Wednesday, September 26, 2007

We Made It!

We rolled a bit slowly through Canada as we enjoyed the scenery of Jasper, Banff, and Kootenay National Parks. We took the Icefields Parkway and climbed near glaciers and beautiful lakes. We ended up staying in Lake Louise, which was beautiful as well. We plan on making a trip back at some point, maybe to ski.

We arrived safely in Kalispell, with the trailer intact, on Tuesday evening. We're moving and unpacking a few boxes and then we'll hit the road again to visit a variety of family and friends and take advantage of the time that we have before I start here at Northridge Lutheran.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Getting there...

Internet access hasn't been as readily accessible as I had hoped on this trip. We were supposed to have it on Saturday night and I could see three different wi-fi hotspots from our room, but couldn't get a connection to any of them. We have been moving right along and making pretty good time.
  • Thursday: We left Wasilla at about 6:00 p.m. after getting the last of the stuff loaded into the car and dropping the keys and the garage door openers off at the realtors. We drove as far as Glennallen, AK and stayed there for the night.
  • Friday: We got up bright and early and headed for Tok, AK to have breakfast at Fast Eddie's. Each of us had the most enormous omelets we'd ever seen. Which was good, since we didn't eat again until we got to Whitehorse, YT late at night, after many miles and kilometers of bumpy roads.
  • Saturday: Up early again and driving before breakfast. We stopped for a snack in Watson Lake, YT, and then continued on to Muncho Lake, BC. I had hoped to spend the night there, but the hotel was full. So we ventured onward to Fort Nelson, BC, where we finally ate a real meal and slept.
  • Sunday: We slept in a bit after the early mornings and because the Steelers were on TV. Watched the game and then headed out on quite good roads, past the end of the Alaska Highway, and on to Grande Prairie, AB, where we spent the night.
  • Monday: We're up and moving out this morning. We may make it all the way to Kalispell or we may stop somewhere between here and there, as it's about 700 miles.
In the post above are some pictures of some bison, a bear family, and other things that we saw on the way.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Route Choice

You may notice that the route I posted below has a diversion to take us to British Columbia Highway 93 and US Route 93. There is a reason for that. When Ron and I took the U-Haul down, we wanted to follow Alberta Highway 2 and cross where it becomes US Route 89. This seemed like a good combination of not too many extra miles and a fairly straight and flat road. We had debated it a good bit and come to this conclusion. Then we'd swing around the east side of Glacier National Park and end up in Kalispell. This is the route that Google Maps proposes.

But...after driving for 21 straight hours, when we got to this border crossing at 7:10 a.m., the US Border Patrol wouldn't let us cross. They didn't like our choice of route and didn't think it made sense to them. As they didn't have an X-Ray machine at that particular crossing, they told us we had to go to one of the two in the "area" that did. We we drove an extra 187 miles to the nearest crossing to the west, where we had no problem getting through (and they didn't X-Ray our truck). This trip, Laura and I are just heading for the crossing to begin with, it's a beautiful drive and takes us straight into Kalispell.

So...what's the plan?

Laura and I haven't had too detailed of a plan recently. We've been running around taking care of lots of details and saying good-bye to lots of folks. We're staying with some friends near Wasilla and going over to the house every day to pack the last few items and organize the paperwork for it to sell. The good news is that our house was only on the market for 3 weeks and we had a buyer. We're under contract, we have our home inspection report back, and things are looking good. We're hopeful that we'll be able to close the sale in the next couple of weeks.

Today (Thursday, September 20) is the day we're hoping to begin the trek to Montana. I already made the trip down there with a U-Haul with our stuff. Now Laura is going with me and we're going to drive the Explorer down with the snowmachine/snowmobile trailer. We won't get an early start, but hopefully we can make it to Tok tonight. Since we'll have the camera and laptop, there may even be some blog posts with pictures. If the weather stays yucky like it's been in Wasilla the last few days, there may not be anything worth taking a picture of.

When we get there, we have a very nice townhouse to stay in. Some snowbirds have offered us their home to stay in while they winter in Tucson, AZ. It will provide us with a great opportunity to get settled and take our time as we search for a house of our own. We're very grateful to them.

View Larger Map

Where are we going?

Here are some pictures of Kalispell and the surrounding area that I took when I visited in June.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Football Fans

There was a survey recently reported on in this article that showed the Pittsburgh Steelers have the highest percentage of female fans. Green Bay was second. I've always said that the Steelers and Packers have a different kind of fans. Does this prove the difference?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Halfway there!

A friend from Good Shepherd (Ron) and I are driving most of Laura and my worldly possessions in a U-Haul truck (with Laura's car following closely behind on a trailer) from Wasilla to Kalispell. We've seen some great wildlife, including caribou, bison, moose, and deer; everything has gone well so far. We spent the night in Fort Nelson and are just about to head out. We'll finish up the Alaska Highway today and head into the big cities of Edmonton and Calgary.