Steven Ginn Photography

2007 Alaska Road Trip

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Day 34 (Tuesday, September 18, 2007)

Blue Spruce RV Park (Prince George, BC) to Whistler Campground (Jasper, Alberta)

Today was a pleasant drive southeast to Jasper. The first of the interesting scenery was at Mount Robson.

Mount Robson

We did not stop at too many other places until we reached Jasper and checked into one of the few national park campgrounds still open. This was the first time we had to wait in a line to get checked in. This park had over 800 sites so despite the fact that the sign below says that parts of the camp were full I suspect they had just closed parts of it down. It certainly looked mostly empty to us and some of the bathrooms were locked, notably the one closest to where we camped.


Here is a shot that is a little different than our normal campsite shot.


The most interesting part of the day turned out to be the elk herd hanging out just a few hundred feet from our campsite. At one point we heard an elk bugle and upon investigating we found this big bull protecting his harem. There were lots of signs posted around camp that the elk are dangerous during rutting season and to not approach to close, so we stayed back a bit.


Then the herd moved even closer to our camp so I took this up close shot from standing just beside our camp ready to dash behind the car if needed. It was entertaining watching this bull round his flock up and herd them around. At one point another bull showed up and this guy chased him off.


Tomorrow our plan is to drive the Icefields Highway south to Banff.


Day 35 (Wednesday, September 19, 2007)

Whistler Campground (Jasper, Alberta) to Tunnel Mountain Campground (Banff, Alberta)

The first thing we did today was to spend a couple hours in Jasper before heading south.

I wanted to use the internet so I went to the library but found out that unless I was a member of their library they wanted to charge me money. So I just passed on internet access for the day. Tony spent time exploring the town.


The drive south down the Icefields Parkway through the Jasper and Banff National Parks was beautiful especially since the sun came out for most of the day. Early on we decided to take part of the old highway and found it less than well maintained. We took this highway looking for a hike that Tony had read about but our directions were not very good so we missed the trailhead and we found out later that we would have had to drive up a side road that is apparently so narrow and winding that we would have had to leave the trailer at the bottom. I remember seeing a little spot that said trailer parking near one of the side roads.

Old Road

Just before the old highway rejoined the new one we stopped at Athabasca Falls, here is a shot of the falls below.

Athabasca Falls

Here is a shot of the main highway during one of the times in the day that the sun had gone missing.


One of the main stops along this highway is at the Columbia Icefields visitors center and taking the hike out to the Athabasca Glacier. Below is a photo of this glacier from the road just north of the visitors center.

Athabasca Glacier

Here is a shot of the trail leading to the foot of the glacier. Note the sign in the foreground indicating where the foot of the glacier was in 1982. There are signs all along the trail indicating how the glacier has receded over time.


Once you reach the top of the hill in the photo above you look down on the scene below at the glacier. This very tourist oriented location even has a small "safe" spot marked out for people to walk out on the glacier.


As we got closer to Banff it was interesting to note the animal crossing overpasses that had been built since they had fenced the road off to help prevent animals and cars colliding.

Road with Animal Overpass

After arriving in Banff and setting up camp at another almost deserted national park campground we went into town and had a great meal at one of the better restaurant. Tony had duck and I had elk tenderloin wrapped with wild boar bacon. We then both ordered the excellent chocolate souffle for dessert.

Tomorrow the plan is to drive towards Penticton and maybe do a little wine tasting before leaving Canada.


Day 36 (Thursday, September 20, 2007)

Tunnel Mountain Campground (Banff, Alberta) to Wright's Beach Camp RV Park (Penticton, BC)

Today was much cooler and damper. We drove north to catch the road we needed to take west and made a brief stop at Lake Louise. While we were there some small, very brief, snow flakes fell on us. The photo below shows a group of mostly Japanese tourist all taking photos of the lake. If it had been sunny I think a photo of this lake with the fall colors on the distant mountain would have been outstanding.

Lake Louise

After leaving Lake Louise and heading northwest on Hwy 1 to catch Hwy 97 south the drive turned out to be very wet. We made one stop at Yard Creek Provincial Park to have lunch and then kept on driving.

Here is a shot of one of the avalanche protection tunnels along the way.


Since we made limited stops along the way we made it to Penticton at a reasonable time and in time for the sky to have cleared up some, here is a shot of our camp tonight.


Tomorrow the plan is to spend the day in the area doing some wine tasting.


Day 37 (Friday, September 21, 2007)

Second night at Wright's Beach Camp RV Park (Penticton, BC)

Today we visited about nine wineries up and down the Okanagan valley. We did buy a little wine but not very much since we have very limited room in the car.

Tomorrow, Saturday, our plan is to head south into Washington and to get far enough so that we can make it home comfortably on Sunday. We will visit one or two more wineries on our way south to the border.


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