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Author Topic: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure  (Read 38518 times)

jmfreas5

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Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« on: May 12, 2014, 10:20:03 AM »
This is our first time blogging and I hope to not disappoint anyone.  This will help us keep all the memories we hope to make.  We are into our final countdown to May 21.  The spare bedroom is filled with all our worldly possessions that must make the trip with us.  The fishing rods were the first to go in.  We do hope to catch a few fish. All the little nagging chores are getting checked off the list daily.  We will have one last shake down trip this coming weekend with our camping group.  WE just need to make it through this little snow storm we have going on right now.  We have more than 6 inches and a lot has already melted.
To be continued later, TTFN

lucierenee

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2014, 02:49:12 PM »
Subscribing. ::)Happy Trails to You...........
Renee

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2014, 04:30:49 PM »
We just finished our last "shake-down" trip with the Colorado Columbine's.  What a wonderful group of people.  We will miss all of them and the outings on our Grand Adventure.  Thank you for all the well wishes.
While on the outing we started another list of things we need to pack in.  Most of it being food items.  We are not sleeping very well as our excitement grows. After thinking and wanting to make this trip for close to 30 years, it doesn't seem possible it is really going to happen.
The next post won't be till we are underway, so TTFN.

lucierenee

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2014, 11:55:47 AM »
Can you post photos?
Renee

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2014, 09:43:31 AM »
May 21, 2014

Our first day of travels- we were up early-3:30AM and out the door at 5:00 AM.  The dishwasher was still running, the sheets & towels were washed and in the dryer.  Everything was finally loaded either in the car or in WeBe.  I should probably tell you why we refer to the motorhome as WeBe.  When we first bought our 18 ft trailer back in 2007 we referred to her as WeBe, as in we be camping, hiking, fishing and just plain old we be going.  So when we bought the motorhome 2 years ago we named her WeBe II.
Our plan was to drive to Custer State Park in South Dakota for a couple of nights. We did see some snow outside of Cheyenne and a camel farm too. I offered to give Jim a break from driving and not more than 1000 ft after getting back on the highway a sign read, “Road Work next 5 miles.  Why do I always get the construction zones.  We under estimated our mileage by about 60 miles, oops. Just a grey over cast day.  Arrived at the Grace Coolidge campground around 1:30 PM.  Couldn’t get her level so had to call and change sites.  Luckily there was a pay phone and the number was a toll free, because we didn’t have any cell service.  Moved a few sites and she was totally level without any blocks, love when that happens.  We decided to head to the Peter Norbeck Visitor Center for a look around, small but nice.  Headed back to WeBe to get the bikes for a short ride before dinner.  Jim’s tire went flat and we had to walk the bikes back to the coach.  No worries, we fixed dinner and then headed to see Mount Rushmore.  20 miles of winding roads and watching for wildlife.  We saw bison, deer, mountain goats, rabbit, a cat, and antelope.  Mt Rushmore is always spectacular.  Had a little ice cream and then headed for home.
We are 2 tired people and bed is sounding really good.  TTFN (Ta Ta for now).

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2014, 09:45:06 AM »
May 22, 2014 – Day 2

Headed to Minutemen Missile Historic Site about 20 miles east of Wall, SD.  Stopped in the visitor center and read up on the history.  We decided to go on the 11 AM tour of the Missile Launch Center.  Jim B. was our tour guide, he had actually worked at that site and now just volunteers.  He was one of the officers that would have to turn the key along with another officer to set a launch in motion.  He would spend 24 hours at a time down about 35 ft in a hardened concrete bunker, monitoring all the computers and communications.  Pretty tight quarters for 2 people.  Up at ground level were 8-10 people who provide the security and cooking details.
The actual missile was about 10 miles away and in a concrete bunker about 80 ft deep. It was pretty cool to see it all.  At the height of the Cold War there were 1,000 + missiles and now there are about 450 active ones.  Most of the sites are in ND, MT, CO, WY, NE.
Then we headed into Wall, SD to have some lunch at Wall Drug and have a look around.  I remember the kids loving this place.  Also stopped into the National Grassland Visitor Center. Back to WeBe and a short hike.  Heading to Teddy Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota tomorrow.  TTFN

