Thursday, August 20, 2015

Aug 20 2015 Great Divide Getting ready in Banff

There were four of us bunked into the one hotel room last night.  I got lucky and won the coin toss and got one of the two beds.  The pull out sofa looked really bad and the cot not much better. 

This morning started early with a typical hotel breakfast of toasted day old bagel and cream cheese, watery orange juice and weak coffee.   

Sean who is one of the tour leaders came in last night and took my advice and made looking into the sick Penske van a priority.   We went out and there was a huge puddle of automatic transmission fluid under the van so he phoned them and within twenty minutes they had a repair truck on site and a quick determination was made to get a new van. 

I got in the big Ford 4X4 16 passenger window van and headed off to Calgary to pick up Rob and the chef.   Just a few miles into the trip there were a bunch of lighted warning signs say that because of paving operations to expect major delays along Highway 1.  So I wheeled the truck on to the Exshaw exit and went over to the 1A.  It is a much slower and winding road but with no delays. 

Rob who is one of the owners of Bike Dreams and Sofia the chef were waiting for me in the Marlboro Walmart with 5 huge shopping carts of groceries and supplies for the trip.  So we spent the next three hours sorting, arranging, assembling and testing equipment.  Every so often we would discover we needed something else and would send Rob back in to get it. 

It was well after 3 by the time I was ready to head back to Banff.   Sofia and I drove back and took the 1A to avoid the paving.  On the way we saw a huge herd of mountain goats alongside the road.  So far I have seen wild turkeys, a black bear and the herd of mountain goats.  The sky was looking pretty threatening and tomorrow looks like a very rainy day.  When we got to the hotel the new Penske was waiting and we transferred  all the stuff into it.

This evening Sean took the crew out to an Irish pub for supper and an organization meeting.  It was a pretty lively discussion as there are a lot of new hands on the crew.   However everyone has a great spirit and I think it is going to be a great trip. 



Kt Rsd said...

Always great to read your blog! Good luck Terry on your latest adventure - as a cycle tour wrangler! It will be good practice for when you come down under to NZ next year as Tour Support Crew!

Anonymous said...

Terry, thanks for blogging this adventure. Looks like the next couple of days will be cool, if not wet also, so it might be nice to be in the van rather than on a bike.

Ken C.