Cochrane to Lake Louise and Return

Cochrane to Lake Louise and Return


We drove to Lake Louise hoping the smoke had cleared some but were disappointed to discover it was actually worse than yesterday.  Traffic was terrible and parking was almost non-existent.  We lucked out and found a parking spot less than a block from the lake and ranger information center.  Most people were arriving on the shuttles which went to remote parking lots as far as 5 miles from the lake.  The fare for a round trip shuttle was $10 per person.  We saved $20 and got a primo parking spot.  How lucky can you get?  Of course, we've been losers as much as winners.



Calgary to Banff and Cochrane  -  Buffalo Nations Luxton Museum, Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, Banff Park Museum and Lake Minnewanka

Calgary to Banff and Cochrane - Buffalo Nations Luxton Museum, Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, Banff Park Museum and Lake Minnewanka


We drove directly from Calgary to Banff.  Our first stop was the Buffalo Nations Luxton Museum where we learned more about the First Nation people who inhabited the area.  Each of the museums we have visited featuring exhibits on the First Nation people has provided us additional information which is contributing to a better understanding of the rapid changes and challenges faced by the native people with the arrival of the White man.



Caronport, Saskatchewan to Calgary, Alberta -  Blackfoot Crossing Historical Site

Caronport, Saskatchewan to Calgary, Alberta - Blackfoot Crossing Historical Site

On the way to the Blackfoot Crossing Historical Centre we passed the largest teepee in the world which is located in Medicine Hat.  This teepee was constructed for the 1988 Olympics and moved to Medicine Hat after the games.  It is over 20 stories high and overlooks and ancient buffalo jump which was also the site of a major battle between the Blackfoot and Cree tribes.  We didn't have time to do more than take a quick picture as we drove past.  We wanted to get to Blackfoot Crossing to have ample time to explore the museum dedicated to the Blackfoot tribes.



Caronport, Saskatchewan to Medicine Hat, Alberta   Delayed Due to Car Repair

Caronport, Saskatchewan to Medicine Hat, Alberta Delayed Due to Car Repair


We got an early morning call from Jay at the auto repair shop.  He advised us that the nearest alternator he could locate for our car was in a town 4 hours away but he had arranged to have it put on a truck heading our way and if all went well the alternator would be on hand for installation around 3 p.m.  Jay felt he could have us on the road by 4 or so, provided they didn't send the wrong alternator.  We crossed our fingers and hoped for the best.  We used the time waiting to get laundry done, catch up on the blog, read emails, watch some TV and get a nap before hitting the road again.  Jay called shortly after 4 and our car was ready.  We checked out of the Pilgrim Inn Motel, topped off the fuel tank and bought some sandwiches for the road.  We drove straight through and arrived in Medicine Hat just before 9 p.m.  Everyone in Caronport was very welcoming and helpful.






Regina to Caronport -  Royal Canadian Mounted Police  Depot Sergeant Major's Parade and Car Problems

Regina to Caronport - Royal Canadian Mounted Police Depot Sergeant Major's Parade and Car Problems


We got up early to be able to take in a tour of the Saskatchewan Legislative Building and still get to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Heritage Center for the Sergeant Major's Parade and a tour of the base.  First, we stopped to tour the Saskatchewan Legislative Building.  The legislative building is quite impressive as it is located in a vast park 3 times the size of New York City's Central Park and it stands overlooking Wascana Lake.  Construction began in 1908 and the building was completed in 1912. Its architecture is in the Beaux Arts style and was the tallest building in Saskatchewan for many years.  The exterior is of Manitoba Tyndall stone.  The interior is most impressive as marble from Canada, Italy, Isle of Cyprus and Vermont decorate the entrance and rotunda.  The building's recently renewed copper dome is 56 meters high, The legislative chamber was quite interesting as the chairs for the assembly members sit facing each other on tiered floors and the chairs are movable so if one party loses seats they are moved across the aisle to join the seats of their party.  Additionally, the mace, representing royal authority, sits on the Parliamentary table with the head of the mace  resting upon a beaver pelt and  facing the majority party.  The mace's staff end faces the opposition party.  Chairs for former assembly members and prime ministers line the walls should any former members wish to attend a session of the assembly.  Of course, a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, the Queen of Canada, is prominently hung above the prime minister's chair.  The opposition party is greatly outnumbered by the Saskatchewan Party.



Brandon, Manitoba to Regina, Saskatchewan  The Royal Canadian Mounted Police Heritage Center

Brandon, Manitoba to Regina, Saskatchewan The Royal Canadian Mounted Police Heritage Center


We drove straight through from Brandon to Regina hoping to arrive in time for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sergeant's Major Parade at the RCMP "Depot" Division which provides training for all members of the RCMP.  We arrived in plenty of time since the parade was cancelled due to a Civil Holiday.  The first Monday of August is a national holiday in Canada but without any significant event being commemorated.  We noticed almost every business other than fast food and fuel stops were closed for the holiday.  When we asked the locals what was being celebrated, no one could give us more information other than the Canadian government decided Canadians would get off the first Monday in August resulting in a three day weekend.  Later we learned, some provinces have designated a name for the holiday rather than just call it Civil Holiday.  For example, in British Columbia it is British Columbia Day (what else would they call it).  The RCMP Heritage Center was open.  So, we toured the facility and were impressed with the history and service provided by the RCMP.  We will come back tomorrow to view the Sergeant Major's Parade.







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