Day 8 - Saturday, June 5, Great Falls, MT to Bow River Campground, Canmore, AB
We got up at 6:30, did laundry, emptied tanks and took on fresh water. We left the campground at 11:00 am MT headed to the border. We are in the plains. The grasses are dancing in the wind. We can see forever. The ranches up I-15 are huge. The cattle are brown dots on green grass under puffy white clouds and blue sky. We saw three rainstorms in the distance. We got gas in Shelby where the Hi-Line crosses I-15. We crossed the border at Sweetgrass, MT at 1:30 pm MT. We drove from Sweetgrass into Calgary following a truck camper with Alaska plates thinking they would know the best way through Calgary. We got gas at a Flying J in Calgary and conversed with them about their route. They were headed to Edmondton and since we were on our way to Banff, we parted ways. We arrived at the Bow River Campground in Canmore about 6:30 pm and grilled steaks. The Bow River Campground was right on the rivers edge. It was dry camping. It was beautiful! We could have stayed there for days. We turned in at 8:30 pm to read.
Olympic Park in Calgary and the Bow River CG, Canmore
Day 9, Sunday, June 6 – Bow River CG, Canmore, AB to Snaring River CG, Jasper National Park, AB
We awaked at 8:00 am freezing to death. It was 51 degrees in the motorhome. Thank goodness for the propane heater!! We left the campground about 10:15 am and traveled through Lake Louise and Jasper. We took pictures of 2 black bears and a grizzly along the way. Along the Icefields Parkway in Banff National Park, there are huge jagged mountains jutting out from the earth. They are still snow coved. The park service is in the process of building bridges for animals to cross from one side of the highway to the other. Over the top of these bridges they have created fenced natural areas where the animals can cross without endangering them. Lots of trees and grass. It is so beautiful up here. Jeanne drove, Ed took pictures as we traveled. We arrived at the Snaring River CG at 4:30 pm. This is still in the Jasper National Park and is 5 km off the Yellowhead Highway (route 16). We sat outside along the river and had a glass of wine and read our books. It was so peaceful. Today, it took 6 hours to go 211 miles because the speed limit goes down to 35 MPH (50 KPH) in some areas due to animal crossings. It was a long day but so, so beautiful. We are planning our day for tomorrow to go up to Dawson City, the beginning (Mile 0) of the Alaska Highway. As of today, we have traveled 2,806 miles in 9 day, average 311 miles per day.
Day 10 - Monday, June 7, Snaring River CG, Jasper NP, AB to Dawson Creek, Alaskan Highway Mile O, BC
We awoke to a chilly 55 degrees inside the motorhome. We dressed quickly and left the campground at 8:00 am MT. It was drizzling rain. We got back on the Yellowhead Highway (route 16) and only about 30 minutes after we left the campground we encountered a huge caribou along the roadside. We took lots of pictures. We decided to take a different route up to Dawson Creek. Route 40 to route 43 via Grande Cashe and Grand Prairie…and did not go through Prince George this time. We cut off about 180 miles using the back roads. It was mountainous, and reminded us of Montana with lots of pine trees with hardwoods and Aspens mixed in. We crossed over into British Columbia before reaching Dawson Creek and did a hip-hip-hurray that we made it to the Alaskan Highway. Our mileage is 40,701.4 which means we traveled 325 miles today. We reached the Mile 0 Campground at 4:00 after a short shopping trip to Walmart. We’re pooped!!