Motorcycle Road Trip 2011 – Day 7

Rocky Mountains, Highway 1, British Columbia, Canada

Rocky Mountains, Highway 1, British Columbia, Canada

Day 7 of my motorcycle road trip was another beautiful day of riding through the Rocky Mountains. The Rocky Mountains are truly amazing. Very few places in North America are this dramatic and beautiful.

Leaving Kelowna on Highway 97 had me riding along side some very scenic mountains, streams and lakes. Highway 97 takes you through several small towns such as Vernon, BC and Spallumcheen, BC. As someone that has mostly lived in big cities, I’m truly amazed by the nature beauty of the Rockies. However, I can’t help but think that I’d go crazy being this isolated from a big city like San Francisco or Vancouver. Although, I sure that the people who live here love it. I eventually met up with the Trans Canada Highway 1 at Sicamous and continued my journey east.

The motorcycle ride from Sicamous through to Golden, BC takes you through Rogers Pass. It was probably one of the most scenic areas in the Rocky Mountains. Unfortunately, it was raining through much of this part of the ride. So, I didn’t pull over anywhere to take a picture of the mountains. You’ll just have to trust me on this one.

I stopped at a tourist information building just outside of Golden for a break. They had a television screen showing weather in the Golden, Banff and Jasper areas. I was planning to ride to Banff, then backtrack up Highway 93 to Jasper. I was on this route in the 1980’s and I remember Jasper and the Athabasca Glacier on the Columbia Icefield as being very beautiful. However, the weather report called for thunderstorms late today and tomorrow. I decided that I’d had enough of riding my motorcycle on winding mountain roads in the rain, and wasn’t excited about adding thunderstorms to the picture.

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Back on my BMW R1200RT motorcycle, as I rode into Golden, BC, the rain started to let up. It was lunch time, so I grabbed my maps and headed into a restaurant to contemplate any route changes. While sitting eating lunch, an elderly couple at the table next to me started asking me about my trip. The gentleman, now 82, told me a fond memory of a motorcycle in his youth. A never ceases to amaze me how friendly everyone is to someone traveling on a motorcycle. Every I’ve met along the way seems to treat me like a long lost friend or relative. The couple helped me explore my options, and we concluded that I should ride from Banff to Calgary, then north to Edmonton, rather than going through Jasper.

The ride from Golden, BC to Lake Louise, Alberta was nice and sunny. A major improvement from earlier in the day. Lake Louise is a very popular vacation spot. Lots of tourists around. I walked around Chateau Lake Louise and over to the lake. Lake Louise with the Victoria Glacier in the background amazingly picturesque. I’ve got several pictures in the picture gallery below. Be sure to check them out.

The ride from Lake Louise to Banff was less than an hour. I stopped just before Banff to take some pictures of the mountains. One mountain range was particularly intriguing. It looked like someone took a chisel and chopped off a wedge of the mountain. I got into Banff about 5:00 pm. Banff is a very nice town, but it is mostly full of tourists. I walked around for awhile, still contemplating whether to backtrack toward Jasper, or continue on Highway 1 toward Calgary. The risk of thunderstorms, and uncertainty of where to stay the night if I headed north on Highway 93, wasn’t an appealing thought. But, it would be a pretty route. I was getting tired, which may have been why I was even considering the decision again. I called my wife, Jo-Anne, to chat and get her opinion. She suggested that I spend the night in Canmore, a nice little town just east of Banff of Highway 1. Strange how sometimes it takes someone else to make you see the obvious. So, I’m in Canmore for the night.


Related Posts

Motorcycle Road Trip 2011 – Day 6

Motorcycle Road Trip 2011 – Day 8 and 9

Motorcycle Road Trip 2011 – Day 1

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