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nomad adventures "bike, paddle and adventure - that´s what life is all about!" emma & scott

From pedals to paddles!

CANADA | Wednesday, 1 August 2007 | Views [1056] | Comments [9]

Hey, we're back again !

2000 km completed by cycle and 1000 completed via train, we find ourselves (and our very stinky clothes) on the West Coast of northern BC in Prince Rupert, amid the rainforests, huge trees, and low-lying clouds (we are unlikely to complain about heat anymore...). We will now exchange our spandex, bike shoes, and pedals for life-jackets and paddles as we embark on a 10 day kayak expedition in Gwaii Haanas National Park on the Queen Charlotte Islands, a very remote and, some say, mystical set of islands.

We just got off a two day, 18 hour train ride across Canada where we finally relaxed and mostly just ate. (The train conductor could not believe two humans could eat this much). We composed a few notes while on the train and here they are ...

Among the places we Nomad's have slept in recent days are: alpine lakes with cirques and glaciers, turquoise colored rivers, alongside a busy railroad track in a field of purple fireweed, a road-side picnic area, a closed and gated campground (we had it all to ourselves-- for free!), a city park that was closed at 11 pm (but we set up our tent and climbed in at 10.45, that's OK, right?), a ski guide's luxury condo at Lake Loiuse (see below), and the baseball diamond in the (overpriced) city of Banff (after dark, of course). Some other random adventures/stories follow.

Since our last update, we left Fernie and rode north through the spine of the Canadian Rockies on gravel roads, XC ski trails, and single track. We have had some long and epic days, some up to 140 km on dirt roads and single track (not recommended for those of you with sensitive butts :-)

Happily no injuries to report - niether to our bikes or to us (Emma's knee is doing great, thanks for your concerns!). We have survived extreme weather as expected: hot desert-like temps, frost on the tent, and awesome displays of lightning, and pelting balls of hail. At Yoho National Park we stopped to do a hike and one evening Scott was watching far away lightening bolts hit a large glacier and ridge. He was rudely interupted when Emma came running back to camp while being followed by a wall of ice pouring from the sky (hail!), as she yelled -- as if describing an enemy attack -- "It's coming ! ! ! " Scott was pelted and wet within seconds before he even reached the tent's zipper.

On our way to Lake Loiuse a road biker passed us and started chatting. He asked if we had a place to stay that night in Lake Loiuse and before we could answer he offered his futon, a shower, and a pasta dinner. Before riding away he confirmed the obvious: "you guys drink beer, right?" The kindness of strangers strikes again. Thanks Bill !

Wildlife Update: About 10 days ago we rode a beautiful and little-travelled forest road and came across a Mamma black bear and her cub. They were only 20 meters ahead on the road and when we saw them (only a second after they first smelled us - they have poor sight, but can smell really well), they took off up the road and then across, giving us an awesome encounter. They say never come between a mom and her cub, but this mom left her cub and started running away first, not even turning to check on the little one ! ....Two days later, we were at a visitor center looking out over a grassy plain with 20 other people and a grizzly bear turned up and put on a show - how cool ! ....

"Incoming !" We woke up early one day and saw a huge moose in our campsite. We grabbed the camera and starting taking pics. Then he bounded through the campsite, brushing tents, and waking up all the campers. The only other guy awake to see this yelled "Incoming!" as we watched stunned campers start to unzip their tents! .... As we're spending most of the time worrying about bears, a little squirrel snuck up right under our nose while we were reading a book in the shade and silently ate through our dry bag and took our bread and other rations. Not so happy with these types of encounters...

We recently stopped to do another hike, an overnight backpacking trip into one of BC's most famous parks: Mt Robson. We rode 8 km of single track (legally !) with our gear to get there, then loaded our small day packs with the absolute bare (and bear) essentials for a backcountry over night: sleeping bags, tent, pad, cold food and clothes (no stove, too heavy!). We headed up through old growth cedar forest and thundering waterfalls to reach the Berg Lake. It's name comes from the icebergs that calve off the adjacent glacier and float through the turquoise waters. What an amazing evening !

We are running out of space and attention span, so we will wrap this up. We did forget to mention the incredible Icefields Parkway, billed as one of the World's Most Beautiful Road. All 230 km lived up to it's billing, but it's better you view the pictures than read our adjectives describing it -- See our gallery.

So we will be off paddling for the next 10 days, so expect an update when our ferry lands on the north part of Vancouver Island. Then we will be embarking on the home-stretch: a last cycle to the West Coast Trail - a 7 day wilderness Hike on the (wet and) wild West Coast of Vancovuer Island

Thanks and till next time: happy travels

PS: See "cycling bc 3" photo gallery for relevant pics....oh, we also added 5 new photos at the end of "cycling bc 2" gallery (we couldn't upload them previously).

PPS: to Scott's Mom: If you notice a black eye in the photos, don't worry. It was not Emma (I promise), I just lost a fight with a bungy cord :)

Tags: Adventures




hej på er!
Vilka fina bilder! supervackert! Här är allt bra, jag ska ut och segla nästa vecka, det blir mitt lilla äventyr! Åker till Berlin imorgon och sedan vidare till Polen på söndag där jag ska mönstra på skutan.
kramar från susanna

  susanna Aug 2, 2007 4:52 AM


Provar igen.

  Mamma Aug 2, 2007 4:59 AM


Fantasktiska bilder! Och vilka äventyr. Paddla lugnt nu! (Ulf skrev så trevligt till er, men jag kan inte hitta hans kommentar. Konstigt.Inte min heller, vad gör jag för fel? Jag skriver ju i koden och trycker på post.) Puss från Mamma

  Mamma Aug 2, 2007 5:00 AM


It sounds like an amazing adventure that you guys are having! I am jealous and extremely impressed, have fun and keep the blogs coming:-).

  claire Aug 2, 2007 8:53 AM


Keep going guys! Amazing stories and truly inspiring!! Going out for a weeks sailing tomorrow, with Christian Boye. Not much for comparing...

Take care!

  Mark Aug 2, 2007 3:38 PM


Trevligt att läsa om era äventyr, fortsätt att ha kul! Nu borde det iaf va lugnt med björnar ett tag om ni ska paddla ;-) Själv har börjat jobba och har dessutom dragit på mig löparknä efter icebug24, dubbelt elände ;-)

/Peter Hägglund

  Peter Hägglund Aug 2, 2007 9:07 PM


Hej på er!
Man behöver ju inte fråga om ni har det bra direkt, det framgår ganska tydligt av hemsidan. Fantastiskt äventyr!! Ta det lugnt på sjön bara! Hinner Scott hem till Norrlandsknäcket ?? Ska du tävla med någon?
Synes till hösten

  Per Liljeholm Aug 4, 2007 6:48 PM


glad to hear you are fine. Fred the old bike rider from Cultus Lake

  fred ross Aug 5, 2007 2:01 PM


Emma, how do you manage to look so beautiful in all these pictures? Cant say the same about the bearded man next to you!

What an awesome trip you guys are taking, your narratives are so awesome and exciting to read. Glad the bears are all behind you(I hope). CAnt wait to hear about the long paddle. Better yet cant wait to see you both.....love me

  acole Aug 7, 2007 11:51 PM

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