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2014, 09:46:54 AM »
May 23, 2014 – Day 3

Woke early and got ready for our long drive up Hwy 85.  Is was along bumpy ride.  But we did see a live Zebra in a pasture, and yes I did say a Zebra.  Not long after that, there was a box turtle trying to cross the road. Not sure that was going to end well.  After 325 miles we entered Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Unit. We were hot and dusty.  The entrance said today’s high was supposed to be 87 degrees.  Not sure what we expected but it reminded us of the Kansas Flint Hills on one side of the road and Badlands of SD on the other side.  Picked out a campsite and set up.  By this time it was already 87 degrees in the coach, so we had a late light lunch and jumped back in the car for a ride up the scenic road in air conditioning. A few nice little turnouts with some history.  The have bentonite clay here that looks bluish gray.  Headed back to camp, thinking we would set up chairs and watch the world go by.  Wrong on that count, we had 3 bison in the campground circling our coach.  I am hoping they do not decide to eat my tomato plant and basil I have sitting outside.  We waited and finally made it into the coach.  Turned on generator and A/C since we couldn’t sit outside.  After1.5 hours as I sit to write this up, the bison are just lounging outside WeBe.  We will plot our adventures for tomorrow.  TTFN

Betty Brewer

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2014, 09:56:48 AM »
So far so good!  I am already enjoying your adventures!  Keep em coming.

Betty
In Rapid City, touring the area
Betty Brewer

see where we are

Tom and Margi

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2014, 11:26:50 AM »
I, too, am very much enjoying your road stories and am looking forward to your future accounts.  We'll be travelling along with you on your Alaskan Adventure and remembering our trip in 2000.
 
Margi

zigmarie33

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2014, 12:27:08 PM »
Mick and Jim   it took forever to get registered and I finally made it.  Your adventures sound great. I look forward to hearing more. Be safe and love you guys.

Frank Hurst

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2014, 04:24:01 PM »
You lost we when you said that you were up at 3:30 am. I am just kidding. Am enjoying your log. Your bison in the camp ground reminds me of my drive through a herd of buffalo in Custer State Park. I won't do that again. 
Frank & Hilda Hurst
2003 Phaeton
2004 Malibu
Semi Retired Relief Veterinarian

jmfreas5

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Day 5
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2014, 06:55:40 PM »
May 25, 2014 – Day 5

Put up a few pics, one of Mt Rushmore, one of the bison next to WeBe and one of a rock formation in Teddy Roosevelt called a “Cannon Ball Concretions”. I’ll try to add a pics when I can.
Headed to Glasgow, MT for an overnight stop.  Stopped in Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site outside of Williston, SD.  Jim wondered how many semi’s would be out on a Sunday going north on US 85 and about that time we saw 6 or more go by.  I guess he got his answer.  We missed our turnoff for the shorter route to the NHS because there was construction and no sign.  About 2500 feet from the missed turn a semi goes roaring past and throws a rock which left a nice chip in the windshield .  Strong southerly winds made driving a bit tricky.  I offered to drive, but Jim said he could handle it.  In many ways, driving through ND is good and bad.  Lots of people have jobs but the scenery is ruined by all the makeshift housing and all the oil & gas drill sites.  What happens when these wells go dry?  Lots of rolling hills with a farm thrown in once in a while. 
We were craving “obstacles”, this is what Mason calls popsicles.  But didn’t find any yet.  But then it is only 5:30 PM, we think.  Not sure if we are on Mountain time or Central time. TTFN

