Saturday, June 27, 2009

This year's trip

Click image to enlarge

The easiest way to capture this year's annual motorcycle ride is a blog. I'll try to grab a few pictures each day and put them up in a new post.

This year I'll be heading to Banff, Lake Louise, and Jasper, Alberta, and then I'll take a loop through eastern British Columbia before heading back south.

The day before leaving

I had my chief peacock guarding the bike all day.

Day 1, Hot Sulfur Springs, CO., 6-27-2009

Got a good early start.

Near Hot Sulfur Springs, CO.

Last year, I happened upon the Riverside Hotel in Hot Sulfur Springs, built in 1903. I had a very pleasant stay, so I decided to spend the night there again this year.

So, this young man sat down next to me at the bar and asked the inn keeper for a lemonade. His dad came and told the bartender to put it on his tab. The dad left, and the young man said, "A tab. This changes everything."

I lucked into their prime rib special at dinner time. Check out the Riverside's dinning room if you're in the neighborhood. You won't be disappointed.

Day 2, Thermopolis, WY, 6-28-2009

Well, what's there to say about Thermopolis? I suspect there is a good reason that I have not been here before.

'Nuff said. Tomorrow, Chico Hot Springs, MT.

Day 3, Chico Hot Springs, MT, 6-29-2009

Nice drive today. Went through Yellowstone, saw lots of water, lots of buffalo.

I'm staying at one of my favorite places, the Chico Hot Springs Resort 30 miles north of Gardiner.

I had dinner with a couple of folks that I met at the hotel: Terry and Judy. Nice people!

Tomorrow: through the rest of Montana, and over to Canada.

Day 4, Entered Canada, 6-30-2009

I had dinner at The Prince of Wales Hotel in Waterton Lakes, Alberta.

The wait staff are all young folk that come from all over Canada. They get to wear the traditional Canadian outfits.

A few deer bedded down across the street from my motel.

Tomorrow: Lake Louise and the Icefield Parkway to Jasper.

Day 5, Canada Day in Banff, 7-1-2009

Today I headed further north, towards Banff.

Before too long, oh, oh.

Please don't ask how much it costs to get caught going 39 KPH over the limit in Canada.

I arrived at Banff on July 1, Canada Day, their equivalent of Independence Day. They had a parade. Check out the baritone sax section in one of the marching bands:

Also, check out the tubage:

Canadian, eh?

Day 6, Lake Louise and the Icefields Parkway, 7-2-2009

It was 3 degrees Celsius when I pulled out of Banff at the crack of 9:00. I took a short ride up to Lake Louise for Breakfast.

I had a nice light breakfast.

Afterwards I met a couple of other bikers that were roughly in the middle of an 8,000 mile ride on their GS's.

A couple of baby Clark's Nutcrackers calling for their mommy.

This might be mommy.

I walked back to the bike and was getting ready to leave Lake Louise when this older gentleman started a conversation with me in the parking lot. It turns out that he has been a fixture at Lake Louise for quite some time. His name is Niel Gow, and he said that he was going to play Amazing Grace by the edge of the Lake on his alpen horn. I had to hear this, so I helped him carry his gear back up the the lake's edge. At 11:00 sharp, he played, with the music echoing off the lake.

Niel is quite a character -- I am glad I got to meet him.

The next 150 miles were up the Icefield Parkway on the way to Jasper through some pretty spectacular country.

Tomorrow: heading back south.

Day 7, Kelowna BC, 7-3-2009

The day started nice and cool, and ended hot -- around 91 degrees by the time I dropped down in to Kelowna.

Tomorrow night I'll be back in the States.

Day 8, Lewiston ID, 7-4-2009

A nice, calm ride today. Left Kelowna, BC at 8:00 this morning and took a mountain pass road where it was nice and cool. At about 10:00, in the middle of nowhere I came upon this General Store. The sign siand "Hot Coffee", so I stopped for a cup and a muffin.

Later in the day I arrived at Lewiston ID -- 100 degrees HOT! Then while making this post the laptop died. Deader than a doornail (whatever that means). I had to finish this post in the lobby on the Comfort Inn's complementary desktop.

I'll finish the posts when I get home in a few days.

Day 9, Boise, ID 7-5-2009

It turned out to be a very long day in which I finally ended up in Boise at 7:30pm in 98 degree temperatures.

Along the way from northern Idaho I did see some beautiful country. Check out the White Bird Battlefield Monument along HWY 95 in central Idaho.