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  • Day67

    Gallery, Rafting and Elk in Jasper!

    August 21, 2019 in Canada ⋅ ⛅ 75 °F

    Gosh darn, we had an overcast, looked like it would rain at any time, sort of day. And it was a cold morning; one of our coldest; I could see my breath.

    We decided to do a little more sightseeing in town and then try the river in the afternoon while Kristi and Steve sprinted another mountain trail. The temperature warmed up as the morning wore on so we drove back to town and strolled up to gallery and museum area. This town is so clean, lots of cute buildings and nice! Some gorgeous, recently built buildings, and the gallery is in one of them.

    It is one of those municipal buildings that is home to the library, not for profit cultrural programs, and the gallery. A (green) building with lots of natural light, glass, stone, light woods, and stainless steel. (I can't believe I did not take a picture of it!) Loved the gallery, small, all local artists, and mostly watercolors or acrylics. And the subject was usually something to do with the Jasper mountain and lake scenery.

    The featured artist had a really nice series on the elements of art! Hanging pieces of her work that spoke to line, shape, color, etc. And a number of other regular scenery pieces. Cheryl Potter. Liked her work enough that I bought a small print to take home as a memory peice. Meanwhile Tom (very patiently) enjoyed the sun on a park bench outside.

    Walked back to the busy retail area and had lunch at the Jasper Brewing Company prior to our rafting adventure. Met the tour and they bussed us out to the "put in" spot. What I didn't quite understand was that while they did provide wet suits (the river is glacial water) we had to use the school bus as the dressing room. So anyone with out a swim suit, and that was most if us, needed to strip down to your underwear to put on the wet suit. Interesting. Some of "us" look better in their underwear than others....especially the twenty somethings!

    Safety discussion and we jumped into the raft, 7 of us plus the guide. Learned a lot, Class 1 is essentially moving water, versus say a lake. This was a rafting trip for beginners and we did quite a bit of Class 1 which pretty much means even if you dont paddle you are moving. We did get several sections of Class 2, but mostly so the guide could make sure we all got a faceful of glacial water! Reminder: Tom does not like water, especially cold water! At one slower part of the river we all had the chance to get out of the raft and take a dip in the river. I took up the offer figuring its not often I will be in a glacial river with a wetsuit on, and let myself slip in. Cold! The wet suits were sleeveless, so I definitely felt the temperature. The challenge was getting the guide to haul me back in the raft! It was kind of neat to be in this silted water that we have seen in most of our travels this summer!

    All things must come to an end and so did our raft adventure, maybe we had 45 minutes (plus) actually on the water and the rest of the time was getting wet suits on and off. Hmmmmh, off? A wetsuit, in a school bus, with all genders and ages present?? And put my clothes back on. Fortunately I was at the back so at least I didn't have numerous fellow raftees walking by in a state of undress! This other mom and I were both laughing pretty hard over the awkwardness of the experience. Especially as most Europeans (again most are twenty somethings) look as this situation differently! Tom has now declared his interest in more rafting adventures! The trip was great, no rain and no wildlife, but a lot of laughter and cold, cold water!

    Back to the RV, into town for a few groceries and back out to the campground for a quiet evening...oh. but wait the day is not done. Elk! Elk began trickling into the park. First it was a couple of doe, and then a big ole bull elk, and then the whole rest of a small herd showed up in section "W" of the campground. They were everywhere as they grazed right through the sites to the river, and then back thru the sites again. And then just when all the cameras were gone and the dogs had stopped barking, they would be back! I took picture after picture, first with the big camera, then with my cell phone, then we would try to eat dinner and they would come back! I only saw the one bull, but Steve saw another younger, smaller bull, but all size of does with young ones, no babies, but young. And noisy! Honestly as I finally went to bed, I looked out my bedroom window and they were back again! Just that very day I had told our rafting guide that I had not seen one elk, he was shocked. As the end of day we have seen , what maybe two dozen? Hard to tell, except for size, they all looked the same! It was ironic, because the campground name, Wapiti, means "elk".

    Even with all the elk noise and confusion, we fell peacefully asleep, shoot, we had a bull elk guarding camp!
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    Caroline Hansen

    So fun, good job rafting! Jasper is so awesome!


    Those antlers are massive! How would you like carrying those on your head all day every day? Lollie!


    Tom, you look like a pro! Lollie

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