Betty Brewer

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Re: Day 5
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2014, 07:19:54 PM »
Hi jmfreas5,
It would be helpful for those of us following you to just keep adding to your GRAND Alaskan Adventure thread instead of starting  a new one. I don't want to miss a  thing and I may get confused as to the day you are on or time zone or whatever.
 Sorry about your rock chip, but now that is  done and over and  worrying about a rock chip  is already handled!
Betty Brewer

see where we are

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2014, 09:27:50 AM »
Being new to this, I thought I was just continuing.  Didn't think I was starting over.  How can I correct this?  Any suggestions would be helpful.  Thanks

Betty Brewer

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2014, 09:36:58 AM »
It's been merged!
Betty Brewer

see where we are

Bill N

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #15 on: May 26, 2014, 11:13:20 AM »
May 22, 2014 – Day 2

Headed to Minutemen Missile Historic Site about 20 miles east of Wall, SD.  Stopped in the visitor center and read up on the history.  We decided to go on the 11 AM tour of the Missile Launch Center.  Jim B. was our tour guide, he had actually worked at that site and now just volunteers.  He was one of the officers that would have to turn the key along with another officer to set a launch in motion.  He would spend 24 hours at a time down about 35 ft in a hardened concrete bunker, monitoring all the computers and communications.  Pretty tight quarters for 2 people.  Up at ground level were 8-10 people who provide the security and cooking details.
The actual missile was about 10 miles away and in a concrete bunker about 80 ft deep. It was pretty cool to see it all.  At the height of the Cold War there were 1,000 + missiles and now there are about 450 active ones.  Most of the sites are in ND, MT, CO, WY, NE.
Then we headed into Wall, SD to have some lunch at Wall Drug and have a look around.  I remember the kids loving this place.  Also stopped into the National Grassland Visitor Center. Back to WeBe and a short hike.  Heading to Teddy Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota tomorrow.  TTFN

Thanks for including this visit in your report.  In July 1963, my missile launch crew (two people) was the first to man this site (named Delta 1).  It was the first of 150 missile sites built around Ellsworth Air Force Base, SD that was completed and turned over to the Air Force.  We accepted it from Boeing in a nice ceremony and another Launch Control Center (Bravo 1 near Wall, SD) was accepted at the same time. The reason for the simultaneous turnover was to insure positive control of the missiles should one crew attempt to launch without authorization. The second crew could stop the launch by performing an Inhibit Launch checklist.  Anyway, that was the stone age of ICBMs and I loved every minute of my four years on a launch crew and my entire 20 year career in missile operations and maintenance.  Each control center such as Delta where you visited controlled and monitored 10 missiles but had the capability of launching up to  50 missiles (an entire squadron) under certain circumstances.  Delta 9, the missile site you visited, was one of the ten assigned to Delta 1.  If you remember, the top of the missile launcher is covered with a plexiglass cover which allows one to look in.  It also allows Russian satellites to look in and that was a part of the SALT treaty that resulted in the deactivation of many missile sites including all 150 at Ellsworth AFB.  Delta 9 was allowed to remain as a museum with the provision that it must remain open to satellite viewing by Russians.  Anyway, thanks for the report.  It brought back many fond memories.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2014, 11:18:20 AM by Bill N »
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
USAF (Ret)
2002 Winnebago Adventurer 35U
Workhorse W22, 8.1L Chevy V8
2013 Chevy Sonic Toad
Furbearers:  Heidi-17(Forever), Grace-10 & Squeak-4, Winnie - 8 months

Jim Godward

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #16 on: May 26, 2014, 12:40:53 PM »
Thanks for including this visit in your report.  In July 1963, my missile launch crew (two people) was the first to man this site (named Delta 1).

You had a lot of the equipment that my group wrote the specifications for and later witnessed the delivery at the factory to ensure the specs were met.  Many of my guys were involved with the installation and onsite maintenance of MMIII Guidance sets at Grand Forks.  For some unexplained reason, I never made it to a site.  Management was no longer qualified as an engineer I guess.

Thanks for your service. 
Jim
Jim & Pat Godward
AC7PO & KD7ZDM
Hillsboro, Oregon

Tin man

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #17 on: May 26, 2014, 01:37:26 PM »
With all the hard work, money, and diligent effort, glad they just become landmarks, and never used!!!!!

Jim
Jim W
AKA TIN MAN
2007 36G Journey SE
2010 Escape Hybrid Blue Ox Air Force 1 Brake

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2014, 05:08:22 PM »
Thank you Bill and Jim for your additional information and your service to this country.  There is so much of our history that can't be understood until you see it.  Jim and I have learned so much during our quest to acquire passport stamps from the National Parks systems.  We encourage everyone to get out and visit the parks, sites, battlefields and memorials.  Once you start visiting them it becomes addictive.  We want to see more and more.

May 26, 2014 – Day 6

Today was a boring day of driving across northern Montana.  There is a reason why they call this “Big Sky Country”.  When you get on top of a hill you can see for miles and miles. US Hwy 2 was in pretty good shape with the exception of the 3 miles east of Havre, MT, which was dirt and gravel.  Guess who was driving, yes that would be me, the queen of driving in rain and construction.  Nice mix of sun and clouds, but very windy.  There were a few times I thought we might be in another country.  We went through some towns with names like Glasgow, Harlem, Malta, Havre, Kremlin, Zurich, Dunkirk, and Galata.
We are camped very close to the intersection of US 2 and I-15.  We are about 30 miles from Canada. We are pretty excited to be heading into Canada tomorrow.  But did have this thought as I was falling asleep last night, will the Border Patrol let me bring my tomato and basil plant across?  Time will tell. TTFN


Jim Godward

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2014, 05:45:13 PM »
I didn't think about it but going into Canada further west takes you through Cardston and there is a pretty goo carriage museum there if I remember correctly.  A little further along that route is a Buffalo Jump with great museum, docents and tours.  It is one of the best BJ as far as  showing and explaining what a BJ is.  Somewhere along that route is a RV Park with a barn and they serve meals and provide a nice evenings entertainment.  I don't have my log of the trip and my memory is failing so I can't remember the details.  Check with the visitor centers for specifics.
Jim
Jim & Pat Godward
AC7PO & KD7ZDM
Hillsboro, Oregon

Marsha/CA

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2014, 05:48:39 PM »
Quote
US Hwy 2 was in pretty good shape with the exception of the 3 miles east of Havre, MT, which was dirt and gravel.  Guess who was driving, yes that would be me, the queen of driving in rain and construction.

And that would also be me....it's a continual thing with us.  I take over driving and hit road construction, traffic delay, heavy rain, slight snow or tornado type winds.  And then there is the napping husband in the passenger seat.

Marsha~
2017 Heartland Mallard IDM231 Travel Trailer....Small but mighty.

Bill N

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #21 on: May 27, 2014, 10:46:03 AM »
You had a lot of the equipment that my group wrote the specifications for and later witnessed the delivery at the factory to ensure the specs were met.  Many of my guys were involved with the installation and onsite maintenance of MMIII Guidance sets at Grand Forks.  For some unexplained reason, I never made it to a site.  Management was no longer qualified as an engineer I guess.

Thanks for your service.

Thank you Jim and I also served at Grand Forks (and eventually retired there) in missile maintenance and oversaw the installation of many of the MMIII guidance sets over the years.
Minuteman became a very reliable weapon system thanks to contractor folks like you and those others who provided the integral systems.
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
USAF (Ret)
2002 Winnebago Adventurer 35U
Workhorse W22, 8.1L Chevy V8
2013 Chevy Sonic Toad
Furbearers:  Heidi-17(Forever), Grace-10 & Squeak-4, Winnie - 8 months

Bill N

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #22 on: May 27, 2014, 10:47:59 AM »
With all the hard work, money, and diligent effort, glad they just become landmarks, and never used!!!!!

