Dat 11 - Medicine Hat to Banff

Trip Start Aug 20, 2008
Trip End Sep 23, 2008

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Where I stayed
Ross Creek Campground

Flag of Canada  , Alberta,
Sunday, August 31, 2008

Although it had been a long and tiring day before it was not a restful night for some.   We were quite close to the Trans Canada Railway line and apparently (according to Chrissy), there were noisy night trains at 0100, 0200, 0400 and 0500.   This might not be too bad, but these trains tend to be nearly 1km long and take quite a while to pass.  We had a early start and where greeted with a sunny but windy day.  Another penalty of choosing a campsite late in the day is that you do not always get all the conveniences you require.   In this case, although we had outstanding WiFi, there were no toilets or showers and so we had to rely on the rather cramped facilities on board and, even worse, pump out after - enough said.
We set off for town early and stopped in at a Car Wash to clean off the splattered bugs from the front of the RV.   The bugs were not too bad, it was the hoards of flies that feasted on their remains that were the nuisance - they must have been able to fly well in excess of 100km per hour, because every time we stopped, there they were!   Another Tim Horton's before setting off West again, passing by BATUS, the British Army Training Centre, just outside Medicine Hat.   Lunch was spent in a Road House were Chrissy feasted on Dry Ribs - she was getting quite a taste for them.
Soon our excitement rose as we gained out first sight of Calgary and the Rockies that provide the backdrop.   We did not pause in Calgary - we realised we had lost the taste for big cities and were not enjoying our first taste of traffic jams for several days.  The one unusual spectacle about Calgary were the RVs, that were all over the place - seemingly gathering for the dash to the Rockies.    The drive to the Rockies was awe inspiring, each time we dropped into a dip or went into a hidden wood or bend as the mountains reappeared they grow appreciably more and more impressive, from spots on the horizon to become towering giants.   We had planned to overnight at Canmore, however they had no space due to Labor Day Weekend holiday, so we pressed on to Banff and stayed in the National Park Campsite called Tunnel Mountain.   It turned out to be a much better choice, although we were somewhat alarmed by the repeated warnings about Grizzly Bears.
After supper we walked into the town centre and were surprised by the number of visitors - it is a real tourist trap.   However, the setting is outstanding and it was well worth the trip.
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