TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2017
Friday, 27 September, 2013 17:00

And Back To Vancouver

Vancouver, Here We Come Again …. Up early the next morning, an enjoyable breakfast with the other guests at the B&B, some more sightseeing advice from Clara and we were off on our trek towards Vancouver.  This is an 850 kms journey without our side trips so we expect to cover at least 1000 km over the next three days.   Overnight it had snowed high up on the peaks of the mountains and in every direction you looked, it was a postcard.  Our first stop was Johnston Canyon and a 3 km walk to the falls. This is also a “must” visit.  Much of the walkway is a cantilever track off the edge of the canyon with magnificent views around every corner and an impressive waterfall complete with a tunnel to a viewing platform.

The spectacular Johnston Falls

The spectacular Johnston Falls

Cantilever walkway leading to the Johnston Falls

Cantilever walkway leading to the Johnston Falls

Snowing Again …. We then drove to Moraine Lake, a glacial fed lake 15 km outside the village of Lake Louise situated in “The Valley of the Ten Peaks”. It is 1885 meters above sea level and a “must see” according to Clara.  As we drove the 15 km into the lake it started to snow, and on entering the carpark it became quite heavy.  We expected to see just another lake but what we did see took our breath away. It was a small lake with sharp cliffs on three sides all covered in snow from the recent snowfalls. We climbed what is called “The Rock Pile” and obtained great views of the lake and the surrounding snow covered mountains.  According to the travel brochures this is the most photographed view in all of Canada. It was then on to Lake Louise, a walk around the lake and then we enjoyed a nice lunch in the famous Fairmont Lake Louise Hotel.  A great start on our trek towards Vancouver.

The spectacular Moraine Lake near Lake Louise

The spectacular Moraine Lake near Lake Louise

The Rock Pile at Lake Moraine. A natural feature.

The Rock Pile at Lake Moraine. A natural feature.

The beautiful Lake Louise

The beautiful Lake Louise

Fairmont Hotel at Lake Louise

Fairmont Hotel at Lake Louise

What Are Spiral Tunnels …. Our next stop was the railway spiral tunnels on the Trans Canada Highway.  There are two spiral tunnels that are used to change the elevation of the trains as they come out of the Rocky Mountains into the valley below.  We were lucky enough to see a massive freight train going through the tunnels and it was so long that we witnessed the train coming out of the second tunnel and the rear of the train yet to go into the first tunnel.  Very impressive.   We then continued our journey through Rogers Pass to Revelstoke and our overnight accomodation.

Spiral tunnels out of the Rockies

Spiral tunnels out of the Rockies

Lakes And Salmon Running …. Next morning we set out on our way to Salmon Arm in the middle of the large area known as the Shuswap and the home of the great lakes popular for houseboating, golf and skiing.  We took a side trip to the Roderick Haig-Brown National Park on the Adams River to once again witness the salmon run and the salmon spawning. The salmon return after swimming 400 km from the Pacific Ocean to spawn and then die.

A salmon spawning.  She swam 400 km from the Pacific Ocean where she lived for 3 years

A salmon spawning. She swam 400 km from the Pacific Ocean where she lived for 3 years

A Dramatic Change In Scenery And Weather ….  Our journey then continued onto Kamloops, a town with a population of approximately 1 million people.  What was amazing is the dramatic change in scenery from snow capped mountains to almost desert like conditions around Kamloops. For several miles before the town there are dramatic cliffs in an area called Turtle Valley. After a brief stop in Kamloops for afternoon tea we made our way to Merritt through the Nicola Valley for our second night on the road.  In this 80 kilometer stretch the weather must have changed at least 6 times from bright sunshine in Kamloops, to rain, to sleet, back to rain, overcast and then bright sunshine again as we drove into Merritt. We stopped at the historic Coldwater Hotel for a beer and then went seeking out a bed for the night.

Turtle Valley driving into Kamloops.  Very dry countryside.

Turtle Valley driving into Kamloops. Very dry countryside.

Brides And Bridges …. After an overnight stay in Merritt we headed to Vancouver which was 268 kms on the Trans Canada Highway. Along the way we had a short stop for coffee and a 15 minute walk up a steep track to see the Bridal Veil falls which drop 122 metres in a veil like pattern.  It was then straight ahead to Vancouver and  across the Port Mann Bridge. It is one of the largest and longest bridges in Canada and impressive with its modern architecture

Bridal Veil Falls near Rosedale on the Trans Canada Highway.

Bridal Veil Falls near Rosedale on the Trans Canada Highway.

The Port Mann Bridge in Vancouver. A toll bridge costing $3 per trip for a car.

