Alberta: Wild Rose Country

Travel Diary

We left British Columbia after a great night in Yoho National Park and we entered into Alberta through Banff National Park. We had a wonderful time exploring the park and seeing the ever so famous Lake Louise. It was one of the most beautiful drives we have ever done. Turns out we weren't finished with beautiful drives though!

By driving you really get to appreciate the expansiveness of the country and the amount of wilderness.
We saw a few people on bicycles here and there and the inside joke became saying "Bike across Canada!" every time we saw someone biking.
I think if I was biking out here I'd be thinking about running into grizzly bears.
We were pretty glad to be taking this route since our original idea was to drive to Calgary and then go north on the highway to Edmonton. This is a much more scenic route. 
We had checked with a park ranger on what the options were as far as routes to Edmonton. The ranger said that driving north to the Saskatchewan River crossing and then towards Rocky Mountain House. We went past all these beautiful lakes and really enjoyed the drive.
After a fairly good but rainy time camping at Rocky Mountain House National Parkwe drove towards Fort Saskatchewan to visit our cousin and niece. 

The landscape was definitely starting to flatten out a lot.
We enjoyed visiting and it was also great to have a break from camping for a short while. 
We got to see their new house and it's a nice area with some walking trails nearby. There were rabbits and deer all over the place! We might have seen more wildlife in our cousin's neighbourhood than during our visit to Elk Island National Park. We also got a very comfortable bed to sleep in, which was great after a week of sleeping the Wanderlust Jimmy.

The weather was pretty fantastic too. It was hot and sunny whereas it was most likely raining or something back on Vancouver Island.
Walking the dog is always fun, so we took her out to the park.
Alberta has a lot of new houses all over the place and new developments from what we could see.
There was a lake which was man made and we were right near the Saskatchewan River. It's almost as if we were trying to see how far we could follow the Saskatchewan River.
Some of the new houses they are building these days are massive. I'm sure all our friends back in the UK would be shocked at how huge some of these places are. Pretty impressive garages on these houses.
After a great visit we were back on the road and we made it to Lloydminster and the Saskatchewan border. Lloydminister is the only Canadian city on a provincial border.
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And then on our way back through Alberta after going back east we took a different route.
We tried to keep backtracking on this road trip to a minimum.


The landscape in southern Alberta was pretty flat but the weather was not too hot to handle. Sleeping at the Walmart in Lethbridge was easy. It's funny that we were so unsure about the idea of sleeping at Walmart at first on this road trip.
Then it became preferable in a lot of places because of the low cost and the convenience. Our Walmart sleeps were some of our best sleeps because it is quiet at a Walmart parking lot.
You would think that sleeping at a camp site would be more quiet that Walmart but sadly this is not always the case.
The truck was still running well. We were keeping an eye on the oil levels. We were under the impression that we had a coolant leak at the beginning on the trip based on what the mechanic was saying but this seemed to not be the case.
We've just been making sure the oil is topped up and checking it every day or so.
Waiting until the gas tank gets to half a tank and then filling up is what we've been doing on this whole road trip for the most part.
Generally what people do is keep track and figure out what their vehicles fuel economy is by measuring kilometres per litre (or miles per gallon or miles per litre). We haven't been keeping track of how many kilometres we can travel on a tank of gas but we have noticed that we can generally travel about 3 hours before our gas gauge gets to half a tank. 
If half a tank is 3 hours of driving then we presume that a full tank is about 6 hours. Google maps gives an estimate drive time. Measuring distance and driving time is a Vancouver Island thing as we tend to describe how far something is by drive time on Vancouver Island.
We stopped by Frank Slide in Alberta which was not far off the highway. We were getting hungry and needed a quick rest.
Here we are taking a happy selfie with Frank Slide, Canada's deadliest rock slide.
There was a little trail to follow and an interpretive centre to learn more about the deadly rock slide.
The rock slide destroyed a town called Frank which is why it's called Frank Slide.

This site is something we've never heard of before and part of the fun of doing a road trip.
That is a lot of rocks.
When you are on a road trip you have the freedom to stop when you see a sign for Frank Slide.

It's important to break up the driving a little as well you you don't get exhausted from sitting in the car that long.
We could tell we were getting closer to BC since we were getting more and more mountains.

We had a great time in Alberta on our way east and our way west. Stayed tuned for more on our road trip across Canada including our time in Saskatchewan.

Comments

  1. Canada is so scenically abundant. I drove from Calgary up through Banff to Jasper National Park and then back to Vancouver a few years ago. It was some of the most breathtaking beautiful scenery I have ever seen.

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  2. Thanks so sharing such an indepth road trip guide. You're right this was such a scenic route! I haven't done a big roadtrip before but I'm desperate to see Canada so maybe this is a good way to do it!

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    1. There are certain things that are much easier to see with access to a car in Canada. You don't need to drive all the way across the country but a car is handy.

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  3. wow what a beautiful road trip ! I love how the landscape was changing from mountains to empty fields! Banff National Park seems like a perfect place to visit! I haven't been in Canada yet but I hope Ill get there one day as its one of the most wonderful places I've seen ( on photos so far of course ;) )

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  4. Alberta is paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts, isn't it? We haven't been to Canada yet, but when we go, the itinerary is bound to revolve around the national parks. Dreaming of a camper van...

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  5. Love driving around quaint roads like this. I would prefer a bike as well to explore the wilderness at a slow pace. Love the route. So many scenic views along the way.

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    1. A bike would be cool. Don't run into any grizzly bears though.

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  6. Seems like a great road trip with beautiful landscape on the sides. I haven't been to Canada yet but the photos here show exactly how I want my future trip to Canada to be. Thank you for sharing :)

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  7. Its a stunning highway! I'd love to drive through this! You're right, I'll be worried too of running into a bear if I was cycling! Sleeping at walmart parking lot? I've never heard of it, but sounds like an awesome option!

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    1. Haha. Yeah Walmart is an interesting option.

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  8. Canada is so beautiful, I have never been lucky enough to make a road trip through it though. You're right about breaking up the journey, it can get tiring driving and Canada is so huge. I've never seen Saskatchewan before so I'm looking forward to seeing that part of the trip.

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    1. Yeah driving really makes you appreciate the size of the country.

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  9. Alberta is my dream, Those long mountain roads are giving me such road trip envy right now!

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