Thursday 31 August 2017

Unlucky thirteen?

Parrish & Heimbecker Limited train number 13 at a grain terminal at Oban, Saskatchewan August 12, 2017. Parrish & Heimbecker is a grain company. This was on a side track near a modern terminal. It looked to be smaller than the usual train engine. I got a side view that I declined to post as the paint scheme is black so the side view does not stand out that well.

I saw the Mobil Grain train engines the prior day at Girvin, Saskatchewan. I like the look of these ones. Mobil Grain is a Saskatchewan company involved in agriculture. Saskatchewan seems to have a more interesting variety of stuff than Alberta. I usually see something interesting, well interesting to me, when I take a trip there. 

Wednesday 30 August 2017

Going-To-The-Sun Road from the Visitor Center to The Loop

I had a camera mounted on the motorcycle and tried some video. Part of my quick trip into Montana August 26, 2017.

No fear

Heights bother me.

August 26, 2017 I took my motorcycle over the Going-To-The-Sun Road in Glacier National Park in Montana from St. Mary to West Glacier. I had tried to take this road in the summer of 2015. It was closed due to a forest fire however you could go partway up on the west side. I made it halfway up the road to the visitor center and had to stop and turn back. My fear of heights would not let me go further.

This time I made it. I took the road from St. Mary all the way to West Glacier. I got some hazy photos, the haze was due to the smoke from forest fires in British Columbia. From the Visitor Center to "The Loop" the road hangs on the side of the mountain with some steep and sheer drops. I have no photos from there because I was too nervous to pull over on the lookouts to take any photos. The speed limit in that section is 25mp/h.

If you are ever in this area and heights do not bother you then definitely take this road. The views are spectacular. The road is paved. I was on a motorcycle and it cost me $25USD at the park gate to take the road. The pass was good for seven days. It is worth it.

The road from east to west.

Saint Mary Lake.

Views from the Visitor Center. There is a building with a big parking lot at the Visitor Center where you can take a number of trails. This is kind of the highest point/mid point of the road.

Tuesday 29 August 2017

How fast can you go on a 2006 Suzuki Burgman 650?

Fast enough that the Blood Indian Police requested that my presence was required for an unscheduled mandatory discussion regarding my apparent disregard for the posted limit. The Kainai Nation, or Blood Tribe, has a large reserve in Alberta that runs right up against Cardston, Alberta. Which is where they caught me. In my defense the motorcycle has a digital display with a black readout on a greyish background. If the sun is shining right on it I cannot see it so there are times I have no idea how fast I am going.

I am always polite with law enforcement. It may not be the greatest job in the world and I want to be one of those easy to deal with types. Why make their day worse? Being reasonably cooperative is less hassle all around. After digging out the standard paperwork and handing over my license I was let off with no fine and a polite request to drive the limit. He was nice enough to let me get a photo of his unit. I can recommend getting pulled over by the Blood Indian Police and I give them a positive review for their professionalism and not fining me.

. . . further road trip notes

The road trip from last weekend got cut short by a day. I do not really have a budget for these excursions, more like a guideline. Last Saturday from Pincher Creek, Alberta I ventured into Montana over the Going-To-The-Sun Road through Glacier National Park. It was a fantastic day to be out on a motorcycle. It was a bit less of a great day for taking photos due to the smokey haze from the forest fires in British Columbia and with no clouds in the sky it was too bright. Due to the exchange I ended up spending a bit more than I intended. After arriving in West Glacier I drove back along the southern boundary of the park to East Glacier, then to St. Mary's, then crossed the border at Carway, then through Cardston, Alberta on my way home. A long ride in one day.

Was it worth it? Definitely. I will plan better next time.

Cobbling this part of the trip into a post is a current work in progress and should appear at a future date.

On the road again . . .

I had grand road trip plans. Finished work on Friday August 26, 2017 and hit the road with a vague outline of where I was going.

South from Calgary on Highway 2 where I stopped for a quick bite in Nanton, Alberta. I will be avoiding that particular establishment again. All I will say is that the meal was adequate.

From Nanton west on Highway 533 to Highway 22 then south to where it met Highway 3. West on Highway 3, otherwise known as the Crowsnest Highway, to Pincher Creek, Alberta where I decided to call it a night. The motel decided to give me the handicapped room. Come to think of it, on my prior road trip into Saskatchewan the hotel in Saskatoon gave me a handicapped room. Maybe there is something people are not telling me. 

