The end of this epic road trip! Banff Downtown/driving to Calgary Airport

(My solo road trip of western Canada – Saturday 3rd/Sunday 4th October)

Well, this is the end of a truly enthralling adventure.  I am so thankful that I had this opportunity and I fully appreciate how fortunate I was to be able to take this on. 

I had no health problems, the weather was truly fantastic throughout, I saw some of the most beautiful sights I have ever witnessed, I met many amazing, kind, adventurous human beings who I learnt a lot from and who (without them knowing) changed many of my perspectives on life.

One of the key points I learnt from this trip, and the people I met who were from all over the globe, is that when an opportunity presents itself, and you have that gut feeling, even though it maybe a little selfish, take it, take it and grab that opportunity with both hands, and I can tell you that I made the right decision to do this, and now I sit here writing and ’embracing’ every moment of it and I would do it all over again, absolutely.  Everything I write about takes me back to that very place, the sights, sounds, smells…everything, a life changing experience.

A summary of my road trip:

  • 14 days spent on my solo road trip of Western Canada.
  • Over 3,000 kms driven.
  • Travelled across two provinces.
  • Explored various cities, towns and villages.
  • Adventured through 5 Canadian National Parks.
  • Visited 17 utterly beautiful lakes.
  • Best hikes were Sulphur Mountain, Colombia Icefields & Sentinel Pass.
  • Mesmerised by 6 waterfalls.
  • Breath taken away by 3 fantastic canyons.
  • Visited 2 glorious glaciers.
  • Admired the wildlife: deers, elks, foxes, killer whales, humpback whales, brown and black bears (male, female and really adorable cubs)
  • Blessed to meet people from all over the world, literally.
  • Craziest things I did:  Walk back alone though bear territory after my hike up Sentinel Pass (Banff National Park), the sun was setting and I needed to get back down before it got too dark…and of course, The Sasquatch, wow!
  • I did The Sasquatch!  Oh, sorry, did I just say that again?
  • Scariest experiences were some of the mountain drives, and the first zip line from the Eagle tour when the gate opened before me and I foolishly looked down before zipping off!
  • I did The Sasquatch! Oh, sorry, did I just say that again?  Now I am just showing off!
  • The best hike was definitely Sentinel Pass, as I mentioned before, a truly ‘quintessential’ hike and one of the best in Canada.
  • The experiences that made my heart beat the most were:  Peyto Lake, totally took my breath away and my senses initially struggled to adjust to its sheer beauty and magnificence.  The River and Jeep Safari at Blue River to see the bears and my whale watching tour in Victoria, Vancouver Island, the Humpback whale was absolutely awesome.

Interestingly for me on my last day was the weather.  The weather seemed to be a manifestation of what I was feeling from within.  My sadness of leaving, the difficulty of saying goodbye to a part of the world that I had fallen in love with, the reality that I had to say goodbye, it seemed to be projecting with the cooler temperature, the heavy clouds and the mist above and all around me.





I have been fortunate to have travelled to many places around the world, but as I write this, my sincere, genuine wish, is that one day I can come back with Nour, my beautiful, loving and selfless wife who I am indebted to.  If possible, with the girls too when they get older and where a trip like this would not be to demanding on them.  I missed Nour at every moment and every instance of this wonderful trip, we have experienced so much together over the last 14 years that we have been together, it was a little weird not to be experiencing this journey of personal growth and change with her.  Maybe this wish of mine will come true one day?

Below, I have highlighted the main milestones of my road trip and stated the dates of the relevant blogs for anyone who wishes to see them.  Just a gentle reminder that many of my blogs have videos too (for example whale watching, river and jeep bear safari, zip-lining in Whistler, etc).

PROVINCES, CITIES, TOWNS AND VILLAGES

  • Alberta (20/9)
  • Calgary (20/9)
  • Canmore (20/9)
  • Banff (20/9)
  • Jasper (25/9)
  • British Colombia (26/9)
  • Kamloops (27/9)
  • Whistler (28/9)
  • Vancouver Island – Victoria (29/9)
  • Vancouver (30/9)
  • Kelowna (1/10)
  • Revelstoke (2/10)
  • Golden (2/10)
  • Glacier (2/10)
  • Yoho (2/10)
  • Field (2/10)

CANADIAN NATIONAL PARKS

  • Banff National Park (20/9)
  • Jasper National Park (25/9)
  • Mount Revelstoke National Park (2/10)
  • Glacier National Park (2/10)
  • Yoho National Park (2/10)

GLACIERS

  • Athabasca Glacier  (24/9)
  • Stutfield Glacier (24/9)

SAFARIS AND TOURS

  • Blue River: Jeep and River Bear Safaris (26/9)
  • Zip-lining Eagle Tour & The Sasquatch (28/9)
  • Whale Watching (29/9)

WATERFALLS

  • Weeping Wall (23/9)
  • Bridal Veil Falls (23/9)
  • Tangle Creek Falls (24/9
  • Sunwapta Falls (24/9)
  • Athabasca Falls (24/9)
  • Takakkaw Falls (3/10)

CANYONS 

  • Mistaya Canyon (23/9)
  • Maligne Canyon (25/9)
  • Fraser Canyon (1/10)

ISLANDS

  • Vancouver Island (29/9)
  • Granville Island (30/9)

MY BEST HIKES

  • Sulphur Mountain (21/9)
  • Sentinel Pass – Lark Valley (22/9)
  • Colombia Icefield (24/9)

LAKES 

  • Lake Minnewanka (21/9)
  • Vermillion Lakes (21/9)
  • Lake Morraine (22/9)
  • Lake Louise (23/9)
  • Mirror Lake (23/9)
  • Lake Agnes (23/9)
  • Herbet Lake (23/9)
  • Bow Lake (23/9)
  • Peyto Lake (23/9)
  • Lake Edith (25/9)
  • Lake Annette (25/9)
  • Maligne Lake (25/9)
  • Joffre Lakes – Lower, Middle and Upper (27/9)
  • Okanagan Lake (1/10)
  • Emerald Lake (2/10)

 

 

 

 

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