Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Alberta Day 1 - 17th June

On our first full day in Canada we ventured out into the Rocky Mountains along the main East-West Trans-Canadian Highway (Number 1).  We headed into Canmore, then onto Banff where we had lunch before heading further into the mountains in search of lake Louise and Lake Moraine and the Valley of the 10 Peaks, that tower over the crystal clear  glacier water.  The view took our breath away and after the torrential downpour with accompanying thunder and lightening in Banff, the sun shone and it really was spectacular! 
We were lucky enough to see this little fellow at Lake Moraine a young male Grizzly beer, just grazing grass near the car park, completely unmoved or disinterested with the 50 or so lenses pointed at him.  He looked up occasionally but decided dandelion's were a better option than tourists!  Just as well as they can run at 60Km/hr and with huge claws they obviously need to be treated with respect.
We headed back to Calgary via the Bow Valley Parkway which runs through the National Park and is a stunning drive, twisty roads, fabulous views and probably the longest train I have seen!  This train was  empty heading East to the Potash mines in Saskatchewan.  It was about 170 carriages long and was doing  about 60Km/Ha. There could have been over 10,000 T of Potash fertiliser on the train when full, with a farm gate value of over £3.5 million!
The Dodge Charger was just the beast for taming the twisty roads!  No number plates on the front though which we thought was strange.
We rounded the evening off down at the local pub with our Nuffield Scholar host Ryan Bonnett, his girlfriend Helaina and room mate Scotty.  Early start tomorrow to surrender the Charger, get a local mobile phone and head out East into some fields.

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