DAY 45-55 Back to Seattle, USA (in a nutshell)

Good-Bye Canada

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Good-Bye Canada

Back to Banff……

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Possible new Camper…. Just kidding Oso!

The throngs of people in Banff helped with my decision to head back to Seattle.  Of course heading to Seattle means the next phase of the trip will be starting… the southern half and I’m itchy to get this show on the road.
It took us about 5 days to make it back to Seattle from Banff.  It’s really just a straight 9 hour trip but my plan was to travel south through Glacier National Park in Montana, visit Sherry and her family of pooches across Idaho and then back to Seattle.

Just out of Banff National Park we stayed the night down a long rough dirt road where the girls had an opportunity to run with the truck, had a quick worrisome but safe encounter with a black bear and spent our last night under the Canadian sky.

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CLICK picture above to see running poodles… Whoa Hoo

 

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CLICK me to see a short movie clip to get an idea of how the camper reacts to bumpy roads….

Oso and Poos

The next day………Plans for a trip through Glacier were thwarted when Oso had another flat tire.  After traveling out of my way to find a town with a garage large enough to do the work I was told that they didn’t have the correct tire.  I had to decide whether to wait 4 days for them to order one or drive another 100 miles into Montana.  Since the flat was one of the inner duallies, I chose the second option and hoped that we’d make it.  It was another long white knuckled day of driving before we arrived in Kalispell, Montana.

Since all the tires on the truck (6 of them… Ouch) needed to be replaced before heading to the lower America’s I opted to have them all replaced (since we were in tax-free Montana).  On top of that I decided it was a good idea to have two identical spares.  It was explained to me that on a dually, it’s not a good idea to have a bald tire next to a heavy new tread.  Of course one small adjustment lead to 3 days for ordering tires and adding a front mount set-up for the 8th tire.  Nothing is simple.  I took the extra days to rest up, shop for needed travel items and catch up on the blog.

Back to Civilization

Dairy Queen!!

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So, on Day 55 of our trip returned to Seattle:

a happy truck, a rested Me and 3 bored poodles. An anti-climatic end to nearly 2 months in Canada but a tranquil omen for the impending trip south.

Wendy and Joe Wahman’s…

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Honeys We’re Home!!!

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Day 39: Glacial Milk and Flour

My fascination with glaciers started during my summit of Chimborazo, a 20,000 some foot mountain in Ecuador, in 1991.  I’ll never forget how intrigued I was with the ice formations that stool higher than my head and the wide gaping crevices.

Click here to read more about this mountain

Due to it’s position on the equatorial bulge, Chimborazo is the highest peak if measured from the center of the earth.

After that climb I began reading all that i could about glaciers; their formation, history and personalities.  Yes, Glaciers are fascinating characters.

Here’s a great site to learn a little more about these beasties:

Click here to learn more about Glaciers

Click here to learn more about Glaciers


 

In the mean time here are a few tidbits:

1.  Largest glacier in the world

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Courtesy of antarcticglaciers.org Click to read more about this glacier.

The Lambert-Fisher Glacier in Antarctica, is 250 miles long and approximately 60 miles wide (roughly the size of Rhode Island). It’s a whopping 8202 feet deep (roughly the height of Mount Shasta) and drains 8% of the Antarctic ice sheet.


2.  Some glaciers “Gallop.”

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Click here to read a famous story about a Galloping Glacier.

A galloping glacier can advance many feet a day.  The Hubbard Glacier (in Alaska) once moved at a rate of 32 feet a day for months.  You can witness movement when a glacier “calves.”


3.  Glaciers are retreating; a worrisome sign for scientists.

Image provided by Jeffrey Kargel, USGS/NASA JPL/AGU, through the NASA Earth Observatory.

Click for a great article on glaciers and global warming. Image provided by Jeffrey Kargel, USGS/NASA JPL/AGU, through the NASA Earth Observatory.


4.  Some glaciers “Calve.”

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Click here to see a calving in action

This is how icebergs are born. It’s the process of ice breaking off the terminus of a glacier into a body of water.


5.  Some glaciers “Hang.”

Click to learn more about Hanging Glaciers. Photo by Mierk Schwab

Click to learn more about Hanging Glaciers. Thank you Mierk Schwabe for the use of your photo.

Click here to check out more   Mirk Schwabe  photos. 

These are seen in alpine areas and result due to the angle of the mountainside.  As the glacier moves it cascades down as avalanches and icefalls.


6.  Glaciers have Ice Worms.

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Picture courtesy of Seattle Times. Click on image to read story.

  Surprisingly, there are worms that live in the depths and surfaces of glaciers.  You wouldn’t think anything could grow in such a harsh and desolate climate.


7.  Glaciers make MILK and FLOUR.

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Glacier flour. Click here to see a quick video.

A very fine sediment created by the grinding of glacial ice against rock flows from the glacier.  It’s a powder as fine as chalk and it stays suspended in the run off water as it travels from the foot of the glacier all the way down rivers and into lakes.  The Milk gives the water a, well, milky appearance and in lakes it can create a soft turquoise color.

The Poodles and I had a great time hiking along a milk and flour filled river.  It was fascinating to see the clear streams entering the main milky river and how the confluences mixed.

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TO BE CONTINUED⇒⇒⇒⇒⇒⇒⇒

Day 38-40 My Pot Of Gold

We arrived in Jasper National Park late in the afternoon.

First stop was down town to get some groceries and fill up with gas.  We found ourselves in a world of RVs… sadly realizing that we were no long queens of our own domain.  It was literally a sea of bright and shiny RVs  packing the street, lining every inch of the curb.  Renting campers must be a popular past time for Canadians as it was clear that most of these vehicles were brand new, very clean and most were label with a large orange maple leaf with the slogan “Adventure Canada!” or “CanaDream.”  I could have sworn that people were looking at my beat up and filthy Oso with distaste.

Can you find Oso in the picture below?

WHERE'S OSO?

WHERE’S OSO?

A little closer…..

WASH ME

WASH ME

From town we headed into the park and down the Icefield Parkway.

It was extremely gusty at the parking lot where I hoped to spend the night.  There were very few people around, and since there was only one other camper in the lot, I felt free to let the poodles off leash to explore the rocky outcrops near by.

There we were surprised by some cloud breaks

and a special rainbow treat.

GOLD AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW…. EUREKA!

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WINDY, RAINY, SLEETY AND COLD…. BUT WHAT A VIEW

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BOING BOING BOING…. HOPPING DOWN THE BUNNY TRAIL!

 

 

 Tomorrow we go for a river hike….