There were a few jobs to take care of at home – once the weather decided to cooperate and act a little more like spring. One of those was to replace the railings on the front deck and stairs.
Once that was done, and a fresh coat of water seal was applied to both decks, I decided that was enough for now!
Time to hit the road! But where too? I decided that north-western BC was a good choice as I had rarely spent time there, and had never been to that part of the northern coast. So … after Hailey woke me up early one morning, it was time to throw the summer camper on and head out. Original intentions had been to stop along Abraham Lake in one of many random campsites, but when we got there it was still early with lots of time left in the day, so we decided to push on.
Entry is free this year to Canada’s National Parks to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, but there were no smiling faces to greet us at the boundary as someone had decided the fees were too high last year and torched the entry gate.
Nonetheless, park elk and bears were on duty along the roadsides, and there was free scenery everywhere!
Getting an early start, crews were paving sections of the road between the snowbanks near the Jasper/Banff park boundary.
Athabasca glacier is still there, but it is getting smaller every year.
On through Jasper park we continued, the sun still up in the sky as we refueled in the town of Jasper and headed on west.
Earlier rock slides that blocked the highway had been cleared, and we left Jasper and Alberta, entering Mt Robson provincial park in BC and turned the clocks back an hour.
We stopped for supper at the Berg Lake trailhead, the start of the trail leading up and around Mt Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian rockies at 12,972. As a Park Warden in Jasper, I used to head out from this spot with my saddle horse and two trusty pack horses on 17 day patrols of Jasper’s north boundary. Views from one of my patrol cabins was of the north face of this impressive peak. But not today, and we moved down the road out of the park to find an overnight spot. By this time it was getting dark, but we found a secluded spot by a river and spent the night. In the morning, following the sounds of cascading water, and the sign (!) we checked out the first waterfall of the day!
Out on the highway again looking back, there was a fleeting glimpse of Mt Robson, with it’s usual cloud covering.
Just down the road, the next stop was the 2nd waterfall of the day, Rearguard falls on the Fraser river.
Finally, it was time for breakfast!
On westward we went, stopping to check out every trailhead and camp spot. One of these was a forest service rec site called Halfway Viewpoint, 6km up a steep, narrow winding road to an impressive view over the valley and the town of McBride.
It was still early, so back to the highway we went.
Another small waterfall was just downstream from another nice riverside rec site – duly noted for the return trip or future travels …
After checking out a few more parks and rest areas, it was time to find a scenic spot for the night. Still east of Prince George on the Yellowhead highway, we found what appears to be a forest service rec site (there’s a garbage can!) along another swiftly flowing river. A gaggle a kayakers went on past, unlike an unfortunate group of local youths who perished almost exactly 43 years ago just downstream.
Great to be back on the road again, with no schedule or commitments.