Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
Rugged beauty prevails in the Canadian Rocky mountains. My best friends from the west sent me an airline ticket to visit them in Alberta. My wife had passed away a few months prior and they thought it would do me good to get out of the house. My Buddy Dave and I were going to rough-it in the wilderness of the rugged British Columbia Rocky mountains.
I arrived at the Calgary airport and my buddy Dave was waiting for me. We had about a one hour drive to his home in Canmore Alberta. The plan was to spend a couple of days at their home and then head for their cabin high in the Kootney mountains of British Columbia. Dave’s wife Mary would be out 4 days later along with daughter Julie, grandchildren Benjamin, Maggie and Scruffy the dog.
We had an 8 hour drive from their Canmore home to the cabin. Although we travelled the highways of some of the most scenic vistas in Canada, our early departure was in darkness. I wasn’t too worried, I knew I would see the panoramas on the return trip home. Daylight had arrived three quarters of the way into our trip and I was treated with some awesome scenery. We had to cross Arrow Lake by ferry and we made it with 5 minutes to spare.
I was pleased it was daylight for the 20 kilometre drive up into the mountains on a rustic logging road. We were patting ourselves on the back for making good time. With only a quarter mile to go, we were stopped dead and facing a landslide. We weren't the only ones affected. If we couldn't get in, neighbors couldn't get out. They would bring in some equipment to deal with the problem later in the day, meanwhile we hand-bombed our luggage over and they drove us down into the cabin.
We had to shovel our way into the cabin from snow that slides off the steel roof onto the deck. It wasn’t easy shoveling because it had compacted and froze. Anyway in we go and start a fire and it wasn’t long before we were warm and toasty. Dave had many chores to do to ready the cabin for comfort, haul water, haul wood, get batteries charged for lights etc. He also had to fire up the old jeep to haul his work boat to the lake. It started like a charm after sitting all winter, After the road was opened the local good old boys drove his Ford down to the cabin.
I was pleased to see Mary and the kids arrive 4 days later, I was tired of playing Mr. Mom and felt a need for a woman’s touch. Mary is special, she is a ball of energy, great cook, loves the outdoors and after I showed her once how to fillet a fish, never had to do that chore again. Dave is a lucky man.
Julie and kids left to return home a day before us. She was concerned with getting out, bad weather was in the forecast. That mudslide had created some serious road conditions and rain was imminent, it would only get worse. We fished our last day in the rain, of course, Mary was the hands down winner in the fish catching category. We had to practice catch and release because the daily limit was one. After a good nights sleep, a good breakfast and a visit to the neighbors to say good bye, we were barely able make it through a serious mud hole. Other cottage owners would becoming in for the weekend it would only get more challenging. I spent another 3 days back in Canmore before heading to Calgary for my return flight home. Dave and Mary are such gracious hosts and I would miss them all, the kids and Scruffy but I also was feeling a little home sick for my own family. I know, I will return to beautiful Canmore Alberta, fall is always beautiful there.
I have installed a player showing photos of my adventure. My trip to the Rocky Mountains of Canada.