Published: November 5th 2006October 18th 2006
Well following on from the last blog, we were happy trecking though the rockies crashing bikes and generally getting cold and hurt.
The main plan of the travels was to pick up 3 more back packers to use them for their gas money and travel Canada.
So off we head to backpacker central, BANFF. Well in true wenzel style we turn up in october, the slowest month for backpackers. Its not hot, or cold so it just rains and there was no hope of picking up backpackers!!! Still really nice ski village though with amazing mountains. I am deffinately glad i have a ski pass there for the winter and am spending Christmas there so cant wait.
Time to rethink however!!! Canadian gas was working out a little on the expensive side so we decided to plan a cheaper road trip down into the states heading from Banff to salt lake city, accross the nevada dessert to san fransisco and then up the pacific coast to seattle. Not bad if you ask me.
The first stop was Glacier national park on the U.S border. This place was amazing. We did a huge hike up into the mountains
to a glacier, at the foot of which was a lake with ice bergs. The lakes were so blue from the glaciers but bloody cold.
We also enountered our first bear!!! only in the distance so the pictures did not come out but we were told it was a grizzly and her cub so we stayed quite clear of it, and we saw moose!!!!
We then headed to Yellow stone national park. This is probably the most spectactular park I have ever seen made even better by the huge snow fall we had over night covering eveything including the roads.
As you can imagine covered roads equals icy, and when I spotted a Bison from the passenger seat, the brakes were hit sending us sliding over an embankement. We were not too stuck untill and american man without warning took on the role of good samaritan and without warning attatched a tow rope to the back of our van, gave it a tug and nearly tipped the van. The pictures can tell the story. Thankfully no one was hurt although the van nearly fell on a bissons head which could have hurt!!! Our wallets took
the biggest punishment when it cost us $200 to get the tow truck to get us out.( springy I think you will appreciate that story most!!!!)
Thinking that the excitment for yellowstone was over we hit the bar and went to bed.
The next day we embarked on what should have been a 5 hour hike up a mountain. The ranger said it was clear but the snow said different. 2 foot of snow covered the mountian at 11000 foot. It was cold but so worth it for the views. I hope the photos prove this as it was the best hike I have ever been on. The mountains were huge and the views from the top out of this world.
However 2 foot of snow has a tendancy to cover the paths so the short cut we intended to take could not be seen, meaning we had to walk for 10 hours to get back to the van. Worth it though. Especially for the bear story we managed to get
Waking up the mountain there were a lot of bear prints fresh in the snow, however no bears. Walking down from the mountain there
was one huge print and definately fresher than the others!!!! And no doubt the bear was about 200 meters away, so still a safe distance. We watched it for a while until it wandered into the woods. So we carried on our walk along the path. What we didnt realise was the bear liked our path too, and once we were about 25m from a large bush a huge black bear jumps up on its back feet and growls. That is enough to make your heart stop, and I dont think I have seen Karl move so fast. Not sure who was more suprised us or the bear as pretty soon the bear scarpered and did not come back. I never want to be that close to a bear in feeding season again. They are big!!!!
The next stage of the trip will be on a new blog and will take us from salt lake city to san fransisco.
hope you all enjoy the pictures and I will be in touch again soon
There are more photos below