Monday, June 23, 2014

PC to BC via Alberta

Pincher Creek to Sundre

Apparently we lost a day somewhere on the road as Kathy thought it was Wednesday the 18th on Thursday the 19th. We drove from Pincher Creek, Alberta to Sundre, Alberta. We left late because Joy went into town to do the laundry and to give our eternal friend, rain, a chance to go away. When she arrived at the laundromat she realized the washing machines did not take US coins so her 20 pounds of quarters, etc that she had drug with her were worthless.  Thank goodness there was a Canadian couple in the laundromat who agreed to exchange the US money for Canadian money.  After Joy exchanged the $10 of quarters she realized the machines actually took two loonies and two quarters, the equivalent of $2.50 US dollars.  So, a second exchange took place and Joy now had the requisite amount of loonies and quarters.  The kind gentleman at the laundromat was extremely talkative and reminded Joy of someone she knew long ago in Corpus Christi Texas.

The Canadian Loonie
While Joy finished the wash, Kathy prepared the RV for yet another journey. When she was nearly ready to go she decided to go and take a shower at the bath house.  She left the RV unlocked but took the keys with her.  When she returned, the door was lucked.  It finally happened - Frances, the traveling poodle, had locked the RV by jumping into the cab and using her front legs to look out the window (and step on the lock button!)  The mule deer who had been hanging around since we arrived thought the whole thing was quite amusing.

We have learned to fill our fresh water tank whenever we are able so that no matter where we end up parking for the night we'll have water.  We did so today, too.  A little discussion about directions came up but as always we got back on track and before long we were northbound on highway 22.  The weather was still a little dreary.  Road signs warned of steep grades, strange looking deer, school buses, berry picking and moose.

We decided to skip sandwiches for lunch and sought out a local dive instead. The Longview Hotel was the perfect choice!  Obviously any place called Longview must have cattle, which made Kathy a little homesick. She ordered chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes and gravy. Joy ate a cordon bleu chicken sandwich with sweet potato fries.  Neither was good enough to return for seconds but they sure hit the spot at the time.

As had been the case the last few days, the rain began to fall harder as we got closer to our destination. Miraculously, by the time we got to our site the rain had stopped.  We uncovered the bicycles.  The cover is not in as good of shape as when we left, but Joy's sewing and duct tape is holding it together well enough to keep the bikes mostly dry.

We considered staying in Sundre two nights but the rodeo was heading to town so we could only get a site for one night.  We were remarked how grateful we were that we rolled in when we did and not a night later.

Sundre to Valleyview

The drive from Sundre to Valleyview was a quiet peaceful one for the most part. We started the day by cleaning the RV, which meant a good vacuum. Joy again taped up the bike cover and stored it for later if necessary. The weather was perfect for coffee al fresco with the puppies and we had a cup on the picnic table before tearing down.

The green foothills and signs threatening of elk, deer, and moose left us somewhat disheartened since we only saw two deer along the road. Snacks and lunch were quick breaks from driving for Kathy and but we wanted to power on since we had dry weather. We decided to push it hard and see how much ground could be covered and didn't stop until after 306 miles.  To some of you that may not seem like much, but we typically average 55 mph and towing a jeep up and down mountains can get a bit tiring.

Of course, what would a day on trip be if we didn't hit rain?? We once again drove through a pretty good storm but it was short-lived and we were thankful it go some of the dust off the RV and Jeep. We went ahead and paid for two nights so we could have some down time. The RV park was nestled in the woods and was described as being "restful and quiet."  Indeed, it was.

The next morning, we discovered army worms invading. They were climbing everything looking for food and there were so many of them it looked as if the grass was alive and crawling. Kathy remarked that she hoped no one was tripping on acid or else we might all be in trouble.

We decided to explore downtown Valleyview, which included a bowling alley, a garage sale, clothing stores, and a dollar store.  Kathy bought a new wallet (the first one in nearly 20 years that didn't have a badge holder in it) and Joy purchased more poop bags for the dogs.  We also bought groceries and washed the Jeep.

After lunch back at the RV, we did some exploring in the woods across from the park on our bikes. We found a snowmobile trail that edged a little pond with ducks and wild roses.  When we returned to the RV, the war with the army worms continued while trying to enjoy the great out of doors. We lost mostly, as they were crawling on our chairs, in Joy's hair, on the picnic table, etc.  Kathy steak and chicken and noted that the smoke kept the worms away.

The RV park had a lot of men who worked for oil companies.  The guy next to us worked for Chevron and had been there for 40 days.  He was a great old guy to talk to you and we found out he is building a house in Belize and his property there actually has Mayan ruins on it.  He told us places to stop and see on our way to Alaska and we really enjoyed his company.

We are still a day ahead of schedule and as of this posting have driven over 2400 miles.  We found Alberta to be a little boring with it's flat grasslands and are looking forward to seeing mountains again.  We are both a little road weary and are looking to getting to Tok and settling in for a couple of months. Thanks for traveling with us - preparing the blog allows us to relive our favorite moments of the day and reminds us of what awesome lives we live.


  1. My husband. says you are living his dream How exciting!

  2. Tell him to start living it! :-)