I’ll preface this post with this disclaimer: this day was actually kind of a blur. It was a lot more of the same – driving through flat plains – and I think I slept for half the trip.
In the morning, Jess and I brought Remi with us to the lobby where we took advantage of the continental breakfast offered by the hotel. We didn’t linger long, as Jess didn’t really sleep well, since she took the pull-out couch and it was apparently uncomfortable. She was so upset that she ended up having the most energy and took the wheel first.
It was quite the foggy morning, but at least the highway through the prairies is flat and straight. I pretty much slept through the first part, as I was still pretty tired from the long nighttime drive the previous day. After a couple of hours, though, I took over the wheel again.
And so we kept driving, switching a couple of times more and the fog gradually cleared. As we got into Alberta (finally!), we stopped at a gas station where the attendant assured us the landscape would get more interesting closer to Calgary, which was encouraging news for both of us. The flat landscape of the prairies was starting to get to us.
I took the last leg of the journey, the final ~2 hours to our destination (Canmore). This took us through some increasingly hilly terrain, and then around Calgary itself, and again, the U-haul really struggled to make it up the long inclines.
As we got out of Calgary, I spotted mountains! Finally! I was so excited that I even woke up Jess from her nap, haha. We made good time and got into Canmore before dusk; we really did not fancy driving through the mountains in the dark with a big U-haul and trailer.
A big challenge for us was that our hotel was located along a dense area of tiny roads with lots of roadside parking. Navigating it with our huge truck really was not easy. Eventually, though, we found our hotel, checked in, and took the Jeep off the trailer in anticipation of our day of exploring tomorrow. Then we parked, which was an accomplishment on its own. Basically, Jess had turn a very tight corner while backing in to a relatively tight parking space. At first, she said we should just ask one of the hotel staff if they could do it, but I encouraged her to try…and she did it! We even took a picture:
Anyway, we had enough time to unpack, rest a bit, and freshen up. We found a list of restaurants nearby in a brochure, and Jess was so enthusiastic about a Brazilian BBQ restaurant called Gaucho Brazilian BBQ that I couldn’t refuse.
It was a bit of a late dinner, but totally worth it. We basically opted for the endless meat option, where it was all-you-can-eat meat. Servers come to your table every so often with a different type of barbecued meat. In-between, you could help yourself to an assortment of sides, like salads, beans and rice, etc. Everything was delicious and nothing was disappointing. If you are full and don’t want the servers to come by with more meat, you can flip a little cow-shaped sign from green to red (but let’s be honest, the meat here was so good, you’d likely want to keep getting offered meat until the very end).
By the time we finished our meal, it was pretty late and Jess got drunk off of two drinks. Admittedly, they were strong drinks, but I was still doing just fine. And really, when a 5’2 Asian girl can outdrink you, that’s pretty impressive.
So, we hopped into a taxi and made our way back to our hotel, where we changed and passed out in bed.
Travel Path: Regina > Canmore
Distance Covered: 875 km
Distance to Whitehorse: 2,228 km