Thursday, July 11, 2013

Day 2 Banff to Field

The riders were all pumped this morning as today we are going to ride the Bow Valley Parkway from Banff out to Lake Louise. These 60 kms are some of the most beautiful 60 kms to ride anywhere.  The Parkway is a winding road with the smoothest pavement, incredible scenery, very few cars, no trucks, reduced speed limits, all kinds of wildlife. It is one of my favorite rides anywhere in the world. Ok I am biased.

The weather was very cooperative and we had a beautiful sunny day with almost no wind.  I spotted an elk and a coyote. Liam and Ken T spotted a grizzly bear.
We had lunch in the Lake Louise Plaza parking lot and we had one of the support cars drive the riders up to Lake Louise which is about 10 kms above the main town site.  It is a real gong show up at the lake with all of the tour busses and other tourists. However this is a must see. There is a bike shop in the Plaza which has a great selection of Canada jerseys so I bought a bright red and white jersey.

The extra kilometers down to Kicking Horse came right off of the next day’s ride and it was still only 80 km from Banff. Most of them are downhill as you pass the big grade coming into Field. As I came down the hill which is something like 11% the head wind was so vicious I had to pedal as hard as I could to make any headway.  Then it started to sleet/hail and it just pounded all of the riders.  Luckily it was a short cloud burst.

I had originally planned on staying in Lake Louise but there was a bear warning so the campsite was closed to tents.  So we had to ride on to the Kicking Horse campground in Yoho. Wow was it ever nice. After camping in Tunnel Mtn where it is just crazy with people we had a beautiful grassy site which amazing vistas of all of the mountains.  Riding the extra 20 kms was so worth it. 

A marvelous day topped off with a great supper of barbequed chicken breasts.


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