Jim
  Right Jim.  The motto of Strategic Air Command was Peace is Our Profession.  Thankfully, we met that motto.
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
USAF (Ret)
2002 Winnebago Adventurer 35U
Workhorse W22, 8.1L Chevy V8
2013 Chevy Sonic Toad
Furbearers:  Heidi-17(Forever), Grace-10 & Squeak-4, Winnie - 8 months

John Beard

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #23 on: May 27, 2014, 10:57:23 AM »
I grew up in the Strategic Air Command as my father was a loyal serviceman...being a kid of a SAC NCO was not...great. The demands of the profession my father loved outweighed everything else in life. I remember the Bay of Pigs ordeal vividly, as well as a thousand other sleepless nights as a kid as my father was on alert status all of the time.

Talk about thread drift...sorry.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

zigmarie33

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #24 on: May 27, 2014, 04:01:12 PM »
Hey Mick and Jim     I didn't see any pictures.  Maybe I wasn't looking  in the right place.   Be safe      Love ya

Tin man

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #25 on: May 27, 2014, 07:03:20 PM »
Will be leaving for Alaska in four weeks July 1 and will try to post every day with pictures.  Wanted to do a web page, but the brides concerned that someone could read it and know we are not home. Must be a NY thing.  Really donor know how to do a web blog anyway.

Jim
Jim W
AKA TIN MAN
2007 36G Journey SE
2010 Escape Hybrid Blue Ox Air Force 1 Brake

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #26 on: May 30, 2014, 06:56:30 PM »
May 27, 2014 – Day 7
Up and out the door early this morning, we even set the alarm to go off at 6:30 AM.  Too bad I didn’t make sure it was set for AM or we might still be lying in bed waiting for it to go off.  I’ll make sure next time not to set it for PM.  Still we were on the road for a long days drive up to Lake Louise, about 350 miles.  Had to drive about 30 miles to the border crossing.  No problems there.  Headed north on Hwy 4 to Lethbridge and we past a guy riding a bike and about a mile down the road was a Monk with an orange-ish robe, bald head and sandals, just walking down the highway, very strange.  Then onto Hwy 3 to Fort McLeod.  I offered to give Jim a break from driving and took over about the time we hit Hwy 2, north to Calgary.  Scenery about the same as the plains of Colorado, pasture land and some rolling hills and no rain or construction, yeah.  About 5 Kilometers or 3 miles from Nanton, Alberta, we blew a tire on the Trail Blazer.  I had moved over to the passing lane to give a car on the side of the road some breathing room and there was this metal object in the road, I avoided it with WeBe, but not the Trail Blazer.  I was having difficulty with the steering and Jim thought it might be a belt that broke.  Then I saw smoke out the back.  Pulled to the side of the road.  Boy, did I annihilated the front driver side tire. There was a gentleman by the name of Ken who stopped to help.  He was a retired tow truck driver.  We couldn’t get the spare tire to drop down from underneath the car and finally called AAA.  Ken sat with us in WeBe because the mosquitoes were having a heyday with us.  We told him he didn’t need to stay with us but he said since his wife died he had plenty of time.  He told us stories about panning for gold, meeting Walt Disney, who gave him his card and said if he was ever in CA, come to Disneyland.  This all took place in the 1960’s.  Well, he and a cousin went on a road trip down to Mexico and on the way back up to Alberta they stopped at Disneyland.  It was closed that day, but he said he called up Walt and he took them in and let them have a look around.  We were glad to have his company while we waited for AAA. 
Got the tire changed and headed for the nearest tire store to replace the tire.  By this time, I am a mess.  I had stood on the side of the road with semi’s whizzing past as my husband laid under the car wrestling with that stupid spare tire.  Oh, we also had to undo the bikes that are on the back of the Trail Blazer to open the back to get to the device to drop the spare from underneath the back. I never said so many prayers at one time.  Went to  Integra Tires, small little operation and they only had one particular brand of tire to fit the Trail Blazer, $495 CA later and a total of 3 hours we were on our way again.  Oh those little bumps in the road so many told us about.  To be honest, I am done with bumps in the road for a while.
We finally make it into Calgary but directions were not the best and when we got off the Deerfoot Trail, which was another name for Hwy 2 and tried to find the exit for Hwy 8, the exit sent us going east.  I know we have had a stressful day but I thought we were supposed to be going west.  A few exits later we were able to turned around and heading towards Banff/Lake Louise.  We passed the Canada Olympic Park, which hosted the Winter Olympics in 1988. It was really cool to see the ski jumps and a couple of arena’s.  Now we are making progress.  We can see the Rocky Mountains ahead of us.  We start climbing some hills and I see a sign at the bottom of a very short exit that says “Texas Gate”.  A few miles down the road and there it is again and the only thing I can see is a cattle guard.  We also saw signs for “Watch for Pedestrians on Highway”, once again, strange.
We are about to Banff and we are seeing all these beautiful snow covered mountains skirting along the highway.  You could almost visualize the glaciers of long ago.  There was one particular peak that Jim said it reminded him of a scoop out of an Igloo.  That doesn’t mean much to anyone but the Ryan Family.  Igloo’s are a very special Christmas dessert that is made with chocolate wafers and whipping cream.  We also passed under several of these tunnels that were specially built for wildlife to cross this 4 lane highway.  I’ll try to down load a picture or two.
We now arrive at the entrance to Banff National Park.  It is official, we are in the Canadian Rockies. That is after we pay the $58.50 park pass.
We drive onto Lake Louise to the campground.  The entrance building is closed and we figured out that you pick a sight and then come back to pay and give them your camp site number, which ours is #37.  Now though we can’t find any potable water.  The area designated for this, the water is turned off.  After asking numerous people, who must have come into the campground with plenty of water, no one knew where we could get water.  Finally found a washroom that had a hose and we just hooked up and filled up. Even though this is an electric site, they are turning off the power from 8 PM to 4 AM.  Great, no O2 for me tonight.  Hope we have electricity tomorrow night.
I am tired and ready for a glass of wine.  TTFN 

