Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Canada Day Long Weekend

Canada Day Long Weekend saw us head to Banff National Park.  We were not sure if this is where we would be or if we end up somewhere in Saskatchewan or just staying home.  The floods destroyed some roads from Banff to Calgary so it wasn’t  until Wednesday that they announced that they were would have at least some lanes open between the two.  We were eternally grateful for all of the hard work that went into opening the roads for us to enjoy our weekend!
Tree debris from the flood

The amount of destruction we saw from Flood 2013 was insane.  From ripped out trees, to rivers being rerouted, bodies of water that exist that didn’t before, missing islands in the water, bridges and banks eroded and washed away – it truly was a sight to see.  No photo will ever quite do it justice.
Despite all that had happened the previous week, it was great to be where we both wanted to be and where we were needed.  Nothing made me happier then seeing parking lots full of license plates from all over Canada and the United States but especially those from here in Alberta.  I chatted with a lady from the US and she was amazed at how far we had come in such a short time and she drove by High River and through Calgary and the road construction in Canmore and Banff.  It was awesome to hear!

Setting up the tent at the Lake Louise Campsite

Penelope using her “minoculars” to look at her bouncy ball….she’s such a goofball :)

The tent all set up and ready for a long weekend of camping!

We brought the strider bike for the girls to practice.  Finley just flies on this and her balance is improving daily.  She still is apprehensive about her regular bike with training wheels though.  She is convinced that her legs are not strong enough to do it.  Penelope is kinda getting the hang of the bike.  This was good practice for them.

After lunch on Friday, we headed to Moraine Lake to hike along the lakeshore.

Checking to see how cold the water really was.  They agreed it was very, very cold!
At the boardwalk on the other side of Moraine Lake
Back at the campsite – despite having a real fire, the girls had their pretend fire at their pretend camp.  It was pretty cute.  They collected rocks for their firewood and the bouncy ball was the fire and it was sitting on a pile of rocks.  Love their imagination!
Saturday morning we were hiking to Fairview Outlook which starts at Lake Louise.  Greg ran back to get the girls’ bunnyhugs.  I love getting photos here – especially early in the morning before it gets busy with tourists.
We took a wrong turn when hiking to Fairview Outlook and encountered A LOT of mud and mosquitos!!

The viewpoint on the way to the Lookout

Resting and getting a snack.  It was a tough hike.  All up hill to the top.  It was only 1.6K each way but it was tough on the girls and on me who hadn’t done a whole lot of uphill anything in a long time.  Thankfully my incision didn’t bother me at all!!

Chateau Lake Louise from the top of the Outlook. Pretty nice viewpoint!
After we finished this hike, we headed to Bow Summit. We hoped to see a bear or two but unfortunately we saw no animals at all!
Peyto Lake.  The viewpoint was called Bow Summit but the actual Bow Summit is much higher and more difficult to get to.

Bow Glacier – where Calgary gets all our water from!
We headed back to the campsite and awaited the arrival Grandpa Don.  The girls were excited to see him.
Grandpa Don arrived just as the baby Grizzly arrived.  This was right at our campsite.  Don’t worry – there was an electrified fence keeping us all separated.  This was done after a grizzly mauled 2 people here back in 1986.  We were all excited to finally see a bear!!

Penelope watching Grandpa start his charcoal barbeque thingy

It started to rain so out came the rain jackets and we all sat and ate supper under the tarp.

Once supper was finished, it was still raining and coming down rather hard so we stayed under the tarp and played 2 games of  Uno.  I watched and helped Penelope because I don’t particularly like UNO at all!

Finley won the first game and Penelope won the second.  Greg did not help them win but perhaps Grandpa Don did!

The rain finally stopped and we could venture out from under the tarp.  The girls played with the new princess yoyo’s that Grandpa Don brought!
Sunday saw us head to Yoho National Park in BC – it’s just across the border and just a short drive from Lake Louise Campsite.  Our first stop was Wapta Falls.

A good portion of it was muddy and gross.  Three different times we had to climb over fallen trees.

Wapta Falls

Hanging out at Takakkaw Falls

Takakkaw Falls – this sprays you as  you approach it.  It was cold!!
As we were leaving Takakkaw Falls and heading back to our campsite, we saw a train heading in the same direction.  We were all excited that we were going to finally see a train go through the spiral tunnel and we did.  It was so awesome!!!!!  We all loved it!!
Train going through the spiral tunnel!!!!

The final night of camping saw us blowing bubbles and just hanging out.  Ever since shortly after we left Takakkaw Falls, Finley had complained that her ear hurt.  She had a bit of a cold so we thought that combined with the elevation caused her ear to not pop.  We tried to get her to do various things with no luck.  We gave her some tylenol and she slept for an hour and woke up crying in pain.  Greg took her to the hospital in Banff and turns out that she had an ear infection. The ear infection had been forming and going up in elevation prevented her ear from draining properly which is why all the pain.  She was given some Amoxicillin and morphone at the hospital for the pain. The doctor gave us a vile of morphine to give Finley the following morning just in case she was in pain.  Thankfully she wasn’t.  As I type this, she is finishing her final day of antibiotics and hasn’t been bothered by her ear in the last 3 days.

The morning after being diagnosed with her ear infection.  She was in good spirits!!
We had a great weekend away and were happy to have Grandpa Don join us for some of it!  Hope everybody had a safe and great Canada Day Weekend!!!

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