September 06, 2007
We got up bright and early to be on our way to Jasper. But, Shadow did it to us again. This time the battery was dead. At first, mom thought it was because she had left the key in the unlocked position, even though she had disconnected everything else. We looked all over the park for help but no one was awake. We finally found one big bus with some lights on and knocked. A lady appeared in her robe. We were very sorry to disturb her. In the brief conversation it dawned on mom that there was nothing wrong with Clementine so we could drive to a gas station, which we did. Only problem was they didn’t do anything but sell gas. They sent us off to an auto mechanic but when we got there we found it had gone out of business. We spied some kind of Canadian government office and went in. They weren’t allowed to jump batteries but let us use the phone to call AAA. The nearest tow company was in Banff so we waited around for an hour and a half. It took the guy exactly 20 seconds to start Shadow with a portable battery charger. Sheesh! We should have one of those things. We were finally off at 10:30. That little adventure cost us about two hours.
After mom got done beating herself up for being so stupid she realized that probably the reason the battery went dead was because we hadn’t driven Shadow for several weeks and then we hooked that braking thing up and it just sapped what was left of the juice. It may explain the trouble we had yesterday. The battery was just giving up.
It’s a beautiful drive up the up the Ice Fields Parkway to Jasper. Many say it's the most beautiful drive in the world and I certainly wouldn't argue. But, it was cloudy and rainy most all of the way. We made a quick stop at Bow Lake and an even quicker stop at the Columbia Ice Fields. That old glacier is getting very tired looking and is not the least bit photogenic. We stopped long enough to start Shadow and let her run ten minutes just in case.
We pulled in to the Whistler campground in Jasper at about 2:30 pm. Thank goodness we had reservations because the place was sold out except for dry camping sites. We got a really nice spot. Mom got us all set up in about an hour and we took off for a hike. We drove up 16 to the Maligne Lake turnoff and went to the “sixth bridge” trail which is at the confluence of the Athabasca and Maligne rivers. There are number of pretty little trails to follow in this general area. We took #7, which follows the Maligne.
After a couple of hours of walking we called it a day. Before going to our campsite we went to check out the other side of the campground and found a great big old bull elk and a couple of cows. Mom, naturally, pulled out her trusty Nikon and fired off a few shots!
That was our day, this day. Looking forward to tomorrow. I know I’m going to get to hike!
Until next time….