Day 3: Jasper

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Day 3 was a break from traveling, to enjoy Jasper National Park. We took a whole host of pictures with the Nikon camera, which I will post in Edmonton when we have a chance to load them on the laptop. You will only have to put up with my cheesy Hipstamatic shots for so much longer!
We went out to Maligne Lake and hiked the Mary Schaffer Loop, where we were promised lots of wildlife sightings. All we saw were a few Germans, who had seen a black bear. We decided to not risk a bear encounter and turned back to the parking lot. As we were crossing the parking lot, we looked up and saw a mama deer and two young deer not 10 feet from our truck. The Dahg was beside himself!
We decided the rain clouds looked too ominous to settle in at camp, so we drove a bit down the Icefields Parkway. I wanted to see the Athabasca Glacier, but after an hour driving through some pretty amazing mountains, the Hubby finally found the park map, and we realized it was another 90 minutes to the glacier. Not only were we going to potentially run out of gas if we attempted the trip, it would be dark by the time we made it there anyways. We decided to head back, with the knowledge that when we settle back in BC and start popping out spawn, we can take them on a big Rocky Mountain Roadtrip and include the glacier.
Speaking of running out of gas, towing a trailer and full truck is not only slow going speedwise, it’s heavy on gas usage! We’ve been keeping a tally on gas milage. We’re currently averaging about 7 km per litre, which is about 16.4 miles per gallon. That’s not bad, but it’s considerably more gas than we regularly use! We also have been going through the mountains. The worst mpg we got was up the Coquahalla. The Rockies so far have not been bad. When we compare it to our trip last spring crisscrossing the American West, it sure seems like the Cascade Mountains are much steeper passes than the Rockies. The Rockies are just really wide!
Rain clouds had been gathering all day, so we decided to eat dinner in town at Jasper Pizza. Delicious pizza, and it was warm and dry, unlike our campsite. On the way back from dinner, we saw a male elk and two female elks blocking half the road. Thus, our final observation: the rule of thumb for spotting wildlife in Jasper is avoid the parks and trails, and stick to the major roads and parking lots.
Today we’re off to spend some time in Edmonton. We’ll be staying with our friend S, who just moved there and is keen to show off the city. We’ll be hitting up the Miette Hot Springs since they are on our way out of the park, then we’ll see what is on the agenda tonight!
-W-

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