Our Chalet Truck Camper

Our Chalet Truck Camper

Thursday, May 16, 2013

May 15 Lake Louise, Banff and a Bear

May 15 Lake Louise, Banff and a Bear

Left the horrible CG in Revelstoke and headed up PH 1 towards Lake Louise. There is no way to describe the beauty of the Canadian Rockies, snow capped, huge, looming, majestic. The informational signs said that the Canadian Army and their Avalanche Specialists are in charge of keeping this road open in the winter. Looking at the shape and steepness of Rogers Pass and all the avalanche paths, it must be a daunting task. Rogers Pass is inside the Canadian Glacier National Park. How settlers ever got through here is a wonder - had not to have been in winter!

 We are seeing a lot of truck campers of all brands, ages and sizes. No Chalets yet. Probably two thirds of the RVs we see are rentals. Just as Joe turned off the camera and set it on the back seat, a herd of mountain sheep was standing by the road behind jersey barriers. He did get a shot of the trailing sheep. We had passed an animal bridge a few minutes before and can only hope they were heading that way and not trying to cross the road. Most of the roads have tall elk/sheep fences with periodic pass over bridges for the animals.

A bear!!!! A HUGE black bear just strolled out of the forest and started eating wild flowers. We were able to pull over about 100 yards away and watch it for quite a while. We have seen black bear in Maine but they look like cubs compared to this bear. She/he finally just laid down in the sun and contentedly kept munching away. We have yet to see elk or moose but the elk droppings are just about everywhere you stop in a wooded area. 

Near Field, BC you enter the Yoho National Park and then cross over into Alberta to Banff National Park. Lake Louise is a gem, still not clear of ice and with a glacier at the end of the lake away from the lodge. Railroad barons built the lodge for tourism. It has burned twice and each time was rebuilt larger and grander. The lobby is utter class and we felt odd not having our ball gowns and tuxes on (as if we owned them!)

Leaving our Lake Louise walk and passing by the hotel again, we spotted this "thing" which I think is an Earth Roamer. Joe said Roy, our camping friend with the pop up, needs one of these.

From Lake Louise we took PH 1A which is called the Bow Valley Parkway. We had hoped to camp in one of the National Park campgrounds in a remote location but every one of the camps is still closed due to snow. We walked a trail down to the river looking over our shoulder the whole time for bear. We probably shouldn't have even gone a short distance as we were not prepared for any animal encounter. Sure was gorgeous though.

Banff is a good town for walking. It isn't large and the business, shops, coffee houses all have the same type of architecture to keep it looking like a mountain town. There was excellent RV parking near the town park and we walked from there around town for quite a while. We got in and out of two hand made chocolate stores with nothing !

Tonight we are camped in the Banff National Park trailer (RV) camp up Tunnel Mountain behind Banff. On all sides are towering peaks with snow in the crevasses, a very brisk, cold wind but incredible views. In order to keep this campground open all year, they built a series of wide, paved roads that run up the side of a hill. Each RV gets a wide part of the road and has power. This would be easy to plow in the winter to keep it open for all the skiers who must want to camp. We have been very impressed with Canada and their road system and how well maintained it is. I keep thinking of Ted and Cheryl and all the hiking opportunities here, anywhere from 4 to 25 KM right out of this park. I know Ted has bear spray and knows how to use it. We also think of Donna and Ed as we constantly pass bicycles laboring up steep inclines but having that exhilarating ride down.

No comments: