"In every walk with nature one receives more than he seeks."
John Muir

Friday, October 21, 2011

Two Roads Diverged...

Two southerly roads diverged.
Sea to Sky to the west, the other the east.
We had planned on the famous Sea to Sky, noted for its
spectacular mountains. Part of it includes crossing Whistler, the mt venue
for downhill skiing in the recent winter Olympics based in Vancouver.
But, after questioning a local we met while poised at this crossroad,
he asked what we had just thought of the roads we'd been on.
I paled a bit and he admitted that Sea to Sky was
"a lot more turns and higher climbs".
Thus, we chose the other, still a real nail-biter
(that is, when I dared let go of the door handle).

These roads cut right through BC's Provincial Parks and Coastal Mountains.
Moisture from the Pacific Ocean dumps tons of snow which causes avalanches
and rockslides down the steep mountain edges.
Some mountainsides are too steep to carve a road and we passed through
many of these tunnels through the mountains, each named.
This one is "Hell's Gate".

Just to add some extra, though totally unneeded, excitement to the drive,
numerous fully loaded logging trucks shared our road.
In areas of rockslides, sometimes the inner lane of the two was narrowed by
scattered rock piles that still hadn't been hauled off and we somehow had
to find a way to pull to the edge to allow the truck to pass.
These times I closed my eyes and refused to breathe!

This large park area consists of many lakes, waterfalls and parks
fit for rugged camping and hiking.
Scattered and isolated towns have names like Squamish,
Coauihalla and Sasquatch.
We paused for a break in a tiny, quaint village called Hope on the Fraser River.
Lots of history of native peoples who lived here for 1,000's of years before
explorers entered the area, always in search of furs and gold.
The salmon return here in incredible numbers and it is known for excellent fishing.
It was a perfect place to pause and rest our rather jangled nerves.
Shoeless thinks it is perfect for munching down a burger.
Scary roads don't bother him one bit.

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