A visit to the Western Waters

We had been talking about it for a few weeks. When would we be able to travel to Edmonton to see Philip, Amanda, Carlyle, Fitz and Paige? We were with them in February for a few days and we had return trips planned in May and August, but those trips were cancelled. We had planned to be there for this Christmas, but that was seemingly cancelled was being threatened during our global pandemic. If we were going to go, we concluded, it had to be now. With vacation time upon us, we set aside our other plans and packed the van.

And we were off! It’s about 3600 km to Edmonton depending on which direction you travel. Some of our friends had just done this trip and raved about the scenery along the shore of Lake Superior. So we decided we would try it. Toronto to WaWa would be day one.

We couldn’t get a hotel room in Wawa, nor anywhere near… no matter we’ll do an extra hour and book one in Maranthon. Oh, boy. What a crumby hotel that was! Can’t believe we paid for that.

Day two was fog, rain, dark clouds, very cool temperatures as we scooted along the shoreline of Lake Superior. No sightseeing on this trip… just fog, fog and more fog.

Following the trucks helps where the fog is thickest!

Our journey improved as we got into Manitoba (man that place is flat!) and eventually Sasktchewan which is much more hilly that you might expect.

The huge systems at the rail have replaced the wooden silos of the past

As you drive along the prairie you are really struck by the importance of agriculture to this region. Combines regularly appear along the road and the rail lines, which track with the highway for the most part, are dotted with incredibly large silo/loading stations. These are massive and the trains are dwarfed by the infrastructure around them.

The West

We were a bit nervous in this time of the pandemic about accessing food and washrooms as we traveled. That turned out to be a problem that was usually solved in one way or another. A few places did refuse to let us use the washroom (small town Northern Ontario) but we did manage to find one in short order. We traveled with everything we might need if we really had to be self sufficient but in the end we were okay. Food proved to be accessible if not entirely plentiful at times. We carried snacks and drinks in our cooler (plug-in) and sheet/blanket/pillow.

A&W and Subway usually were our reliable stops!

And then how great it was to pull up to Phil and Amanda’s lovely home! They were awaiting us out on the front porch with big smiles and lots of love! It’s worth the drive to Edmonton!

We had a great visit, and I’ll share a bit more in upcoming blog posts – but yes Amanda – you’ve been blogged – again!

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