Thursday, July 04, 2013

July 4—photos will be uploaded later—no cell service on T-Mobile

It cooled off dramatically overnight, so sleeping was much better than last night.  For a hostel, the Banff Y is pretty quiet at night.  Overall, it has been quite good, except when it is over 80 degrees during the day.  The staff is exceptional.

Heading out, we stopped for breakfast, then jumped on the Trans Canada Highway for 15 or so miles, then turned onto 1A.  We saw another Great Divide rider and the riding was pretty nice, without loads of climbs, yet. There was a peregrine nest on top of a bridge, with babies.  We managed to create a wildlife traffic jam, when the cars stopped to see what we were looking at.  Turning onto 93, things changed.

One long moderate climb, followed by a long moderate downhill brought us to Marble Canyon CG. It was only 1:30, but we scoped out the CG, set up camp inside a pavilion (not supposed to, but we noticed the sign too late) and then went to hike to Marble Creek "Falls".  The Falls were actually a chasm with high water running through it.  It was incredible and rivaled Watkins Glen in NY in incredibleness. I would come back, to both Banff and this CG to hike the falls again.

Afterwards, we ate a 10-year old backpacking meal (Stroganoff)- pretty dreadful.  Way too salty.  We met Mike, traveling alone and creating his own route coming down from Alaska.  Way cool.  Apparently a woman traveling north is also here, making the cyclists almost outnumber the car campers. There is a solid block building dedicated to food storage for cyclists and Roberta saw a bear down by the river.  The CG hosts had lots of advice about bears, again bells are no good, but spray is very effective, if a bear sniffs around your tent, move to the center, (your head away from the wall).  They were really sweet.  Common joke: how do you tell black bear scat from grizzly?  Grizzly contains bear bells.

avg speed 11mph
max- 43.7
total miles- 34
beginning mileage- 224 (must be subtracted off every entry)

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