Welcome to Canada

Date: 19 – 20/06
City: Hope, Canada
Kilometres ridden: 263
Cumulative kilometre: 46972
Street: Paved Highway
Weather: Cloudy, rain/ fresh

We settled our noble steeds and were ready to leave around 10AM. Tad and Gaila gave us last instruction how to prevent back pain during traveling, so we had a short yoga session in the garageJ. Now prepared for the road, we said good bye to our friends, and drove off.

Tad recommend that we  take a small detour to ride via Chuckanut Drive instead of the highway, which was a really good suggestion. We really enjoyed it, thanks Tad!!

Just before the border it started to drizzle, so we put our raingear on and went through the border. Not long after, the drizzle turned into a downpour, so we took it easy on the highway and looked for accommodation in Hope, our destination for today. And we found a great hotel with hot tub and a heated pool for a great price.

The next morning it was raining even harder than the previous evening, so we decided to sit in the hot tub a bit longer and have a look at the weather tomorrow. We got a mail from Gerald, a guy we met in Nasca, Peru. He invited us to his house not far from here, so we loosly made an appointment for tomorrow. We started to hear news that large areas in Alberta are flooded  and that roads are closed. As we found out, one of the roads is the one we wanted to take to Banff. Let’s see how it goes, we will have to take it one step at a time

Date: 21/06
City: Pritchard, Canada
Kilometres ridden: 289
Cumulative kilometre: 47261
Street: Highway
Weather: Sunny, warm

The weather looked much better today. Looking at the road report showed us that the road to Banff is still closed due to high river levels caused by the rain last night. It was still cloudy but the heavy rain had stopped. So we packed up and left to meet Gerald. The road was in pristine condition and it was enjoyable to follow the meandering river. When we arrived at Gerald’s house we were greeted by two curious horses.

We settled in and not long after Mike, his friend, came over to say hello. We talked for a while when he mentioned that his horses need new shoes and that the farrier would do this tomorrow morning. Great, we’ll check it out, since I haven’t seen a Ferrier at work. We talked for a while and after dinner Gerald showed us around his property. He has some hundred chickens and when we told him that we had four and would bring them to the Vet if they got sick, he smiled.

The two horse that greeted us where Mike’s, so we had a short stroll to see Geralds horses which were on another field.

After a nice salmon dinner we chatted for a while before going to bed. What a pleasant day.

Date: 22/06
City: Halcyon Hot Springs, Canada
Kilometres ridden: 318
Cumulative kilometre: 47579
Street: City roads
Weather: Sunny, warm

After breakfast we went to a place where Mike’s horses got new shoes and a pedicure. It was the first time that I saw how it’s done.

We watched the farrier for a while. Then we returned to Gerald’s house, packed the bikes, took a couple pictures before we said good bye.

We decided to make a detour and stay at a hot spring, and see when the road to Banff is open again. So we followed the scenic Highway One and when it started to rain, we pulled in at a rest stop. By chance this was the place where the last spike was driven to finish the Ocean to Ocean railway connection.

We put our raingear on and continued to our final location a hot spring. To get to the hot spring we had to make a ferry crossing, which was not that exciting since it was pouring down when we crossed the river.

After a short ride we arrived at the Halcyon Hot Springs, let’s say we didn’t camp since it was raining; instead we took a nice block house.

The pool was nice and warm, so we stayed there until sunset, the view from there was just amazing.

At night we looked at the internet and found out that the road to Banff was open again!

Date: 23/06 – 25/06
City: Banff, Canada
Kilometres ridden: 423
Cumulative kilometre: 48002
Street: single/double lane highway
Weather: Sunny, cloudy, rainy, foggy/ warm, cold

We couldn’t resist having a dip in the morning before we left.

Today the rain was gone so we went back over the ferry to Highway One. This time the ferry crossing was really enjoyable.

The scenery on the highway looks more impressive when it doesn’t rain.

The next mountain pass had a bit of fog, which looked great.

The road to Banff has been open, but everything south or east from Banff was still closed. When we arrived in Banff we got an idea why. The part of the park was flooded by the river close bye.

In Banff we got a nice hotel with a great view from the room, have a look.

I really like this area with the beautiful scenery. The next few days we took some time for maintenance, strolled through Banff and hiked to the hoodoos, a stone formation that looks like a column. The view was as always fantastic and the sign posting for the tracking path was, well, lets say fair :P. Sometimes we were not sure if we were on the right way or if we were walking in a dry river bed. I think was possibly was both. 😀

When we arrived, there were tour busses, that’s when we realised that we could have followed the road….But what would be the fun in that? 😛

Sigrid did well with her leg getting over that terrain.

On our way we saw some Ground squirrels and met some deer which weren’t bothered by us at all.

Arriving back in Banff, we decided to have a look around before we returned to the hotel. We had a look at the Dominion Park Branch. In this building Canadas first National Park was declared in 1885. The building looked great and the view back to Banff and the mountains behind was just awesome.

Tomorrow we will start our last leg, getting up to Alaska and then to Prudhoe Bay.

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