We had a stunning drive through the Rockies, stopped briefly at Lake Louise and Banff and even caught a glimpse of the Saskatchewan at its source as it bored through rocks and ravines (Mike says not paddleable, I say more practice!). After a couple of days in Rocky Mountain House sorting cars and kit (again), getting last fresh supplies and even making time for an interview with a local paper it was time to set off. Just one midnight phone job interview and we could go! (Cue apocalyptic rain, wolves howling, moose calling and bears woofing in the background…)
This is the midsection of the boat with our 2 big bags lashed in place.
We decided to try and find an island in the river for our first night wild camping and 30 km downstream we thought we’d found the place. On closer inspection a multitude of animal tracks from the small to the terrifying persuaded us to move on… but we found another island just beyond, made a fire and camped in the beech trees.
Would you camp here? Well we did!
We’ve now had 5 days on the river and made it past Edmonton to Fort Saskatchewan – about 340km downstream from our starting point at RMH. We’re making use of proper campgrounds where we can and wild camping everywhere else. Cooking on a fire mostly and filtering water from the river.
Dry firewood is in abundance and we’re getting pretty good at starting and cooking on an open fire.
Slinging food from trees is great in principle but quite a lot trickier in practice…
Cougars may just be even more scary than bears.
Who we’ve seen:
Bald eagles, golden eagles, falcons, pelicans, loony ducks and many other birds we can’t name yet.
Many beavers, and their handiwork.
Mosquitos flies and fishes!
Who we’ve heard…
Bears, wolves, coyotes, cats and one bird that has accompanied us the whole way singing the first few notes of the snowman… as have we!
Thanks go to:
Jess and Jake for our brilliant week at Sunwolf
Johan and Daniela At Riverview campground
Simon for running errands back home – we owe you!
The staff at MEC Edmonton (pass a city without a trip to MEC?)
The lovely people at the Lions site for all their help getting us up the riverbank