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #27 on: May 30, 2014, 06:57:55 PM »
May 28, 2014 – Day 8

Happy Birthday Sissy Renee- we hope it was a good one.
Late morning today.  It felt good to sleep in.  Our neighbors here at Lake Louise Campground were Susie and Peter from London, on holiday for a few weeks.  Nice folks.  They came by for a tour of WeBe, which we are always happy to give.  After they left and we ate breakfast we headed for Banff.  Weather cool & cloudy, with some rain over night.  After a 35 mile drive we explored downtown Banff and it felt good to walk around.  Window shopped but did find a few items for gifts for family.  Went up from town slightly to check out the Banff Springs Hotel.  I am curious about this and the Chateau Lake Louise.  One of these hotels is where I stayed once with my family about 50 years ago. It was a beautiful hotel with lots of brown stone and very expensive.  It sits up above the Bow River Falls. With such an over cast sky we decided to head to the Upper Banff Hot Springs. 
Luckily I had brought along swim suits and towels.  What a way to soak away some of the miles and a bargain for only $7.30 CA each.  And what a view, snowcapped mountains surrounded us.  About 104 degrees and time.  It wasn’t a big place but good people watching.  After we were wet noodles we decided to go back into Banff for a Cow’s ice cream.  They say it is Canada’s ice cream.  Pretty good if you ask me.  As we were walking out of the store with ice cream in hand, a cold wind kicked up and we thought, time to head for home.  Took Hwy 1A, which is a scenic route back to Lake Louise.  Not far along the skies opened up and the rain fell.  Figured all the animals would head up into the trees.  It was heavily wooded with lots of down trees, we felt it was ripe for a fire some dry season.  But we did see a black bear wandering down the side of the road and then up into the trees.  Jim was spastic to get a picture, he loves looking for wildlife.  Almost through the drive and we came upon a small memorial to those who had been in an Internment Camp back in the 1915’s.  Germans, Austrian, Turkish and Hungarians were rounded up and put there to work on the road in horrible conditions, because Canada was at war with those countries.  There was a picture of some of them standing outside in -25 degree weather with no shelter and limited food.  It makes me sad to see how we have treated our fellow man.  Hope to never to see it happen again.
Rain ending and sun coming out so we headed up the road to Lake Moraine.  7 miles of some steep climbing and lots of snow still along the edge of the road.  What a beautiful sight we saw.  Mountains with snow on top, some ragged peaks and this frozen lake.  There was still snow on the path to the lake.  Saw one guy’s foot sink into the snow up to his knee.  Definitely startled him.  Chantal tell your mom she was right, it is a stunning place.  Glad we drove up to see it.  Back down the hill to check out Chateau Lake Louise.  This feels a little familiar.  Also another grand hotel sitting on the edge of a frozen lake.  Wander around in awe. Bought a few postcards and stamps to write later tonight. 
Back to WeBe to have some dinner and a quiet evening.  And hopefully with electricity.  TTFN