The Port Mann Bridge in Vancouver. A toll bridge costing $3 per trip for a car.

We are In Suspense ….  Capilano Suspension Bridge Park was our destination situated in North Vancouver. We thought $36 each just to see a bridge was a bit expensive but what the heck, we were on holidays. What we didn’t expect to see was a magnificent rain forest with 1000 year old trees, a massive canyon with a river below and much more. The suspension bridge is 220 metres long hovering above the Capilano Canyon and the bridge sways and wobbles quite dramatically as people walk across. On the opposite side of the Canyon the rain forest has a series of boardwalks and suspended treetop walks allowing you to explore the rain forest without environmental impact. Very impressive. Back across the suspension bridge you have the “Cliff Walk”, a 50 cm wide platform, about 300 metres long that is cantilevered off the edge of the cliff face 100 metres above the canyon floor. A number of sections of the walk have clear glass floors and you feel you are suspended in mid air above the canyon. Finally the compulsory gift shop and a couple of well presented food stalls. We spent 2 hours meandering around and thoroughly enjoyed our time there.  $36 per head well spent.

The Capilano Suspension Bridge.  $36 a trip and you have to walk.

The Capilano Suspension Bridge. $36 a trip and you have to walk.

The cantilevered Cliff Walk at Capilano Suspension Bridge facility.

The cantilevered Cliff Walk at Capilano Suspension Bridge facility.

Our Final Day ….  We woke on our final day in Vancouver to cold and wet weather and decided to spend some time riding the Aquabus ferries that travel around False Creek and English Bay area of Vancouver.  These cute little ferries only hold about 16 people and travel to 8 points around the inner harbour area.  We lashed out and purchased a day ticket for $10.00 per person and went to Granville Island for a walk around the Public Market and other shops, back on the ferry to the Science Works Museum, then walked around to another ferry stop and picked up the ferry to take us to the Maritime Museum.  It enabled us to see Vancouver from the water, a different perspective.

Cute little Aquabus ferries that transport you round the inner harbour in Vancouver

Cute little Aquabus ferries that transport you round the inner harbour in Vancouver

Liz meets a new friend at Science Works

Liz meets a new friend at Science Works

An old square rigger at the Wooden Boat Club at the Maritime Museum ferry stop

An old square rigger at the Wooden Boat Club at the Maritime Museum ferry stop

Sunset from our hotel room on our last full day in Vancouver

Sunset from our hotel room on our last full day in Vancouver

A Disaster But Not Of Our Making ….   We were all set for our trip back to Australia.  Bags packed, to the airport early, checked in with Alaska Airlines, had a couple of nice glasses of wine and we were all set for the 24 hour trip back to Australia, UNTIL ... we looked up at the flight departure board and found the flight was an hour and thirty five minutes late.  Oh well.  We can still make the LA to Melbourne flight OK so not to worry.  30 minutes later the flight was delayed another 30 minutes and then another 20 minutes. Finally we boarded the plane 2 3/4 hours late and pushed back for our flight to LA.  And then the plane went back to the gate, ground staff, the Captain and security came on the plane and escorted two Australians either drunk or on drugs  off the plane.  We finally arrived in LA at 1:00 AM.

Foreshore at Manhattan Beach in Los Angeles

Foreshore at Manhattan Beach in Los Angeles

A Free Day In LA ….    We missed our connection so Alaska Airlines put us up in the Marriot LAX and gave us meal vouchers for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  They also transfered us from Qantas to Virgin Australia as there were no seats available on Qantas for the next day.  We had a very pleasant day in LA.  We went to Manhattan Beach and to the Manhattan Village Shopping Centre, had a nice meal in the Marriot and we are now on our way to Australia on Virgin Australia Business class.

Historic pier at Manhattan Beach

Historic pier at Manhattan Beach

Enjoying the sunshine at Manhattan Beach in LA

Enjoying the sunshine at Manhattan Beach in LA

The end of a fabulous holiday.

Comments

Posted On
Oct 03, 2013
Posted By
Rogerabyrne

The train ride looked brilliant ..
The Glaziers & Banff brought back great memories
Johnston falls – fantastic
Amazing what ice can do with rock ..given time
Disappointed that you didn’t make more of my pass though

The aquabus are great ..
I used one to get to work at BC Hydro but it was a lot colder ..

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

READ ABOUT OUR PREVIOUS TRIPS

Our old website containing our previous trips has now been archived to make way for this new blog. If you would like to look at the old site and our previous adventures please follow the link below...

Old Site

JOIN US!

We welcome emails and comments from our readers. If you would like to leave a comment about one of our articles simply create and account on this website and comment at the bottom of an article for all to read. Alternatively you can send a private email via the details below.