Saturday, July 14, 2007

Some days, you just ride...

Today is just a travel day, since its entire purpose is to get us from Banff to Hope. It's one of the few times we'll actually spend on a real freeway.

It was "wheels up" at 9:00am, which is just wrong. One should never get up this early on vacation. Since I'm the only nocturne in the group, I am not getting a lot of sympathy on this point.

We have a good hour of beautiful mountain roads before we make it to the major freeway, so I try to appreciate it while I can.

While tooling down the road, I see Jill waving off to the left. I look, but there's nothing there. Then she waves for me to slow down. Why? I don't see anything? Then I see it. There is an elk on the side of the road! I'm doing 65, so I'm almost past him by the time I see him. I pull my camera out of my tank bag as quickly as I can, but I only get this one picture. Trust me, he was a big and beautiful beastie!

All and all, things are not looking too bad.

And before we know it, ninety minutes have passed and its time to take our first break of the day.

Rick found this sign for "Pee Meadows" particularly amusing.

Now things start to go downhill. Miles and miles trapped on a relatively ugly, single lane road, stuck behind campers that can't seem to hit the speed limit unless they are driving down hill. Jim loses patience with all the traffic and starts passing cars whenever he can, until Rick, Ann and I are so far back we can't even see them any longer. Being without a GPS or maps I don't want to lose track of them, so I wildly start passing traffic myself. I'm more than a bit surprised that I manage to catch up with them, and Rick and Ann manage to catch up to me. We manage to stay together, but it hasn't been a lot of fun.

About half way through the day we stop at a Diner in Barrier, BC. A nicely lady sits us down, but then doesn't come back for a half hour. Eventually we lose patience and decide to leave. Unfortunately, it will be an hour before we find another place to stop for lunch.

The sad part is that all the roads we've driven in Canada so far have been beautiful. It's sad that our longest ride is along the least interesting road.

Look, beautiful Kamloops, BC! Okay, not so beautiful, but at least they have a Dairy Queen. Mmmmm... lunch. Things are finally starting to look up. After all, doesn't everything seem better after a chili-cheese dog?

We finally hit the toll road, which is pretty much like an American interstate. At least it goes through some nice forest.

There is something about this rock formation that just speaks to me.

After a long day on the road, we finally make it to Hope, BC.

Tomorrow we take the ferry to Vancouver Island. Since we're only ninety miles from Vancouver, so it should be much more enjoyable than today.


Maktub said...

Woot! Vancouver. I loved the place and Vancouver Island is pretty good too.
How are you feeling now that the end is in sight? Are you happy to be coming home or itching for more?
What's been the most memorable moments and what did you leave out of the blog? hmm?
Are you guys planning on driving through Eureka? I've always wondered what that place was like.

Also when's the celebratory welcome home dinner?

BC said...

I lived in Eureka for a summer...

The pros: It's about as laid-back a place as you'll find anywhere, and it was 5 minutes out my front door to the sand dunes at the beach and the redwood forest in the other direction.

The cons: Work is scarce. If you're financially secure, it's awesome. If not, however...

All-in-all, it's an awesome place to live. Peter, please tell me you're planning on going to the Samoa Cookhouse!

Edwin Hoogerbeets said...

Peter, you mentioned that you are 90 minutes from Vancouver, so you are taking the ferry to Vancouver Island... Vancouver is not on Vancouver Island. But, you probably know that already by now.

Oh, and I second the Samoa Cookhouse idea. It is the last authentic cookhouse that used to feed the loggers back in the day. They also have this cool logging museum attached to it. Definitely worth a visit.

Thrashes Rakes said...

Aw! Only one picture of Kamloops? After all I heard about it?

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

Today we returned to the United States. We drove down from Port Angeles and I headed towards Portland to see my friend Bill. Turning onto I-5 South was an epiphany that the trip is ending.

I actually tried to talk Paul into heading up towards Alaska for another couple of days, but he decided that the divorce wouldn't be worth it. ;)

Anyone wanting to host a welcome home dinner, I'm delighted to attend. My current plan is to return to the Bay Area this weekend, then fly down to San Diego later in the week to get my car and have a celebratory lunch at Phil's BBQ with Paul. Other than that, I'm trying not to think about it.

It's been an incredible and life changing experience for me. I've always found it difficult to truly disconnect from work. Three months away has been very theraputic.

As for what's not in the blog, you'll have to buy me a beer and ask me privately. ;)

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

I will ask Paul, Jim and Suzanne about stopping at the Samoa Cookhouse on the way South. I've been a couple times before and its definitely worth the detour.

As for Edwin's comment about Vancouver, we were 90 minutes from the City of Vancouver, where we took a ferry to Vancouver Island. Then the next day we drove to Victoria, which is on Vancouver the Island, not Vancouver the city.

Does that make sense?

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

I'm afraid I don't have many pictures of Kamloops, mainly because its the Gary Indiana of British Columbia. Sorry my friend, you may just have to go on an expedition there yourself!

BC said...

If I buy you tequilla from El Agave instead of a beer, will you still tell me what's not in the blog?

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

You buy me a tequilla at El Agave, I'll tell you just about anything!

Lhaffinatu said...

I'm sorry to hear your trip is coming to an end Peter, but It'll sure be good to see your smiling face again!