Off we go! Out of Tatlayoko and across Canada. After phoning to check in with Lewis Stiles in Saskatoon, we leave Williams Lake. Pretty uneventful getting to Blue River, except for the grey clouds that keep following us. With the promise of rain, we decide to stay in a little chalet. It has about as much space as the tent, but comes with internet, kids and teepees (see well-loved bear below). We biked to the “Oldest continuously-running Grocery Store in BC”, complete with crotchety calico cat.
September 1, 2011: Blue River to Edson
Well, it didn’t rain much, but boy is it cold out! We warmed up by biking for a couple of hours around Jasper--sneaking through the Lodge golf course to complete the loop. loved the community garden idea--right on main street. On to Edson and motel time (our ground sheet isn’t big enough for that kind of water).
September 2, 2011: Edson to North Battleford
Alright--let’s go stalk Nick’s new house in Edmonton. Promising location (close to NAIT and airport), though not yet “upgraded neighbourhood” with spectacular 2-car garage. We spent a lovely morning visiting with B and toured her family’s printing operation. Very high-tech! We arrived in N. Battleford just in time to spend 1/2 hour in the museum pondering the prairie fall-out from the end of the buffalo. Would it rain? We decided to camp out anyhow and spent sunset walking Fort Battleford’s perimeter.
Our accomodation is a bit rustic, but it is a bed.
September 3, 2011: North Battleford to Saskatoon
Many photos of prairie sky and we arrive at Lewis and Marilla’s house in Saskatoon. We expect to stay for tea/coffee as they are busy with a friend’s wedding, but end up staying with our amazing host and hostess overnight. During that time we are treated to wonderful food, conversation and a walk through Lewis’ commuting trail. Saskatoon is a beautiful city--especially with the riverside trails and parks. A visit to a real “Buffalo Jump” completes this excursion.
September 4, 2011: Saskatoon to Portage La Prairie
More lovely prairie landscape, but now it is starting to get very flat and very wet. By fluke, we choose the right “Creekside Campground”--the other is closed due to floods for another couple of years. This one is a seasonal refuge for people from Winnipeg. Some of those motor homes have gardens and gazebos with them. The water table still looks dangerously high.
September 5, 2011: Portage La Prairie to Ignace
More gorgeous skylines and old Ukrainian-Greek Orthodox Churches. Okay tonight, we need another blanket, but not one with a “Star Wars” theme! Warm at last, we stay in a lovely family-run campground on a lake. It has fabulously clean showers and bathrooms. Funny the things you notice. The extra blanket works wondrously well.
September 6, 2011: Ignace to Geraldton
Great day spent in Fort William. Hard to believe there is a furred animal left in Canada when you see the amount of hides that came through this place. We have this camping thing down to a fine art and it takes no time to have tent up and dinner ready. And--we are still warm.
September 7, 2011: Geraldton to Kirkland Lake
Saw lots of Gold mines driving through the Kirkland area, looks pretty prosperous.
What a crazy hunt for accomodation--we drove much further than we wanted to and finally found a place to stay at Swan Lake (aka mosquito swamp). Luckily the scenery is lovely and will be even better when the fall colours are out. Were rewarded with a great sunset.