Posted: Jul 31, 2016
Coming into Canada the second time I was asked a lot more questions. Was I headed home? Was I going to be staying down there for a while? Whatcha got in the back of the vehicle? I almost felt I was going to be given a limited hall pass: "This guy has five (5) days to get down to the States or else we will find him and ship him south ourselves." But, after all of the questions, I was allowed in with a cheerful, "enjoy your trip."
I like Canada. Every time I have visited I have enjoyed the places and the people. I even like gravy on my fries. There is a measured pace and a type of sanity that has been evaporating out of the U.S. over the past 5 decades. Perhaps it is a population density thing. In 2016 Canada has an estimated million fewer people than the state of California. One comment was made to me regarding the US population... "You have over 300-million people down there and you could only find those two to run for president, eh?" I had to admit to the sad truth.
Canada is huge... Bigger than the US. It is easy to forget about this when "planning" a trip. I had no specific figure in mind when I started the drive back down from Alaska, but after a few days I did some figuring and realized that the quickest route down the Alaska/Canadian highway was 3000 miles! ...And you are still on the West Coast. But there is little traffic and more route options. The roads are in pretty darn good condition the scenery is fantastic. Slow down & enjoy the ride.
I am unsure if this Madonna and Child is locally crafted on that church above or was shipped in, but it is a nice bit of tin work.
Passing now into the Rockies and British Columbia, bits of the the North American plate begin poking up into the air.
This is one big bison and he is letting the vehicles past one by one. When he was in front of my car it was clear he easily outweighed it and towered above the hood. I had other things on my mind and didn't grab the camera. He moved aside & let me pass. When this semi truck came up, Mister Bison stood in front of it far longer just so that the truck driver knew who was boss of this bit of road.
This would be fun for the kiddies if there were anyone around to run it. How it ended up by this shut down truck stop is anyone's guess.
OK time for a bit of geological fun. Ancient ocean bed, hundreds of millions of years old. The section of the Liard river where they are poking up is called the Whirlpool rapids. Beautiful water, Very cool strata to walk over.
This Island in the middle of the river is a place where the layers of ancient ocean floor were bent from the pressure of tectonic plates colliding. Note how on one side they are slopin up from the water and on the other they are sloping down. The strata I was standing on when taking the picture was sloping on a different angle up toward the island.
So what do you do when you are standing on rocks hundreds of millions of years old? Well, shucks... look down! I won't bore you with lots of pictures of rocks. Here are a couple of interesting ones. I found. The white marks quite intriguing.
Here is another with curious white bits, as well as a little embossed man.
This rock has some interesting striations. It appears there was a thin layer of quartz half of which has been broken away.
As you get deeper into this part of the Rockies the strata become bendier.
And then you come to this mountain that looks like it was cut out of a wadded piece of puff-pastry.
This outcropping has a zig, a zag and then another zig. For scale, those little bumps on the top are 60-foot trees. This is big stuff!
Where there are Mountains in British Columbia there are to be found mountain sheep.. Here is a youngster.... Ba-a-a-a-a.
And here is a mountain sheep that's a bit older... whatcha lookin' at?
There were some pretty nifty stratified clouds later on that day.
Here is a sheaf of strata bent up into a curve. These huge mountains and are showing the top side of the strata... I am about 100 feet above the level of the road which you can see a bit of in the foreground.
Look at those layers! Thin, dense layers. Thick, porous layers, with chunks of obsidian embedded. What a story! This rock is about two feet up and down and three feet wide.... About 500 lbs and way up on the side of a hill... it is still there.
Here is a closer view of that big ol' layered rock. Pretty nifty stuff!
On the same hillside there was a rock with this pattern. Black and mustard rippling accross.