Day 3: Calgary, Alberta to Cranbrook, BC: 387km (by car).
Friday, August 22, 2014.
Rain and 9C then 18C with sunny breaks.
We now have in our custody a Chevrolet Cruze and we are going to drive it to Kelowna over a couple of days. With our trusty steeds stowed securily in the trunk we are heading west in search of warmer and drier weather.
After crunching some numbers we realized that we don’t quite have enough time to pedal to Vancouver from Calgary, at least not the way we want to do it. This decision was reaffirmed during our drive south from Calgary this morning down highway 22.
Although the route was relatively flat with a few rolling hills to begin with, the road slowly erupted into an up, up, up and down roller coaster as it traversed the foothills of Mount Livingstone. The final 130km of highway 22 also has NO SERVICES. It was a gorgeous drive though.
We headed west on highway 3 into the Crow’s Nest Pass region. The road started ascending but at a comparatively gentle fashion. The clouds were low and it was still raining. After driving for awhile I was due for a break so we stopped at the site of the massive Frank rock slide. There was an interpretive center there and we were able to hike out onto the slide. There was an ominous feeling about the place especially with the misty, wet weather.
Mom took over the driving as we kept heading west, up to the Crow’s Nest Pass which is also the continental divide. We had been pretty excited to pedal this part of the country, but it will have to be next time.
The descent from the pass seemed to go on and on and we were both thinking about how much fun that would have been to coast on our bikes for what seemed like miles.
As we went west, the skies seemed to be lightening and just before we arrived in Cranbrook we witnessed actual sunshine, something we haven’t seen in days.
Time to find a place to stay. We pulled into the parking lot of the Super 8, but decided to look online first. The Lazy Bear Motel seemed to be the one for us so we made a reservation using an unnamed hotel finder. Then we got back in the car and drove down the road to check in. Turns out that only moments before someone else got the last room there, so when we arrived we did not have a room afterall. We had a good laugh with the proprietor about it and he referred us to the Kootenay Country Inn. Finally we were checked in and back on our bikes in search of our supper.
At the grocery store we picked up some soup to heat up which we bolstered with lentils, sweet potato and a small salad. All of this driving has tired us out and it us business as usual after our late supper. We plan to go for a ride in the morning before getting back on the road in the car.