Date: 13 and 14 July
Final bear count: 11
Weather: hot in Canada 30 degrees, nice in The Netherlands 20 degrees
This was unfortunately our last day of our trip to Canada. The morning started with packing and a nice breakfast. Sandy and Gary were off to church so we had the morning for ourselves. Luckily they came back on the moment we left so we could do another quick goodbye before we left to the airport.
After returning our car at the rental service we met Henry again at the airport. We decided to go for a quick burger in a restaurant before the gate so that Henry could still join us. We had a lovely meal with the World cup final in the background. Lot of people were cheering for Argentina and some were cheering for the Germans. After lunch we went to skip the huge line before customs. Awesome that HW had priority boarding!
We had a good flight and came back with nice weather in the Netherlands. Sunny but cooler than we were used to.
So I did the about the same trip with my brother in September 2001. It was two weeks after 9-11. The biggest change HW and I did, was not to fly to and from Vancouver. Going to Calgary saved us quite some travel time. In 2001 we spend way to much time on Vancouver Island. We did it now in less time and it was a good idea to go over there first and save the Rockies as the finale of our trip. We missed Glacier Park last year because of bad weather. Doing the hard trail made up for it. On that height you had a nice view over all the glaciers. Also visiting the Tyrell museum was a nice change to do instead of Head smashed in.
We also went again to the Peninsula of Washington state. I forgot too much about Olympic National Park. There are only two trails of 1 and 1 and a half mile each. Time to travel there is just a waste of time. Rain forest can also be found on Pacific Rim national Park on Vancouver Island. Mount Rainier was a great addition. Sadly weather was bad, but to me that is a reason to go over there once more in the future. Next Canada trip Mt. Rainier trip is still an option. And maybe add Yellowstone to the list?
Sadly I did not had a chance to visit a friend in Tacoma. Hopefully circumstances will be better the next time I am visiting that area. I did meet other people on this holiday. We spend 4 nights with the aunt and uncle of HW and met their sons and friends. We had some awesome days. The stampede breakfasts were the best. The stampede itself was a bit of a disappointment. Next time I would like to buy some tickets to see some rodeo or something.
Lot of things were the same and it was awesome to see those again. Others were different and were a bit of a disappointment. First one: do not go to The Riverbend Hotel ever in Golden. Secondly Kootenay was burned down a bit. It is the life cycle of forests, but still it was a bit disappointing to me. Marble Canyon just lost a lot of its flair. Also Canmore was quite a change. From a small village with a cheap motel it went to a tourist base for summer and winter tourists with a lot of expensive hotels. Not knowing this was quite a blow to me. The biggest disappointment for me were the canoes on the beautiful lakes. Going in June/July gives you nice sceneries with a lot of impressive rivers and falls because of all the melting water. In September most of them have been toned down or are even dried up. But in September and October there are no canoes on lakes making room for awesome photos. Also as a final note: early summer has a lot of Mosquitoes.
Some changes were just weird: the Chinese took over the from the Japanese. Maybe they are going later on vacation as well.
Again an awesome vacation. I am curious when I will be going there again and what will change in the mean time.