Monday, 5 January 2009

Our travelling plans.

As it stands, our contracts here in Waterton are until May 2nd, so all things being well, we'll stay here until then (right now, that seems a veeeery long time....). Lots of people complain about Waterton being boring but we're happy enough here. It's easy to save a lot of money (which we'll need if we want to travel all summer), our jobs are good, the mountains are beautiful and there's plenty of snow. It'd be nice to be able to ski more but we seem to have bad luck in that, every Monday and Tuesday (our days off), we get a chinook, making it too windy to do much outside.

Anyway, we're open to the idea of staying here an extra couple of weeks, depending on our financial situation. Everyone we meet here tells us we must stay for the summer, but to be honest, the quiet, small community of Waterton is what we like. Right now, we have a two-bedroom apartment to ourselves, there's enough hours for us to make decent money and we have the entire park pretty much to ourselves. Although I'm sure it'd be lovely here in summer, that was never our plan.

So our travel plans right now are this; we want to see Jasper (another National Park in Northern Alberta), so we might try and get a Moose tour from Banff to Jasper. This'll mean getting a bus from Pincher Creek to Banff first (probably 4 or 5 hours). Jasper is a lot bigger (and more "commercial") than Waterton and some of the driving round there is meant to be the best in the world. The highway is called the Icefields Parkway and there's glaciers along it, plus lots of wildlife. So it's something we want to do while we're still on this side of the country.

After this, we will probably fly from Edmonton (the capital city of Alberta, a couple of hours from Jasper) to Ottawa. Then we want to work down, going to Toronto, Detroit, then Chicago (Seamus has a lot of family here). Our new plan is to visit some of New England (this has a lot to do with my interest in University campuses) from here, probably flying from Chicago to Boston, then working our way up through to Halifax, Prince Edward Island, then down through Quebec before flying out of Montreal. That's a lot of places in a short time, so a lot of money on trains/buses/flights/hostels. That's why we need to make sure we've saved enough money before we leave Waterton. It some ways it's a shame not to visit any of Northern Canada, but with all due respect, it would cost a lot for not very much. Towns in the North are small and expensive, and although we still really want to see Northern Lights, realistically, our chances are just as high in Finland/Scandinavia in general. Once you get to Canada, you realise just how huge it is, and it's not possible to see it all in a year. I've met Canadian people here who've barely even been out of Alberta in their entire lives (and not because they're "hicks" either). So, we're trying to prioritise taking into account cost and time restraints. Having said that, if anyone has any ideas of places to go (or not to go...), please share!

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