jmfreas5

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #28 on: May 30, 2014, 06:58:55 PM »
May 29, 2014 – Day 9
Happy birthday sissy Pattee- hope it too was a good one.

Today started out cold, grey and wet.  And it ended that way to.  Hopefully tomorrow is a sunnier day.  We thought we would take a drive up Hwy 93, also known as the Icefield Parkway. We wanted to scope out what the first part of the drive tomorrow might be like and look for wildlife.  A smaller road and a little rough, but not too bad.  It was a steady climb up to the Bow Summit.  A few pretty lakes that were still frozen over. We stopped to take pics of the Crowfoot Glacier.  Amazing to think the area between the 2 rugged peaks once held nothing but snow and ice. And so many of those peaks are surrounding us.  While heading back down we decided to head over to Yoho National Park and the tiny town of Field.  Not much to the town, a school, lots of bed and breakfast places and a post office, which we dropped off a few postcards.  Thought we might get in a hike or two but the rain was very steady, so we decided to head back to WeBe for a grilled cheese and soup.  Even with the rain we got out to check out what is referred to as the Spiral Tunnels.  The tunnels were built to lessen the grade for the trains to go over Kicking Horse Pass.   
With the rain still coming down a nap seemed in order and it felt good to while away an afternoon.  Once we woke up I made some Snickerdoodle cookies and had afternoon tea.  A rare beam of sun peaked out from behind a cloud, so we jumped on the chance of a quick walk around the campground.  I thought I would mention the campground sits right next to the train tracks and you jump when that whistle blows, they’re pretty good about not blowing the whistle at night.  Catching up on reading and relaxing before our drive to Grande Cache tomorrow.   TTFN

Gord N.

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Re: Our Grand Alasakan Adventure
« Reply #29 on: May 30, 2014, 07:51:59 PM »
jmfreas5:
Glad to hear you are enjoying you trip through the Rockies so far.  Just a couple of comments I'd like to make.  I really think you were "hosed" on the price of that Trailblazer tire.  You probably made the guy's day when he saw your licence plates.  Thankfully, all Canadians, as you will find out are not that inconsiderate.  At the Lake Louise campground, since temperatures still reach below zero at night during May and even some of June, the water is likely turned off at the sites.  Thankfully you found a source.  As to the power being turned off from 8:00 pm -overnight, that one is a puzzle.  The Parks people know that people need electricity to operate their furnaces and heaters at night.  Obviously, you would not want to run a Generator and disturb your neighbors, so I can't understand that policy.  So I will be writing to Parks Canada and asking why this policy is in effect.  You pointed out an obvious reason why it shouldn't be, as you mentioned an O2 device you depend on for your comfort.  If I get a response before you end your trip, I'll post back and let you know what they say.
If you find other situations during your time in Canada are not to your liking, don't hesitate to complain.  At the very least you deserve an explanation.  Canada's tourist Industry is an important source of revenue for Alberta and British Columbia citizens.  You will probably encounter quite a few 'cold' nights until the middle of June over the course of your trip to Alaska. I really hope you enjoy your adventure and your time in Canada.

Gord

 

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