Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, totally worn out, shouting "Wow...What a Ride!"

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Enjoying Lake Louise-Banf National Park AB

September 12-16, 2016

A teary eyed  start to our Monday morning as we parted ways with our traveling companions, two months of traveling and touring with them, now we're on our own again. Our ride today was over the Rockies and down the Icefields Parkway which we had driven heading up into Alaska. As usual the scenery did not disappoint.

But we won't be alone too long. Our first destination was Lake Louise Trailer Park in Banf National Park where we met up with our friends MonaLiza and Steve of The Lowe's RV Adventures. Back in May when we saw them we found out we'd both be in this area at the same time so the meetup was planned. The evening was spent catching up and talking about Alaska.
The sites at Lake Louise Trailer Park are a little different. Pads are shared, hopefully your neighbor has left enough room for you to get in, thankfully ours did..thanks Steve. If your rv door is facing your site your electrical hookup is on the wrong side, with strategic placement it isn't too much of an issue. Since MonaLiza and Steve would be leaving before us we chose to have our door facing our site. Our site had no fire pit, some do, so we broke out our handy gas fire pit and enjoyed that while we talked the evening away.

 Good thing we like our neighbors, when they left we only had rental rv's in for overnights.

Tuesday we finally got back on the trails. We had asked MonaLiza to find us some easy trails to start with, Morraine Lake was our first hike in awhile.I think it was in the high 30's when we started out...brrr. The beauty here is simply amazing, so thankful we got to spend a few days here.

Since the first hike went so well we decided to try another one. The hike to Consulation Lakes was a bit longer and had just a bit of elevation gain. A bit of a rock scramble and we were rewarded with some beautiful views.

Our evening ended with another great meal, Alaskan salmon and Pancit-a Filipino dish that was so good.Thanks MonaLiza.

 S'mores for dessert :)

Another great evening around the gas fire. We sure hope Steve and MonaLiza like theirs when it arrives.

Wednesday we took the Bow River Loop Trail right out of the campground. A nice 4 mile walk with little elevation gain.

Thursday morning Steve and MonaLiza left, not sure when we'll see them again. But until then safe travels and we look forward to the next time we see you two.

Thursday we did the Bow River Loop Trail the reverse way we had done it on Wednesday. Friday we didn't do much, walked the campground loops and worked on travel plans for the next month.

 Until next time...

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Post Caravan Gathering

September 10-11, 2016

Saturday morning after our goodbys we headed east along Rt 16. Our destination was Valemount and Irvins RV Park where we gathered with four other couples. We have all become good friends and we're all heading in the same general direction for awhile, so why breakup a good time before we had to.

Irvins RV Park is a beautiful place with nice sized sites, all pull thru and 50amp. We got our Dish TV working again, life is returning to normal.

Our ride to Valemount should have been about 3 hours but it took a bit longer. Part way up a long hill an engine light came on and the truck started loosing power. We pulled over on the side of the road and started checking things out. Finding we could accomplish sitting on the side of the road we traveled on taking it slow. Soon the truck was behaving normally and our power was back but the engine light was still on. We made it to Irvins RV Park in Valemount BC, upon check in we were given a mechanics name and had scheduled an appointment for that afternoon. We got set up and the ribs in the smoker, then went to take the truck into town and low and behold the engine light was off. Cancelled the appointment since there was nothing for him to read, hoping it was a temporary thing.

We had hoped to have dinner outside but the wind and cold came in and all ten of us ended up in Mike & Liz's motorhome. Another evening of good food, lots of laughter and great doesn't get any better than that.

Sunday morning Dave decided to change the fuel filter in the truck, it didn't go as smoothly as he had hoped. After checking the owners manual things went a bit more smoothly.

We had everyone to our place for lunch (leftover ribs) and afterwards we all headed into Valemount to Three Ranges Brewing Company.

Dinner that evening was held at friend Jack and Dixie's motorhome. Our main course was prime rib, desert was cheesecake and an awesome Oreo desert Dixie has been feeding us over the last few months. Created some great memories, good food, lots of laughter with great friends. No pictures that evening, guess we were more interested in talking.

We created some great memories the last few days, Until we meet again, safe travels, we're going to miss you.

Until next time...

Saturday, September 10, 2016

61 Day Alaska Caravan: Day 55-61

September 4-10, 2016

Day 55

Only 309 mile to travel today, a nice ride and for the most part on roads we’ve already traversed. An overnight stop in Nugget City at Baby Nugget RV Park. We are in the wooded area and it’s actually quite nice, water and electric only and no cell signal so no wifi, but a few cable channels.

Great spot for lunch

 Not bad for an overnight stop
Day 56

Today our drive was a 197 miles long, since most of it was on the Cassiar Highway the going was slow. The Cassiar Highway is a narrow 2 lane road, at the moment most of it has no line stripes, a bit of construction here and there but all in all not a bad road. Not many towns but lots of beautiful scenery. We arrived at our destination, Mt Shadow RV Park in Iskut, about 2pm. While the park itself is nice, there is no Verizon reception or cable tv. There is a long list of don'ts in their hand out and nothing about being welcomed to their park.

 Day 57

Today's drive was 193 miles, finally made it to the end of the Cassiar Highway. We arrived in Stewart BC around 1pm, our campground is Bear River RV Park which we are sharing with the Fantasy RV Caravan group. The park is nice enough if only the rain would quit.

After our travel meeting we headed out to dinner with our friends Jack & Dixie to a place in Hyder AK called The Bus.

Next to Stewart BC is a little slice of Alaska, Hyder AK known for it's bear viewing along the Bear River. 

 Day 58

This morning we headed out for some nature viewing. Our first stop was the Hyder dump where we found a momma bear and her cub.

Later when we came back to town we found what we think was the same momma bear and cub. 

Our friends Liz & Mike have a motorhome and tow a jeep so today they took us for a ride up to Salmon Glacier.

On our way out of Hyder we stopped at the Boundary Gallery for some fudge, it's right across the street from the Glacier Inn.

Late afternoon we stopped back at the Glacier Inn so Dave, Mike & Liz could get "Hyderized", one of us, me, had to stay sober so we could get back into Canada.

The Glacier Inn was opened in 1956 by this woman's parents. During the summer (tourist) season they are open everyday, by the dead of winter they only open on Friday evenings. 

Round two for the boys. 

Another one of those places with walls lined with money.

Day 59

Today's drive was 212 miles of rain, scenery beautiful scenery but too much rain to get any good pictures. We are finally back into civilization, our overnight stop was at Fort Telkwa a few miles south of Smithers BC.

Day 60

Up and on the road early, 225 miles to go, rain most of the way but the roads get progressively better. We got into Prince George in time to accomplish a few things. A stop at Costco while pulling the RV, not something we usually do but we managed it successfully. Onto our campground, Southpark RV and then a trip back out to Walmart for a few groceries
and Petro-Canada for fuel. Since we will be heading back into Banf NP soon we wanted to take advantage of shopping to restock. Back at the RV we got a cheesecake going in the oven and baby back ribs rubbed for our dinner tomorrow.

Our farewell dinner was held at Fore Bistro which is at a local country club. Dinner was great and the presentation put on by our wagon masters was a great recap of our trip.

Day 61

One final breakfast with our caravan family. Hugs, tears and see you down the roads, what a great group of new friends we have. The caravan adventure is over, time to get back to real life again. I will post in the next few days our thoughts of traveling with a caravan.
The End

Until next time...