Calgary Travel Blog› entry 70 of 167 › view all entries
Hooray! We've made it to Calgary and miracle-of-miracles, got a 2-night RV spot (the last site) at the Mountainview Campground http://www.calgarycamping.com/home1.html during the famous Calgary Stampede, which is celebrating its 125th year! http://calgarystampede.com/ The Visitor's Center ladies were very kind and called the campground for us this morning. We are very lucky!
Customs this morning went great- we got a nice Customs guy and we chatted after I'd handed over the passports, my driver's license, proof of insurance in Canada, and my vehicle registration before he could request it all.
The campground has a shuttle ($10 each) to take us to the Stampede tomorrow at 11:15 am and we'll return at either 5:30 pm or Midnight. Hmmm....
Upon crossing the border, we switched our GPS to metric and took off going 110! Km/hour that is.
We crossed 5,000 miles on our trip today! Although it is effort to catch up on the blog by each evening's bedtime, we feel our travel and activity pace have been sustainable and we've really gotten to experience the best of the best in many places. Or course, that is categorized as national parks and natural wonders. I would love to have all the time in the world to appreciate everything in our path, but we do prioritize our time and have been pleased with our choices.
We were told that roaming charges on cell phones were horrible and not to use ours, so we bought a few groceries at the IGA and got a $10 phone card. We also used the debit card cash back to obtain $200 in colorful Canadian money. We called Ned on a pay phone, which took multiple attempts, but finally we finally got through (but missed him).
I have no idea what our Verizon Air Card rates are for Canada, so we paid $6 for the campground wifi.
Gas is $1.38 here... per liter. There's 3.8 liters to the gallon. Yes, it's pricey.
This is like International Powder-Puff Travel. Everyone still speaks English and the exchange rate 1:1 is easy. However, there are enough changes to wake us up a bit and challenge us.
Although people have been helpful when asked, they are more, let's say "reserved" when we talk to them. I haven't gotten many warm fuzzies. I'm not sure if it is the U.S., the Texas license plate, me, or them, but I always love to take a "people-pulse" to see what the climate is like. I'm betting things are different world-wide with the attitude toward Americans than it has been in previous decades.
Oh! We went to the very good World Heritage Site, Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. The excellent movie (that Jazy refused to watch) explained how important the buffalo were to the First People, who used every part of the buffalos they killed. The name technically does not come from the way the buffalo died, but rather a legend of a young brave who was in a tragic accident during one of the buffalo jumps. The Buffalo Jumps were so much work that when the Indians got guns and ponies from Europeans in the mid-1800's, they stopped organizing the labor-intensive jumps. We hiked both the upper and lower cliff paths and enjoyed the strong winds that are native to that area.
Alberta is beautiful! Fields and acres of flowers and grass- so much grass! I'll try to upload some pictures later. We're off to explore for now the campground with a petting zoo, horseshoes, playground, etc.!