Yesterday, we left Edmonton in the fog. It was still foggy when we arrived in Hinton. FYI,Hinton is the gateway to the Rockies on the Yellowhead Highway. Because we did not want to miss the WOW moment, we decided to wait until today.
So we took our time,did some laundry, reloaded on gas and propane and settled down in the mall to watch the trick or treaters going by.
When we got up this morning,it had snowed and it was again foggy. After waiting for a bit, we decided we had to leave anyway because we needed to make Prince George by nightfall.
The WOW moment, is about 20 kilometres west of Hinton. You crest the top of a hill and WOW, you have snow capped mountains on either side of the road. We were fortunate that the fog had dissipated enough by that time that Cindy and I could see the vista.
Altitude, now that is a funny one. You may remember I said we were about 1000 metres, and peaking to 1111 in the flatlands in Southern Alberta. As we were travelling West from Hinton, I saw a marker that said “highest point on Yellowhead Highway”. I did not see the number, but my GPS said 1100 metres. So here we are approaching the Rockies and we are no higher from sea level than last week. As we proceeded towards Jasper, we hovered between 1000 and 1100 metres.
We saw several interesting things near Jasper, see Cindy’s blog at 2fromaway.ca
One of our sights was the Maligne river canyon. At an altitude of about 1186 metres, we looked out over Jasper and then down into this chasm, full of waterfalls and whirlpools. Truly a spectacular sight.
From Jasper to Prince George, there are a lot more ups and downs. Oh my Sinuses! The average was about 800metres. Although we got to that average altitude by dropping about 200metres in about 2 kilometres. Phew!
We stopped at the base of Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies.I looked at other markers n the visitor centre. There are 3 other mountains around it and they are a whopping 1000 metres shorter. So Robson is truly a giant among its neighbours.
As you can see we got there when the clouds were low enough to see its impressive peak.
As we got nearer to Prince George, we could see the 2 mountain ranges moving farther apart. There was more open space, farmland,cattle, bales, barns and many other things we have been seeing lately. The last 40km into the city were in dense fog so we could no longer see how far we were from snow capped mountains. We did not see much of Prince George last night, but it is an industrial town nestled deep in a river valley at about 650m above sea level.
We made it across the 120th meridian which makes us 1/3 of the way around the earth. We also crossed the 53rd parallel which is as far North as we have been so far on our trip.
After that white knuckle end of trip, we are resting up for another 4 hour hike into the wilderness to visit a family friend. Tuesday, we resume our trek towards Haida Gwaii.