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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

3 Hours from Home And Back Where I Started This Wacky Adventure.

I'm back in the Highland Valley of B.C. At Lac Le Jeune Provincial Park,just a few miles from where I was when I made the decision just over a month ago,to maybe just go north and explore the Yellowhead Highway between Prince George and Prince Rupert..........Boy!...How that evolved!...Ending up 200 miles above the Arctic Circle......Wow! what a crazy,unplanned ride,that I'll never regret...I've logged 8555 kilometers/5312 miles,since leaving Tunkwa,just down the the road from here,on July 14.
Since my last entry on Saturday from Fort St. John,its been 2 full days of driving and not much photo taking,I guess I've seen so much fantastic scenery on this trip that after a while every nice view seems just like the last and you tend to stop taking pictures.
To go back to Sunday morning,a perfect driving day and an early start got me down the last 50 miles to the "Mile 0" marker of the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek B.C.(pic above)As you can see the streets are quiet in this clean and pretty little town,although it was still early as the Wal-mart parking lot still had plenty of overnighters still parked.
Within the next hour of travel in a southeasterly direction,I crossed into Alberta where within minutes I had my first big "wake me upper"as a car was passing me going the same direction,a deer jumped out from the left,causing the driver to swerve in front of me then hit his brakes.
He was just a few feet in front of me........well, the only casualty was I underwear.
After that I needed a junk food fix at Grande Prairie's "Albert and Walter",below.

From Grande Prairie,I turned south on Highway 40,for a 200 mile run through beautiful foothill country to hookup with the Yellowhead Highway at Hinton.
One thing I like about travelling on the Prairie's,is it seems every little town has a nice little public park with R.V. sites,such as the one at I believe, Beaverlodge,where I conveniently stopped and used their dump station,and found when I went to find someone to pay,that there was no charge.All these town parks seem to be well grassed and treed.(should have taken a photo)
I made my Sunday night stop at one of dozens and dozens of recreational camping areas along this 200 mile stretch of rolling wooded countryside,that has occasional views of the mountains to the west.The stop was at Pierre Greys Provincial Park,a nicely wooded 4 campground loop around several lakes.In fact it was too wooded to be able to set up my satellite dishes....The reason for no blog Monday.
Yesterday,another early start and the last 50 miles down to the Yellow Head Highway and after gassing up in Hinton,headed west toward Jasper National Park,seen in the shot below.It was time for "through the windshield shots" as I tried to make some time.Really I saw nothing in Jasper to top what I'd already seen on my northern trip,even the one elk that I saw,was surrounded by about 15 tourists with cameras...The poor thing had nowhere to go.

Then there was the "in the park" road construction,waits....This one below was a 20 minute break while they cleaned up the rock from the road from blasting the hillside.

Mid morning and back into B.C. as the weather was cool and cloudy and just in the 50's.but as I headed south off the Yellowhead onto highway 5 toward Kamloops,it started to brighten up and by the time I arrived in Kamloops around 4pm,the temperature had reached 85.The first time that I have had to use the A/C for awhile.
This nice glacier between Blue River and Clearwater was a must stop.

This is the aftermath of the Barrier fire a few years ago,that threatened and even burned into the town a bit if I recall.

Finally,up the hill from Kamloops and slightly cooler temps at 3000 ft and the Highland Valley.This campground used to be well wooded until the Mountain Pine Beetle came along,now its a treeless former shell of itself.Although the picture doesn't show it looking that bad.

So this morning I make my final 3 hour run for home in the Fraser Valley.This will probably be the last blog entry until I hit the road again in November,when I make my usual snowbird trip to the great desert southwest and maybe again,Mexico.
The title says it all....If Wandering Willy isn't wandering......He isn't blogging.
I hate to lose the following that I've built up on this trip,and I really appreciated all the kind comments,so keep checking for any updates that I might put in from time to time and hopefully my blogging friends who have links to this site.....will spread the word when I start again....Take Care All.


  1. Welcome back, Willy! And thanks for the great stories about your trip up past the Arctic Circle - great stuff. And the wonderful pictures too - they were all terrific. I'll be sure to let everyone know when you start to blog again.

  2. Welcome home WW. That was a heck of a trip you had yourself there. Memories to last a lifetime. The rest of us will keep the blogging homefires burning for you & we'll be keeping an eye out for you in November. Maybe we'll even catch you somewhere in the desert this winter. Not exactly sure where we're going yet but for sure it will be New Mexico, Arizona & California somewhere. Stay tuned & take care...........:))

  3. Thanks for the journey Willy, I enjoyed your stories and the great pictures. I'm looking forward to your next journey south.