Alberta and BC 2009


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I did one day of touring of Calgary while I was in the area. First up, I wanted to go to Calgary Tower. However, it was a grey, overcast day in the morning, so I went to the Glenbow Museum instead for a few hours (not pictured). Upon coming out of the Glenbow, I was greeted by a much better scene - clear blue skies! So I went up to the top of the tower. You can see the Rockies in the distance.
Facing due south. The Saddledome! Turns out the Flames were playing in the afternoon, and I forgot completely about it, otherwise I would have tried to see the game! I thought they were playing in the evening, and I was up in Red Deer at that time visiting my brother. Ah well.
Looking straight down from the Calgary Tower. I was the only one up there, quiet day! Then I hit the Calgary Olympic park for a bit. I didn't bring any clothing to make me even partly suitable to ski (only had my winter jacket - no warm socks, gloves, toque, waterproof pants, etc...), so I simply wandered around. You can see the ski jumps in the distance.
They were running bobsled runs when I was there. These things move VERY fast! Then walked around Bow River Park for a little.
Big thick chunks of ice in the water. The next day, on the road to Banff from Calgary. It's only an hour or so drive, and probably one of the greatest drives you can do in Canada (for a major highway). You leave Calgary amongst lightly rolling hills and farmers fields with the Rockies in the distance. Slowly the fields give away to trees and larger hills and the Rockies come more and more in view. Finally, you start driving through a mountain pass on the way to finding Banff nestled amongst massive mountains.  Absolutely gorgeous scenery. My oversized go kart of a car. I missed my Mazda (and winter tires). I had forgotten what a nightmare Alberta roads were. The highways were fine, but anything else? Have fun!
A picture of downtown Banff. It's snowing now, but just lightly. Enough to start obscuring the mountains though. Still in Banff, another mountain.
And another. About 45-60 minutes away (depending on weather...) is another stop, Lake Louise. The snow was falling harder here, and it was so quiet you could actually hear it when it hit the trees and such. I love that feeling of calm and peace, it's rare to get nowadays.
What the lake looks like on a clear day! It's still not as recognizable as it is during the summer months though, with it's turquoise green lake and mountains in the background. There is a massive hotel on the Lake, but nothing else. You have to go up a winding 4km mountain road to get here, and it is so very quiet up here. They had cleared a bit of the ice (the snow is ~1ft deep at least normally) for some ice skating.
I wandered out on the ice. Inside the hotel, very fancy. Another great pastime up here, cross country skiing. There were also a few people snowshoeing around.
The front of the hotel.
They also had a horse drawn sleigh going around. Love the pure white snow.
Now in Nanaimo! Got up early to catch a ferry to Vancouver to see a Canucks game with my parents. Beautiful day to start. On the ferry. It was 5C or so, but not a lot of people outside enjoying the sun. Another ferry at the Nanaimo port. Smaller than the one we were on.
Crossing the Strait of Georgia Clouds unfortunately started rolling in. A little baby ferry!
And then off to GM Place, home of the Canucks! The pre-game warmup. We were top row! Rudolph the red-nosed zamboni.
Nice and clean Anthems Opening faceoff
And game on! Fin came up to our section to beat on his drum and eat a few children. A couple close calls in the first period.
2nd Period, Luongo! Of all people, Kesler decided to get in a fight.
Needless to say, Kesler didn't win The two aliens that entertained Predator players in the penalty box all game. They were great (and now have made highlights across Canada). 2-0 after the 2nd, and 4-1 was the final for the Canucks. They outplayed Nashville the entire game, great game! A great Christmas present, seeing the Canucks play (and WIN!).
   
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Description: My trip home for the Christmas holidays in 2009. I went to Alberta for 3 days for visit my brother in Red Deer and to tour around for a few days. Then off to Nanaimo, with a trip to Vancouver to see the Canucks play!
Location: Calgary, Banff, Lake Louise, Vancouver

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