We were touched to hear from the truck’s “Daddy” Michael Bocklet while we were on the road. He has been making trucks like ours for 30 years and retired at Christmas. He is now travelling through Canada and Alaska with his wife Henny, handing the reins of his company over to Gabriel his son who we have been working with. They arrived in Halifax 2 months before us but have a different route, so we caught up with them in Edmonton. After our truck being such an unusual sight in Canada with lots of photos and questions about being asked, it was strange to see a very similar one in the campsite. We had a great evening of food, comparing routes, travels and “slowly relaxing” into retirement stories (both Michael and Steve were on the email to work that afternoon). We waved goodbye to them the follow morning to see the “sites” of Edmonton.
The girls and I had a interesting time at the Science Museum in Edmonton, while Steve stocked up for the mountains. We then decided on a different cultural experience compared with the last 5 weeks. We headed off to what was once the biggest mall in the world for a movie and supper.
After all the flat of the last week we were ready for some mountains, so we headed west for the Rockies. We could see them for miles away and were thrilled to see a flock of big horn sheep and a male elk with massive antlers in the first few kilometres.
Camping that night was beside a milky blue glacial river. We spent our time in Jasper hiking beside azure lakes, deep canyons, powerful waterfalls, milky rivers and Steve and Alisha trying for more fish. I spent my time simultaneously keeping my eyes out for bears (with excitement in the truck and trepidation when on foot) and the stunning mountain views.
At the town of Jasper, Lucy was thrilled to spot a massive totem pole and learn of the story behind it. The national parks in Canada have great booklets for children explaining the wildlife and culture of the region, which the girls have been thoroughly enjoying. That night we made bannock, a bread much like trudilnik (for all you Czechs) cooked on a stick over a fire. They had learnt about it the previous evening at the fireside talk about bears.