The rainstorm took care of the smoke! But instead of smoke, we have clouds. On Friday it was 91 degrees in the middle of the day. On Sunday it was 48 degrees in the middle of the day. But we’d rather have clouds and rain than smoke.
This is Maligne Canyon. The pictures don’t come near to capturing how deep this gorge was.
A fire from a few years ago caused this spooky landscape.
And then on to Maligne Lake. The original plan was to kayak but it was too cold for us.
This is why we wanted to kayak on this lake. This is what the lake looks like on a sunny day.
It looked like this when we were there. Oh, well. You can’t time everything perfectly.
Interesting boat house.
Interestingly enough, there were quite a few tourists at each of these places and we heard no one except ourselves speaking English. There were lots of Europeans, Asians and Canadians. And most of the Canadians were speaking French. It seemed weird to feel like a foreigner in Canada.
So with the smoke gone we hit the Icefields Parkway. We stopped at Athabasca Falls. We’ve seen so many falls in our travels that it’s hard to impress us. We were skeptical about even stopping. Drove up and there were tour buses there and tons of cars in the parking lot. It was tempting to just move on. But we were there and it was there. The falls were like none we had seen. The drop was not that big but the water shooting through the narrow canyon was awesome. It was one of the more powerful falls we had seen.
And then we stopped at Sunwapta Falls. Again, it was worth the stop.
And then the views from the parkway. We were so thankful for a clear day!
And then we stopped at Peyto Lake. What a beautiful, peaceful place.
After I worked my way through this crowd to get a picture of the lake.
And then this. Campground was full but a note on the board said we could camp wherever we wanted in the main loop. Creekside is good. Now on to Lake Louise and Banff.
It was an interesting drive between Prince George and Jasper National Park.
This guy was hanging out by the side of the road.
We stopped at Moricetown which is where Alaskan fishermen can dip net for salmon. They secure themselves with rope and dip these huge nets deep into the water to catch salmon.
We found this community park with free camping. Free is good.
This is such a change in scenery
And here we are saying goodbye to the Bellevilles. At the dump station. We are going to spend some time in Jasper and Banff and they’ve already been there so they are heading south. I shed a few tears. It was a wonderful two months that we had exploring Alaska together.
And then this. There are lots of fires in British Columbia.
Somewhere behind the smoke is a beautiful glacier.
So we made it to Jasper but it is very smoky. The forecast is for two days of extremely hot weather and then two days of thunder storms and rain. Our choice was just to move on or wait out the storm and hope that it would clear out the smoke. We decided to wait it out since we probably wouldn’t make it up here again.
Spent the day relaxing at Pyramid Lake to avoid the heat. It was 91 degrees and smoky but a delightful day in the water.
My cabanna boy set me up!
A crazy Canadian had a brilliant idea to put a beach chair on an SUP! It worked. John thought it was brilliant too. His comment was “if I wanted to stand up I’d go wait at the DMV”. I think we might try this when we get home.
Nearing sunset. The smoke is turning the sun red.
And this morning the smoke is even worse.
Now we are hanging out in the trailer in a rainstorm. If the rain doesn’t help the smoke we will head out soon, which will be a shame since we will be driving the Icefield Parkway. Keep you posted.
We arrived at this beautiful lake on a Sunday afternoon fully expecting to get a campsite. But we were greeted with a “campground full” sign. It turns out that Monday was a state wide holiday in British Columbia. Oops. But inspite of the sign we were able to get sites, although not the best ones. We were able to move to lake front sites on Monday. And Belleville’s delivered our kayak right to our campsite. Such service!
Everyone told us they rarely have weather like this. 80 degrees and sunny.
Kayaking in this beautiful water with three glaciers in the background. That’s hard to beat!
That’s our campground in the background.
John takes a dip.
And then we visited an Indian fish camp. It was very interesting.
He dipped his net into the river and caught salmon!
There is a fish ladder which enables the salmon to swim up river more easily in places like this. Most fish go up the ladder like they are suppose to. Some fish like to do it the hard way by trying to go up the falls. He didn’t make it. Seems like a metaphor for life.
All and all a fantastic few days in British Columbia!
For the last few weeks we’ve been going back and forth between Alaska and British Columbia. We camped in Stewart, BC but drove in for the day to Hyder. Hyder is our last stop in Alaska. So sad that we are leaving this great state for good.
There is a wildlife viewing platform in Hyder. There are otter in this pond. But we didn’t see any.
This river is full of salmon spawning. The bear come to catch salmon in the river as an important part of fattening themselves up for the winter. We even stayed until almost 10 pm one night to see them but they never came.
Another beautiful view of the river.
Hyder is pretty run down. These are typical structures in the town.
And then this. A woman converted this old bus into her “restaurant”. Her husband catches the fish and she cooks it. Best halibut burger!
After hanging out hoping to see bear fishing in the river, we drove for about an hour on a gravel road to Salmon Glacier. It’s the fifth largest glacier in North America. We’ve seen lots of glaciers but it was well worth the drive.
The “toe”of the glacier.
Goodbye, Alaska. We loved you!
Headed down the Cassiar Highway on our way to Stewart and Hyder. Burned trees from a previous fire and smoke from current fires made for an eerie scene.
But then these old burnt trees still make for a beautiful reflection in this pond.
Our beautiful campsite on Boya Lake.
We finally could take our kayak out. 80 degrees and a mirror like lake was perfect.
Mike and Cindy
And back on the road.
Forest fire. They just let them burn unless they are a threat to structures.
And another beautiful campsite on a different lake.
And signs of autumn in the leaves on August 2nd.
But spring like flowers.
Another gorgeous drive under our belts.