"bLog means boring-Log"
day 21 in mountie-land, (0 comments)
we left banff early. after having packed our stuff, booked our next room at a b&b in calgary, and having a small breakfast from our groceries, we got in the car and left banff. on our way through and out of town we saw the banff triathlon, which was through the whole city. it was wonderful to all watch the people and the age-range was from kids to really old people - that was quite impressive.
while driving out of the rocky mountains i got a little sad and depressed, as with 20 kilometres, there was a drastic change in scenery, colour, and temperature. from densely wooded mountains to plains of fields, from bright and rich colours, to brownish and rather pale. i definitely liked it better in the rockies.
in calgary[001-002] we had a little break to grab something to bite and a coffee and took an hour to clean our car thoroughly. this means throwing out all the liter, vacuuming the car passenger compartment, and having it washed in the car wash. not something that is a lot of fun, but it has to be done, as we will return the car tomorrow, and we thought it's better to have it done right away.
so, with our shiny car we were heading to the horseshoe[003-026] canyon where the temperature climbed up to 30 degrees celsius. puh, we were not used to that anymore. also people had short trousers and t-shirts only again. we soon adjusted to that way of dressing as it really was hot and the sun beat down.
horseshoe canyon is a weird landscape with strange stone formations. one can see the sedimentary layers, containing shale, sandstone, and coal; all from the cretaceous age, when this area used to be a swamp. the shapes were then later formed by creeks. a lot of fossil material was found here in this area too, like dinosaur bones.
which then led us to drumheller, where they have the world's largest dinosaur. so the entire city is about dinosaurs. they are basically everywhere, and from where we parked the car to the biggest dinosaur we spotted more dinosaurs[027-029,031-032,045-046] than humans. the ones on the streets are really cute, and it takes away the feeling of being in a ghost town. also they are friendly looking, bright spots in this otherwise dull surrounding.
the largest dinosaur in the world reminded me a bit of "dinky the dinosaur" in the game "fallout - new vegas". in both dinos one can walk up the stairs and enjoy the view from the mouth of the ancient life form, but in the real one, i refrained from climbing, as it was too hot for the both of us. at the visitor center right next to the dinosaur we asked a nice lady what else there is around to see, and she happily gave us a map and directions how to get to the local sights.
first one was a little church[049-053] they had there, and when i entered i almost bumped my head on the ceiling. so i walked in ducking my head. two rows of seats on each side, a small pulpit, music coming via a land line telephon - marvellous, i really liked that. i think i might have even attended a mess in that little thing just for the fun of it.
back into the canadian badlands, we drove to a group of hoodoos nearby. hoodoos[054-089] are created by a hard stone that protects its underlying softer stone ground from being washed out and eroded. so what's left after millions of years is a pillar with a rock on top of it, being several metres tall. really bizarre and fascinating.
it is said that they have their names from the word "voodoo", as it was believed that hoodoos are petrified giants who come alive in the dark. to protect the hoodoos, iron walkways were constructed around the hoodoos, so they can be easily accessed and are safe from destruction by people.
then we tried to find the ghost town of wayne[090-091], a former coal miner town. but all we found were a few houses with gardens and trailers, and a saloon. not really what we were expecting, so we drove back the dusty road, crossing the eleven one-lane bridges, each with a wooden plank bed, again. too bad, i would have loved to see a ghost town here in the badlands.
we started heading back to calgary, as the sun began to set. on our way back, we had a little break at the well hidden and quiet orkneys viewpoint[095-110].
then we drove on westward, with the sun setting in front of us. while this made it hard to see the road for nina who was driving, it made a wonderful photo opportunity for me.
we took highway 9 and made a few stops to take pictures, while driving on a straight road, framed with endless fields to both sides.
it seemed the later it got, the more mosquitoes were out. at one spot[160-162], where we stopped, it was especially bad, so we did not stay out of the car for longer than a minute. now we knew that there can be a mosquito problem in canada. this was always mentioned by our guide book, people we told about our canada trip, and we read that quite often while doing travel research. but so far we haven't had any nuisance of this kind.
lucky us, i guess.
it was already too dark for the camera, when we saw a badger crossing the road. aaaaaw, exotic wildlife, isn't that wonderful - so cute.
and so there's only one day left in canada...
track for day 21