 (day 53, miles 5,498)

We started today with a nice long walk in the forest (and rain) near the campground and found a good example of a beaver felled tree. Once underway we made our way into the little village of Boyle for a fuel top-up before starting the stretch of road to Fort McMurray. Not far out of Boyle highway 63 turned from a rural road into a new 4 lane freeway/motorway/expressway (whatever you want to call it) clearly built to handle the demands of the energy industry, indeed we passed a number of oversized loads during the curse of the day as well as seeing many heavy transporters returning south. I was a bit captivated by the trailers and their many wheels, at one point we caught a photo of a returning combination with two prime-movers (at pulling and one pushing), 26 axles on the trailer and 8 wheels on each axle. to read the full post

Oil sands and wild fire (Engstrom Lake Prov Rec Area, Canada)

Journal entry for Sunday 18th Sep, 2016 (day 55, miles 5,614)

We were a bit surprised to see that there was less traffic this morning as we completed the drive into Fort McMurray. Sunday does seem to make some difference to the pace of activity in this energy boom-town area. The big interests today were oil sands and the wildfire that devastated Fort McMurray earlier in 2016. to read the full post

Boreal forest and beaver (Winston Churchill Prov. Park, Canada)

Journal entry for Monday 19th Sep, 2016 (day 56, miles 5,895)

I should have mentioned the boreal forest in a earlier entry a that is what we have been traveling through the last few day. Short skinny black spruce tree, birch and aspen now turning vivid yellow and the occasional stands of larch (tamarack) that look like pine tree that are turning with the fall. Around Fort McMurray the forest was obviously burned from the wildfire earlier in the year but even in these blacked tracks there were patches of yellow and green where some trees survived and in many places under the blacked spruce new grass could be seen. to read the full post

One last look at the Badlands (Oliver Reservoir, Canada)

Journal entry for Saturday 15th Oct, 2016 (day 82, miles 9,236)

We spent sometime this morning exploring the badlands hoping for some good light and then it was "hit the road" to read the full post