Pincher Creek, AB


Since the start of my trip I’d been using The Milepost guidebook every step of the way when making decisions.  It was a great resource for mileages between cities and services along the road.  Finally being off The Milepost marked a transition of being done with the Alaska and Canda portion of the trip.  I’m now only 40 miles from Montana.


My last few days in Canada have been great, and I feel like I’ve milked it for all it is worth.  After Canmore the road south was mostly gravel, and then paved for a while.  Though I didn’t know this when I originally planned my route to avoid Calgary, Hwy 40 crosses Highwood pass at 7,200 ft, the highest driveable pass in Canada.  Despite the altitude, it was actually easier than the passes on the Icefield Hwy;  the gentle slope leading up to it was rather enjoyable.  Just before reaching the top I took a break for some pictures of a few mountain sheep standing in the middle of the road.


Just 24 hours ago I was struggling up a gravel road, even falling off my bike, at about 5mph, working my way out of the foothills of the Canadian Rockies.  That morning I woke up and my thermometer said 29°F inside my tent.  Maybe my thermometer was wrong, but my bucket of water outside had a nice layer of ice on it, so I believe it.  By the end of yesterday I had descended into rolling farmland, with the peaks of the Rockies barely visible in my rearview mirror.  Not since the first few days of my trip in the Artic tundra has the landscape been so wide open and treeless.


I’ll be back in the mountains in a few days, after crossing the border sometime tomorrow and making my way to the east side of Glacier National Park.  I’ll ride Going to the Sun road across the park on Monday, and then meet my cousin Ingrid at the Amtrak station in West Glacier on Tuesday morning.  Then I’ll have a few days off the bike while we do some hiking in the park.

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