With the rain and floods in Alberta, we are about two days behind our planned itinerary. To make up some time, we decided to change our route away from travelling to Vancouver Island via Clearwater and Whistler. Instead we decided to push hard and drive the 450 kms from Jasper to Kamloops and tomorrow, drive a slightly larger distance to Tofino on Vancouver Island. This should put us back on our original plan by tomorrow night.
Today’s trip meant back tracking over the same route as we travelled to Jasper a few days ago. For the first part of the day, we drove trough mountainous country passing Mt Robson again. It was pretty much covered in cloud, so the view that we had the other day was much better.
As we pushed along, we didn’t discover any really outstanding features other than a little lake on a short detour that was quite scenic.
One of the things that we did notice were the number of little wildflowers that were out by the roadside. It was easy to look across a grassy area and not see much, but a closer inspection always revelled at least half a dozen varieties of little flowers of one colour or another.
Some were tiny, and others were quit large and splendid. It appears to me that this white flower which grows prolifically in some of the more damp areas is similar to some form of native parsnip, or Queen Anne’s Lace. On the other hand it is probably a total different species and all my attempts at making comparisons are very inappropriate.
As we got closer to Kamloops, the country opened out to grazing country and farmland. I found this old barn and tried to make a landscape photo out of it with only limited success.
We had a bit of a surprise when a bear ran across the road right in front of us and started munching on some plants that were growing near a telegraph pole on the other side of the road. The roadside verges were commonly covered in little flowers.
We arrived in Kamloops by 3.30 pm and did some shopping at the mall across the road from the hotel. Kamloops was first settled by fur traders and later by people travelling west to the Canadian gold fields in the 1800’s. They were beaten by the distance and hardships and settled in the area as pioneer famers. The town is now a very large railway town. All our research shows that, from a tourists perspective, it has nothing at all going for it, other than place to break up there long distance from Vancouver to the Rockies. I asked the hotel receptionist what the outstanding features of the town were,and when she answered ‘the coffee shop on 14th street’, she proved my point entirely.
We are staying at the Holiday Inn which has reasonable accommodation, but very ordinary food. Over half of the itms on the dinner menu were various forms of hamburger. We are really over them – they are the easiest and fastest food to find and even the ones in the deluxe restaurants have now become boring. Hopefully, we will find more variety as we travel further west, but I do have to say that North American food is generally as unappealing as is the coffee. Jill just refuses to drink it now. She would rather go without anything, instead of drinking tasteless brewed coffee.
Tomorrow, we will be up early to continue our trip to Vancouver Island.