Monday, September 7, 2015

My Take On The First Week…

We have been on the road for about a week now and although the weather has been rainy and soggy we are still enjoying our adventure. Andrew and the girls have all put together great recaps of the first week’s adventures - see the other blog posts on this site. I think my highlight of the trip has been our visits to Telegraph Cove – whale watching and seeing the bear just wondering the town was amazing – the town was so tiny and it seems like it is stuck back about 50 years, which I find really charming. Our ferry boat ride from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert was also amazing, it was one of the nicest days we have had and it felt like a little cruise, we had a delicious outdoor lunch on the deck, the girls met some friends on the boat and were super happy to play and explore the boat on their own. Since there was not too many places they could go they had free reign to explore and be on their own. After the ferry boat we arrived in Prince Rupert, which is a little port town in Northern BC, there is not much to this little town, but the day we spent here the weather was finally nice enough to hang out outside and although I would have loved to find a great hike or explore the mountains, Andrew and I decided this was the day we needed to reorganize and clean the camper, spread things out and let our gear dry out. We still did get time explore the waterfront area of the town and buy some fresh fish for dinner. 

Andrew and I enjoying lunch and wine on the ferry to Prince Rupert

We only spent one full day in Prince Rupert then headed north again for the long drive up to Stewart, BC and Hyder, AK. We were about half way through the trip driving through Terrace, BC and the check engine light came on in the truck. Luckily, we were in Terrace and this is the biggest town between Prince Rupert and Stewart and there was a Ford dealership there – the light literally went on right after we passed the dealership. We made a 2 hours pit stop at Ford to have the mechanics do a bunch of tests and fixed a troubled computer chip and then sent us on our way, unfortunately once we drove off about 15-20 minutes later the light came back on. They seemed to think that the light was a result of a dirty sensor or a computer issues, so our anxiety is a bit more under control knowing it has been checked out. 

The rest of the drive was fairly uneventful, we made the turn to head up the Alaskan Highway and on the desolate road we saw 5 bears either on the side of the road or crossing the highway. We also were amazed by the huge glaciers that are on the sides of the mountains that surround the road. After the long day on the road we found a tiny little campground in the town of Stewart. Even though the campground is in the middle of the town it is still surrounded by trees and we have a spot on a small creek. The population in Stewart is 699 and the town is about 2 blocks long. This is why we have come here, we are on this crazy journey to see all we can in this beautiful country and it is fascinating to see how others outside of our Ballard bubble live. The town is small and simple but it has everything that anyone needs: a post office, a grocery store, a specialty grocery store and a few small shops and restaurants.

Bear Glacier near Stewart, BC

My favorite part of this trip so far has been seeing the different aspects of all the different towns we have popped into. Whether it’s a small coastal town like Telegraph Cove or tiny Stewart surrounded by enormous mountains. It is really cool to see how differently people live. We are still trying to figure out how we are living in this little camper of ours while we struggle with the new routines (or lack there of), shuffling gear in and out before we do anything, coming up with a school schedule that works and doesn’t enlist groans and frowns every time the subject comes up and for me, specifically, figuring out how to get a work out in that raises my heart rate to keep my mood up and my anxiety down. I have figured out how to do a few yoga poses in the center of the camper while I make my tea – but it’s a little weird for Siena considering its in also her bedroom. We’re working the kinks out and hopefully the weather will improve so our adventures and routines can be more outside than inside. We had a lovely campfire last night, and we are hoping the bears will still come out to eat at the river even if its raining. There are ups and downs of the trip and the main thing is that we are all together, working as a family as we embark on each new experience. 

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