Sunday, June 10, 2018

Day 8 We finish Alberta and start British Columbia

Man, these provinces are huge.  Three days so far in Alberta.  Well, today we will cross over into British Columbia.  We are up early again and make ready to head out.  We stop at the office and use their hose to top off our fresh water tank.  We don't drink out of this tank.  We buy jugs of water for drinking and coffee and use the tank water for cleaning.  Who knows what evil lurks in that tank?

Our first section this morning has us traveling about 120 miles to Grand Prairie, AB.  We don't go far into the town itself, but just go around the southwest corner.  There is a Walmart there along with most anything else you need.  We are good to go and skip the Walmart.  Lots of red lights and traffic, but soon we are back in the wilderness.

From Grand Prairie, we head next to Dawson Creek, BC.  This is the official start of the Alaskan Highway.  We are eager to get to the start of the road to Alaska.  The trip so far in Canada has been outstanding.  Alberta has some beautiful places to visit, we hope to return someday to explore a bit more in depth.

The drive to Dawson Creek is only about 80 miles and we are there before we know it.  First stop is the Walmart to resupply.  We didn't want to go to the Walmart in Grand Prairie as it was way on the other side of town.  We get what we need and head for the famous sign where everyone stops for their picture.  Here is ours.

There was a few motorcyclists there getting their picture taken and I asked the woman doing so if she would mine taking ours.  She agreed and asked if I would reciprocate, and naturally being an easy going type, I agreed to do so.  Pictures were then taken and I got to talking to the husband of the picture taker, Eva.  The husbands name was Jon, pronounced like "yawn".  They were traveling in an older Class A, gasoline powered with a scooter on the back.  They did not stay in campgrounds but preferred to camp along the side of the roads.  Nothing wrong with that, if that is your thing.  We find it too noisy and we tend to worry about unwanted visitors during the night.  We met up with Eva and Jon several times during our trip.  They were from Vermont and are a nice couple.

As we left the Dawson Creek sign area, I remembered that we forgot to get some beer, so turned around and went back to the liquor store to stock up.  You can buy liquor in Provincial or private stores.  This was a private store if I remember right.  We go in and start perusing their offerings.  In addition to the normal swill like Bud and Miller (why bother) they had quite a selection of craft beers.  We chose a sampler pack and checked out.  $38 CDN for a 12 pack of beer.  They nearly had to call an ambulance for me.  The tax alone on that beer was $7...ACK!  Oh well, it's only money.  We climb back in the van and head west leaving Alberta in the rear view mirror (metaphorically, as we don't have a rear view mirror!).

It is still early in the day and we are prepared to put some miles behind us.  We end up driving another 170 miles and stop at Buckinghorse Provincial Park.  Located right on the river, no hookups or flush toilets.  A picnic table and pit toilets.  The cost is $20 CDN and there are only a few people here. We choose a back-in spot next to the river and start to settle in.  There are two sections to the campground.  We didn't even go back into the second section as we had our choice of some really nice spots in the front section.  Almost as soon as we got everything setup, the flood gates open up and RVs are literally pouring in off the road looking for a spot for the night.  Soon, just about every spot is taken along with some spots that weren't really campsites.  There was a large Class A from Maine with a toad and they went to the back section and just pulled over in the large turn around area.

We get out our chairs and a selection of cold beer and enjoy the warmth of the sun tempered by a cooling breeze.  We can hear and see the river rushing by.  A fine end to a fine day.  There was a small caravan of people there pulling Casita travel trailers.  One of them had an LSU plate on the front of his truck, so I had to go talk to them.  They are on their way to Alaska as well and are taking their time about it.  They have reservations in Denali NP for 7/7/18.  That's like 3 weeks away!  I don't know what they are going to do with themselves, but apparently, they are going really slow.

Pretty soon it is time for bed.  The sun is still doing it's thing and it doesn't get dark at all.  Sunset, for what it's worth, is at 11:30pm and sunrise at 3:30am.  Short "night".  No matter what time you might wake up, it is light out.  It doesn't seem to bother us though, we are sleeping good and are very comfortable in our tiny RV.

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