Monday, January 01, 2007


The first morning of 2007 I was waking up in Banff!

How I got there:

Last night I left Edmonton at 6:15. I was a little afraid about making the trip, since I would be driving alone and it was pitch black outside, and I was afraid that I would be sleepy because of the darkness. Three cans of Coke Zero and two mandarin oranges helped keep me awake, not like I actually felt a narcoleptic attack coming on like I do driving in the city at night.
The thrill of the drive kept me stimulated! First, I had to watch carefully for potential hazards like animals running across the highway. The first rush came as I was watching the tail lights of the 3 cars ahead of me. Suddenly the middle set of lights disappeared!! There was no exit ramp in that area and at first I thought the car had just turned off its lights. Well, it turns out that the car had gone down a hill and then it popped back into view. I thought that was funny.

The second rush came when I was on highway 567 and was going up a twisty part, and I could see a car way up the road, twisting around.

The third rush came when I had my first sight of the mountains. The moon was full and bright and the snow on the peaks glowed. It was awe inspiring!

Problems - not really! I made one stop in Red Deer to top up the gas and visit the loo. Traffic was very light, especially once I got on the #567. Along that road there was a small curve and I went the wrong way but noticed my mistake immediately and was able to correct it. The same thing happened when trying to connect to the #22. I swear, they need to better mark the major junctions in this province!! The weather was great but I probably was still driving too fast for the time of year and being that it was at night. I did slow down once I hit the mountains, because I didn't want to spin out on some black ice.

I arrived at 10:15, just in time to start the celebrating (at the Paddock Pub. We didn't go out to the street for the fireworks, but apparently the streets are packed with people. The mess afterwards was reminiscent of Whyte Ave parties, beer bottles and garbage strewn all over the place.

How I got back:

Taking the route that detoured around Calgary, I arrived in 4 hours. On the way home I missed a few junctions and ended up driving through Calgary and I arrived home exactly 4 hours after leaving Banff. That trip back home was not nearly as fun, and was actually soft of stressful before I finally made it to the QE2. First, traffic was heavy and the wind was gusting and making my little Honda Civic blow about the road. Then, I missed the turn in the road for the highway #1A and ended up on the #1. So I figured I would ride it all the way to Calgary. Then I saw the exit for the #22 to Cochrane, but I couldn't get over in time to exit, so I figured I would stay on the #1 to Calgary. Once I got to Calgary, I was terrified I would somehow miss the connection to the QE2. Oh! and I was panicking as I drove through Calgary becasue the gas guage hasn't moved at all and was still sitting at full. I thought it was broken, but as I got to Deerfoot Trail the needle moved lower so I could relax.

No comments: