We left home on June 17, 2008 headed for Alaska. Our first night was spent in Hickory Run State Park, PA amid the Mountain Laurel blossoms.
A call from brother CR caused us to change plans and arrange for flight for Sally to Florida ASAP. A AAA office in Pennsylvania arranged for a flight from Cleveland to Daytona Beach for early Thursday and we took a campsite near the airport for Wednesday night. After Sally boarded the plane, Bill went on alone to Michigan to visit our friends the Klepps in Birmingham, MI and then on to Mackinac City and over the bridge to the “Upper Peninsula” and to Sault Ste Marie and the Soo Locks.
Next on to Whitefish Point on Lake Superior and the scene of the sinking of the “Edmund Fitzgerald”
Bill spent the next two nights at Tahquamenon Falls, a beautiful park that includes a charming restaurant. The falls are especially picturesque and an easy walk from the parking lot.
Barbara Novick joined up at Tahquamenon Falls and we proceeded west to Wisconsin stopping off at Seney National Wildlife Refuge to tour the area.
On June 23 we picked up Barbara’s son, Drew in Minnesota and on June 24 we visited the Mall of America which is every bit as huge as is advertised. When we felt we had enough of consumerism we headed NW to North Dakota and crossed over at Fargo.
The only picture I have is this bodacious Bison:
June 25th found us at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in northwestern North Dakota. The “Bad Lands” are certainly that.
We spent the next night at Fort Peck, Montana, where several dinosaur fossils were found. It is an Army Corps of Engineers site and included a fine information hall with models of the actual findings on display. There is the largest hydraulically filled earthen dam here across the Missouri River that forms a recreational lake.
A long drive got us to the Great Falls, MT airport to pick up Sally from her very long flight from Florida. We stayed at a KOA in Great Falls that night. The next morning we headed for Glacier National Park, MT and thus began our exposure to real mountains.
The photos from Glacier National Park could fill an album by themselves. Suffice it to say that the scenery was spectacular. The Road to The Sun was only accessible for part of the way so we went as far as possible from the East and then went around to the West entrance and went as far as we could in that direction.
On to Kootenay NP, BC for the Paint pots and the Spiral RR tunnels.
Here you can see the locomotive emerge from the tunnel while some of the cars have yet to enter!.
A short distance from our campsite in Kootenay NP was the magnificent Taka kaka Falls. I don’t know what it is about falling water, but it attracts us like bears to honey.
We drove several miles up a twisting gravel road to view a mountain and glacier named after a heroic WW I British Army nurse, Edith Cavell.
On the way to Maligne Canyon from Jasper, we stopped to admire this gem: Medicine Lake.
Maligne Canyon is noted for its narrowness and deepness.
Later that day (July 1) we were in Banff for the annual Canada Day parade. Not only the whole town, but most of the vacationers turned out to witness a real home town celebration.
Fireworks followed, but not until 11:00 PM as that is when it was dark enough to see them!
Of course no trip to Banff or Jasper would be complete without a stop at beautiful Lake Louise.
Next was Athabasca Falls that cascades over the rocks and roars through a narrow canyon on its way down stream. The falling water attraction again.
A truly beautiful and very well maintained campsite awaited us at Kleanza Creek Campground along the Skeena River leading us to Prince Rupert and the Alaska Marine Highway Ferry.
Next we get on the Alaska Marine Highway for Petersburg, Alaska.