Thursday, July 29, 2010

Canmore Calgary

We were supposed to go to Lake Louise today, but the weather was raining and foggy, so we altered plans and took off for Calgary, Canmore. As soon as we got out of Banff National Park heading to Calgary the fog lifted and the sun was shining. We stopped at the Calgary Olympic Park first. What a delight to see the 1988 Olympic park is still in use today. Canada did not win any gold medals in the 1988 Olympics, but as time has gone on, they are making a concerted effort to win more and more of the winter games. The Olympic park has added all kinds of buildings and altered the original ski jumps, etc… Everywhere we looked there were children being trained on how to ski jump, there were lessons on luge and ice skating, etc. Children were everywhere. It seems that in the summer month’s mountain biking takes the place of downhill skiing. There were bikers everywhere. AND, they were very young. This first picture is of a ski jump that was used in 1988: The second picture is a luge.

The Calgary fort was rather interesting to me. As the Calgary Stampede was just last week, the town was tearing down all of the entertainment areas. We were not able to get into the stampede area, but a “real cowboy” as Mom Beutler called him, greeted us and encouraged us to turn back. I think the “real cowboy” was enough for Mom as she thought he was quite handsome in his cowboy boots, chaps and hat! I understand that there were over 3 million people here last week! That seems very amazing as the Stampede park was right down town.

The old historic fort at Calgary evidently hosted a reenactment of the old Calgary Mounted Police Days when the Canadian Mounties called “F-Troup” were stationed at Calgary to make peace with the Indians. The fort was not that impressive, but it was fun to hear those who were at the reenactment talk about the “F-troup”. I thought the old television program was just a hoax but we soon learned that there was actually a F-troup. The Chief indian’s name was the same as the name used in the reenactment. “Ze Burglar from Banff” was actually a real person.

Canmore was a city that was put on the map as they participated in hosting the 1988 Olympic games. They are now a very tourist town. Actually the town looks a lot like the town of Banff. We visited the original Canadian Mounted Police station and took some pictures.

We then headed back to Banff out to Johnson lake. What a lovely lake. It was not in my book on places that you must see in Banff, but I am very glad that we went today. I do believe that it is one of my favorite lakes here. We saw a couple of female elk that were majestic. Stephen dunked his head in the mountain stream and we walked around the lake on a well defined trail head

As we left this park and headed down the Bow River Parkway we ran into a great big bull elk. He had 12 points on his rack. He was incredible. The people didn’t seem to bother him at all, he just kept on eating. Both Dad and Steve got out of the car snapping pictures. Then, just about ½ mile down the road we ran across a little black bear and had a great time getting pictures of him…then about 500 feet, we ran into another black bear. Only this one was much bigger.

The Bow River Parkway has to be about the most gorgeous parkway on the face of the earth. It is going to be very difficult to go back to the flat land of Indiana and the same old corn fields after seeing majestic mountains, gurgling rushing streams, bald eagles soaring, Elk bleating, bears, mountain goats, big horned sheep, sunsets reflecting on still waters…

We went downtown Banff to eat tonight at Eddies Hamburger Bar. They were huge hamburgers, made your way, served with sweet potato fries! Last evening Jayna was up all night with an upset stomach, throwing up, etc… and today Steve was not feeling well in his stomach. He didn’t get sick, but just didn’t feel well today. Now tonight Dad is not feeling well… BUT, the hamburger (which we split) was very tasty!

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