I grab my stuff from the motorcycle and do a quick inventory in my room. Phone, cameras, batteries, back up battery chargers for my phone, iPad, boots, assorted cables for assorted electronic gear, jacket, helmet, and . . . something is missing. Back to the bike where I confirm that I left my somewhat carefully packed backpack of clothes at home. Which was kind of funny as I had my travel bag that had soap, shampoo, razor, and other related stuff with me. I thought my small backpack of clothes was in the storage space under my seat. That would be no. On the bright side there was a Walmart still open and I bought some clearance items so I had something clean to wear the next morning. Sometimes you have to roll with things. Back to the motel where I needed the front desk to get the television working in my room. The noise in the motel managed to die down around eleven so I could get some sleep. Not the most auspicious start to a road trip.

Monday 28 August 2017

Prairie architecture August 26, 2017

Spotted on the way to St. Mary's, Montana. I believe this area is home to the Blackfeet.

Priddis Church, Priddis, Alberta July 26, 2017

Charles Priddis donated the land for this church that was built in 1904 and is still in use today. This is not far from Calgary.

Sunday 27 August 2017

Hi-Way Cafe/Pot-Hole Tavern August 11, 2017

Part of the fun of a road trip is stopping in different places. I happened to be in Eyebrow, Saskatchewan and hungry enough for something to eat. I ordered a hamburger and it was very good. The patty was big and homemade. If for some reason you find yourself here stop in.

The patio is sectioned off with a chain link fence. 

I think the same lady looked after the front and did the cooking. They also had about five kinds of homemade pie on hand. I regret not ordering any.

Saturday 26 August 2017

Bird's Eye View School 1909 - 1960, Saskatchewan August 11, 2017

This is north of Parkbeg, Saskatchewan. I did not know this was going to be on the road I was taking to Darmody, Saskatchewan. There is not much in Parkbeg or Darmody. There is nothing nearby for miles at the school either.

I took a peek inside the door. It looked too unsafe to venture any further.

Friday 25 August 2017

Neglected relationships

I have not been paying as much attention to the motorcycle as I should. After work I will make amends. The weather looks grand this weekend and I shall take a change of clothes and end up in whatever direction the bike takes me and end up home on Sunday.

Hague Ferry, Saskatchewan

The last of my six ferry crossings in one day in Saskatchewan on July 15, 2017. The Hague Ferry is a nice spot crossing the South Saskatchewan River. This was approximately eight at night. This was the last ferry I took thinking I had completed my quest to take all of the ferries in Saskatchewan. About half an hour down the highway I realized that I missed one. So at the end of the day I was eleven for twelve for Saskatchewan ferries.

The line of rock in the water is deliberately placed there. They dredge the river where the ferry crosses and place the rock to the side. It helps raise the water level for the ferry. When you cross the river on the ferry the river looks shallow. Due to the illusion it is likely deeper than it appears. Five of the six ferry operators were nice guys. 

Thursday 24 August 2017

The beauty of stained glass

Anyone who reads this site knows that I have a weakness for churches. There is no particular reason, I just enjoy seeing them. I have not attended on a regular basis in many years. Is there a God? Possibly. I do not have those answers. I feel there is one. As I get older I feel like I should attend church. Topics for other days. Regardless I like running across churches in small towns and very rural areas. There is a lot of beauty in places like this.

This is a very nice spot that I am increasingly regretting not revisiting. I will have to make a return trip.

A few minutes at Sheep River Falls August 19, 2017

Sheep River Falls is a little over an hour from Calgary, Alberta just west of Turner Valley, Alberta. The road into it is paved and it is a nice run on a motorcycle. The falls are a short walk from the parking lot.

Wednesday 23 August 2017

The only known structure of its kind in Saskatchewan

This pump house was built in 1906. Built to provide water for horses that hauled grain to Girvin. It also supplied water for personal use. The tower part is a smaller version of the traditional railway water towers that were common across the prairies. The pump house was a later addition. Water filled a tank at the top of the tower. It fell out of use when horses were no longer the primary transportation for farms. It is on the register of historic places.

Visited August 11, 2017.

Tuesday 22 August 2017

In my little old sod shanty on the plain

Replica sod house in Tompkins, Saskatchewan. Even if it was a replica I had to stop. How often do you get to see a sod house? I stopped here on August 10, 2017 on an impromptu road trip.

A sod house was the first home for many settlers until you could get something better. The sign out front said to come in and sign the guest book.

It was small and cramped and not a straight line in the place. Places like this were home to many. They were probably warm since the walls are pretty thick. Your house would have natural camouflage as it would blend into the landscape. I wonder if anyone ever "lost" their house . . .

I had relatives that still used a water dipper many years ago. I have drank from one of these.

Solar and wind powered clothesline and privy outside.

Monday 21 August 2017

Ukrainian Orthodox Mission of St. Peter and St. Paul 1934

Krydor, Saskatchewan July 15, 2017. The construction of the church was approved in 1934, it was not completed until 1945. I admire the perseverance. There is a sign in front detailing the history of the church. From what I could find I believe it is still being used. Krydor itself is practically a ghost town.