As you saw in my last post I recently went on a trip to Scandinavia. I landed here at home at midnight our time and went straight to bed. Next morning we were up and over to the storage facility and brought the motorhome to our house to get ready to head out on the road. Off to get groceries and load up. One more nights sleep in my own bed and then off we went heading east to Alberta. It was one of those decisions we made because it was a short window of opportunity thing. If we didn’t go right then, it wouldn’t happen at all because we had company coming for my Dad’s 90th birthday celebration. After that was all over and family all left it would be getting too cold in Alberta to go. The roads could start getting dicey by then as snow could be flying. This is the thing about Canada, short window of opportunity for travel. We had 10 days available so we took off. Jet lag? What is that? I am one of those people that doesn’t require a lot of sleep to function. So I seem to do quite well with jetlag. It doesn’t seem to be a problem for me for the most part.
As far as the weather went, it was definitely fall in Alberta. We ran in to just about every type of weather you can name including snow. But on the whole the weather was good. It did get quite chilly at night and we did use our furnace.
We took a couple of days on the road to get to my brother’s place just north of Calgary. We overnighted in his yard and man oh man did our furnace in the motorhome run that night! We woke up to freezing cold and snow accumulating. We drove to Drumheller as we wanted to go to Tyrell Museum. Neither of us had been there in many years so it was a must see on this trip. This museum is really huge. So much to see and learn there. We spent a few hours there and then headed south to Dinosaur Provincial Park. We spent 3 nights there. This park is stunning! Scenery is awesome. There are walking loops you can go on, so on morning of our 2nd day the weather had improved so we set out. There is a 4 km loop which you can drive but we set out on foot. From that loop there are other loops you can walk down ranging from half a km to 2km or so. We took most of those loops as well. Two of them have fossils of dinosaurs that they left in the ground and put glass around for viewing it just as they found it. Views are excellent from the trails. That took most of the day. It warmed up during the day but was chilly at night.
After our stay there we headed back up north to a spot on the Red Deer River that hubby likes. We camped at a campground right on the river. It was the 3rd week of Sept and we had the whole campground to ourselves. We stayed 2 nights there. Greg took the walkie talkie and his rock hammer and set off down the river to do some rock/fossil hunting. While he did not unearth a dinosaur he did find a really nice agate treasure. I had a lovely day at the campsite. It was nice for me to have a day to just kick back with a book as I had been on the go for weeks and I knew we were going to be super busy when we got back to the island as well. This was our first opportunity to try out our new portable solar panels. I did move them around a few times as the sun moved across the sky. They worked perfectly and charged up our house batteries. So that was a good test for them. We had been using our furnace at night so having the ability to top up the batteries via solar during the day is a great thing as most of the spots we camp have no power hookups.
After that we started to head back towards the coast. On the way out to Alberta we had discovered a free camp spot on a river near Golden so we headed there and camped there. Greg had fun looking at rocks there. We took our time getting back and timed it so we could get a morning ferry back to the Island. It was a good trip. The more we get out and about in the motorhome, the more we are enjoying it. We do not get bored or tired of it. Even with having a fire ban all summer, we have still liked it, although we did miss being able to have a campfire in the evenings. We have discovered we like the rustic off the grid kind of old fashioned camping vs being in a RV park all lined up like sardines on a cement parking lot with tons of other RV’s. I also like the challenge of finding good free camping or failing that finding camping that is not too expensive. We find if we can do that we can get out and about for more time and more often. We spend more on gas but if we can keep other expenses down it all works for us. For instance we had free camping on all the 4 nights on the way out and way back. We driveway surfed at my brothers house for another night. Our camping on the river in Alberta was only $15.00 per night. We did pay $35.00 per night to stay in Dinosaur Provincial Park but we felt it was a special place so expense on that one was warranted. And it did have power which was nice as we were running our furnace at night. It was also nice to be there at the time we were (3rd week of Sept) because there were few people around. We kind of like that.
Where to next? We are considering heading south to Arizona right after Christmas and spending 3 months or so touring about down there. We will decide that in the next few weeks. Meanwhile I am researching that and planning a route etc. For me that is part of the fun!