The Wandering Tops

The Wandering Tops

17 May, 2015

Jasper

Started to rain in the morning so did not attempt the Skytram ride to view Jasper - instead stood on the Observation Deck and took photo (much warmer!).  Had a look around Jasper which is a lovely quaint village.


View of Jasper from Observation Deck

Jasper

Jasper

The only bear we have seen so far - at least you can cuddle this one!

From Jasper we headed to Maligne Lake (approx 48kms) as we had heard from our daughter it was worth the trip - and we were not disappointed.  On the way we stopped at Hanging Valley (meeting of 2 glaciers Athabasca & Maligne), spent time at Maligne Canyon which has a real wow factor. During warm weather, run off and glacial melt flood Medicine Lake; in the fall the lake drains via sinkholes at the north end, like an unplugged bathtub.  Following a limestone cave system, the water surfaces around the area of Maligne Canyon.  This is believed to be one of the world's largest underground drainage system. They had two bear skins and skulls on display, one grizzly and the other a black bear.  The Ranger told us the largest bear seen in this area was 700lbs.  The grizzly skin on display was killed because he was breaking into vehicles!  The walk around the canyon was spectacular - certainly did not worry about the drizzly conditions.  



Scenery on way to Maligne Canyon in Jasper National Park

Grizzly bear killed for breaking into vehicles!


Maligne Canyon




Maligne Lake was still partly frozen but once again the scenery was spectacular. The Lake was discovered by famous guide & outfitter Donald 'Curly' Phillips in 1911. In the summer this is a very popular place and would be filled with people canoeing, boating & fishing.  World famous Spirit Island is situated here and is a popular tour destination.

Maligne Lake Boathouse built in 1928 and is a provincially registered historic site.


Maligne Lake


Headed back to Jasper to begin our designated journey to McBride, so Maligne Lake was a slight detour but well worth the journey.  Back on Highway again passed Mt Robson (second highest peak entirely in British Columbia) before completing the day's journey at Beaver View, McBride.  On arrival we were greeted with hot dogs and a warm fire although did not stay long to enjoy as evening became cold and windy.



Mt Robson

Typical scenery along the way


From McBride we followed the Fraser River along to Prince George, stopping on the way at the Ancient Forest where we had a pleasant walk along the boardwalk viewing BC inland rain forest.

 



Stopped on way at Purden Lake and was nearly taken away by mozzies!  They said they breed them big up here.  Fuelled up in Prince George before heading along Highway 97 following The Crooked River on our left hand side.  Stopped at McLeod Lake (Hels family name) before stopping for the night at Tundyah, right by the lake. Not a lot of space as it was a long weekend and everyone was out camping.  A goup of Canadians who camped nearby gathered some wood for us so had a roaring fire and great company to complete the evening.  Trying to get used to the daylight hours as it does not get dark until very late - also warned about bears as a man had been killed by a grizzly around this campground!!

Sunrise at Tundyah Lake

Friendly Canadians brought back firewood for us

They have some big rigs over here and boys toys!!  He had great joy in telling us his Motor Home was 41ft6" long.

Reluctantly left the next day heading for Lynx Creek RV Park - not long after leaving we stopped to clean the windscreen in a small pull off area when we were greeted by a wolf.  It stayed its distance just watching Geoff - took a photo and was told by a local that it was probably a young one and we were very lucky to see it. Still haven't seen our bear but a wolf is good! Called into Bijoux Falls which was great and continued on Highway 97 following the Pine River which was flowing extremely fast.


Wolf


Stopped at Chetwynd which hosts the Chainsaw Carving Competition, and viewed winners of previous years competitions on display.  Very clever to be able to create these works of art, and all done with chainsaws.





Australian 2nd prize winner 2014


Back on Highway 29 headed to Hudson's Hope stopping for a wander around Moberly Lake which is a very popular camping spot.  Absolutely amazed at the size of the Rigs over here - I reckon we might update when we get home!!!!  Found our camp spot about 6km out of town - we were first to arrive for a change so could pick best place to park - and we did, having a beautiful river frontage.

Happy Hour at the end of another wonderful day

Quite different scenery - open farmlands


Travelled on Highway 29 until Fort St John where we turned onto Highway 97 - The Alaska Highway.  The countryside opened up with quite a few farming properties - quite different to the pine forests and view of the Rocky Mountains


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