Sunday, August 15, 2010


Home, tired, sleep.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Last Day

Last Day in Calgary, shopped at the hobby store and Chinook Mall then got a beautiful view of the city from Scotsman's Hill. Packing now and getting ready for the drive to the airport. Cleaned the car windows so we can see, other than that the car is a mess! See our Cayman family in less than 24 hours!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Horseshoe Canyon

Decided to add these after all, this is Horseshoe Canyon, it is really hard to get a size reference. Best I can do are the pine trees top left. Put it this way, if you fell in it would be a lick!
Hayley in a wheat field; don't be fooled, she is no prairie girl! Strange thing is, this field is right behind where I took the picture above. It is all flat fields for miles and then suddenly this huge (but very pretty) hole in the ground.

Calgary Friday

We woke to cold and pouring rain. But set out for Drumheller nonetheless. This is the Royal Tyrell Museum, lots of dinosaur stuff!
It is a fantastic museum located in the badlands of Alberta, unfortunately it was too rainy for nice scenery shots.
All the kids in a giant dinosaur's mouth, the wind was blowing and that dinosaur felt like it would capsize at any moment!
After a challenging drive back (lost, road repairs, diversions, lunatic drivers, torrential rain) we had a great dinner and back to the hockey game.
I seem to have a history of returning rental cars in less than pristine condition! We leave tomorrow night and should be home by 4 on Sunday.

Calgary Thursday

We left Rocky Mountain House for the 3 hour drive to Calgary. A nice drive until we got to the city. We stopped at the War Museums and it was pouring rain and cold so a nice break from driving around in an unfamiliar city. We found the house with only a few wrong turns and some unorthodox city driving.
We had a great dinner and then played basketball and hockey. City skyline in the background.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Valemount to Rocky Mountain House

We left Valemount on the Yellowhead Highway and started the morning with a short hike when we got to Rearguard Falls.
It was difficult to believe that people actually raft from here.
Yes, the water was cold!
Nice uphill climb back to the car.
Soon Mt. Robson came into view, all 3954 meters of it.
We spent some time in beautiful Jasper, had some coffee, did some souvenier shopping, just forgot to take pictures! Sumwapta Falls was next.
Beautiful falls into a narrow gorge.
Still in short sleaves...
We slowly climbed up in elevation eventually reaching the Sunwapta Pass (2035 meters), the scenery was breathtaking. Suddenly we arrived at Athabasca Glacier.
After an uphill climb we ignored the warning signs and barracades and walked out on to the glacier.

Note the stream of people in the background and also that the temperature had suddenly become much colder!

Hunter with a piece of the ice as Grandma takes pictures. Safely down in the rubble at the tongue of the glacier visible just behind us. Truly an amazing experience.
The scenery on the icefields parkway was just amazing, no wonder it is one of the top 10 drives in the world. But this is Abraham Lake on the David Thompson highway from Saskatchewan River crossing to Rocky Mountain House!
Our only disappointment was seeing no wildlife all day, but then, having left the national parks behind we were surprised by a large black bear who climbed under the guardrail and passed just behind the car. Then a few deer of all descriptions just before we arrived at our destination right at 7pm. What a day.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Vernon to Valemount

Twas a chilly rainy morning that we set out from Vernon... got everything in the car but thought we would scrape bottom once we filled it up with gas!
But after a beautiful drive down the Yellowhead Highway we arrived in Valemount at about 4:30 and immediately went for a hike to stretch our legs. Note the snow on the mountains. The drive was about 5 and a half hours including a stop for lunch in Barriere and a potty stop in Clearwater. Got caught speeding but they let me off. Think it was the Alberta plates.
Very nice observation deck. On the hike we saw baby beavers, muskrats, ducks and a noisy flock of geese.
We then went to the salmon spawning at Swift Creek and listened as a guide explained the life cycle of the salmon. This spot is the end of the line 1500km's from where they entered the Fraser River in Vancouver. Awesome.
Late dinner at the Caribou Grill, now we are all exhausted and ready for bed! Jasper, Icefields Parkway and Rocky Mountain House tomorrow.

Last Day in Kelowna

Despite the cool temperatures, Hayley, Hunter and Tia had a blast in Grandpa's pool!
Then we said our goodbyes and headed off to the mall, Walmart and A&W before going home to Vernon. We had a nice dinner with Leigh and Gracie, started packing and then off to a very cool sleep.

Sunday, August 08, 2010


Saturday was a cloudy day and we got off to a late start. We visited Grandpa and family in Kelowna, dropped Hunter off at Braeden's and then went to Gayle's surprise birthday party at the Country Club. Her birthday is not until November but it was a rare event to have her three babies all together at once; Leigh, Trish and Jill.
We overslept again Sunday morning but finally got off to visit Aunt Audrey and Uncle George.

Always a beautiful yard and we also had a beautiful brunch!
Said good bye and headed down the winding westside road to Kelowna and then back home on the highway. Lots of signs warning us of Bighorn sheep but we saw none.
Hunter fixed a scrumptious dinner of mac and cheese with toast. Now for dessert Grandma is fixing crepes. Back to Kelowna for the last time tomorrow morning and then we are off to Valemount Tuesday morning.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Waterslides again

With only a few days left I asked the kids what they wanted most to do: Waterslides! So we went. Hunter and I took the long slide down, we went early so the lines were not too bad. Note the smoke-shrouded Swan lake below.
Hayley loves the tube ride and yes, that is Grandma right behind her!
Hayley and Grandma yet again.

Hunter with Braeden and the twins.
Best picture of the day! Now off to buy school supplies.

Country Club

Hayley and I went to the Farmer's market early and then we all headed down to the Country Club to see the Williamsons. That is Hunter venturing in to the frigid waters of Kal Lake and only he made it into the water.
This is Clara, Trish's littlest one after having some bubble gum ice cream! Think she is in love with Hunter. Doesn't say much though. :-)

The snuggler took over babysitting duties from Aunty Leigh, but as the clouds rolled in we decided to head down to Kelowna to shop. Hayley did well with her shopping and then we all had dinner at Milestones. Got home late after a pretty full day.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Dinner with the girls

I worked all day while the children and Norma did some shopping and running around. Then they were off to the movies and I went to dinner with the girls then drinks at the pub. Didn't make it to the club....Work again tomorrow, smoke has cleared off so probably a nice day at the lake for the children.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010


Another smokey day, with over 400 fires now in the province it is not surprising. Went to Jenn's house to swim in the pool and barbecue. What a beautiful view down Kal lake.
Trish's two kept us all entertained. Aunty Leigh was caretaker as Trish went off to play soccer.

Even after hamburgers, peaches and ice cream it was back home for peaches, raspberries, blueberries and cream! Agriculture in BC will have a good year.


Finally caught the scoundrel eating Grandma's petunias! Hayley and Hunter scared her away.
There was a family of Quail on the badminton court this morning, the babies are quite curious, the parents are smarter.

Alpacas? at the farmers market.
Then we ran into almost the entire Williamson clan.

Peaches, nectarines, plums, apricots. Also bought raspberries, blueberries and corn, Grandma wouldn't let me buy anything else. Jenn visited in the afternoon then had dinner and fondue at Randy's.