Canada, British Columbia and Yukon

September 6 – 21, 2015.

Vancouver Island

On September 6, 2015, we took the ferry from Port Angeles, WA to Victoria, BC and did our first border crossing with the XPCamper. As expected we did not encounter any problems. It felt good to be back on Canadian soil even though BC is quite different from Eastern Canada.

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The ferry arrives in the center of Victoria and it was a nice sunny day so we parked and walked.

Victoria is the Capital of British Columbia and is one of the oldest cities in the Pacific Northwest. 1843 first British settlement.

Victoria is the Capital of British Columbia and is one of the oldest cities in the Pacific Northwest. The first British settlement was in 1843.

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Old World Charm of the historic Fairmont Empress Hotel. We did not indulge in the High Tea tradition but we sure enjoyed a couple Martinis on the Terrace!

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Downtown is vibrent with people and activities.

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We spent some time at the annual Vancouver Island Blues Bash listening to some pretty cool music. Bill Johnson & Gerry Barnum local blues veterans played original soulful roots and blues.

From Victoria, we decided to head to the western coast of Vancouver Island and we spent the night by the ocean in Jordan River.

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Western Vancouver Island, Jordan River.

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Western Vancouver Island, Jordan River Regional Park Campground. $15 a night.

Beautiful West Coast Sunset

Beautiful West Coast Sunset.

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Joe’s new friend Bart (who is also Santa Claus at the mall for four weeks a year) took us for a walk to look at an abandoned mill that is now a canvas for graffiti artists who also come to surf in the area.

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The iconic VW Bus is a classic on Vancouver Island. Love the color combo!

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A room with a view! We stopped for lunch on a spectacular beach in Port Renfrew.

After a few days touring around Vancouver Island we made it to Nanaimo to catch the ferry to Vancouver (Horseshoe-Bay). We wanted to go to Tofino but it was raining and it turned out to be a longer drive than we thought.

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You can’t go to Nanaimo and not eat a Nanaimo Bar. Yummy!

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A picture of a picture. Leaving Vancouver Island for Vancouver main land.

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Some relaxation on the ferry. There was no more vehicle space but plenty of passenger space. Not to many people seem to take the ferry on foot, at least on Sundays.

Vancouver, BC

City of Vancouver from Cypress Provincial Park

Cypress Provincial Park where we spent the night coming out of the ferry. You can see the city of Vancouver when the fog goes away.

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Canada Place a landmark in Downtown Vancouver.

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We had a great lunch at The Flying Pig in Gastown, the city’s oldest neighborhood and now considered the “hip” area of Vancouver. We cook all our meals in the camper but once in a while we like to splurge a little.

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Water Street in Gastown.

From Vancouver we headed north on the scenic Sea to Sky Highway (99).

Driving on the scenic Sea to Sky Highway (99).

Driving on the scenic Sea to Sky Highway (99).

Whistler, BC

Our first stop was the Whistler RV Park a few miles South of Whistler Village. It was a bit pricey for our budget since we usually favor free camping or Provincial/State/National Parks because we don’t need any hookups and prefer their privacy and rustic surroundings. The Whistler RV Park offered a lot of services (Wi-Fi, hot showers, shuttle, organic coffee shop …) and had magnificent mountain views.

Whistler RV Park a few miles South of Whistler Village is great and has amazing views. A bit pricey for us, but worth it for all the services they offer. We normally favor free camping or Provincial/ State/National Parks much cheeper since we don’t need any hookups.

Whistler RV Park.

We took the Peak 2 Peak (Whistler to Blackcomb) Gondola tour from Whistler Village and spent the day on the mountain top. We walked around, had lunch, admired the views and first thing we knew it was time to come back down. The sun was shinning and the surroundings were just magical. We really enjoyed our day at Whistler but were ready to continue on.

After the first Gondola

After the first Gondola

The second Gondola that goes from Whistler to Blackcomb

The second Gondola that goes from Whistler to Backcomb.

Panoramic view from the top.

Panoramic view from the top.

Inukshuks are everywhere in BC.

Inukshuks are everywhere in BC.

Whistler Village. Hotels, shops, bars and restaurants.

Whistler Village. Hotels, shops, bars and restaurants.

British Columbia’s roads are in excellent conditions and their Provincial Parks offer great campgrounds where you can stay for $15 a night and also their Recreation Areas where you can camp for free and get a nice leveled space, a picnic table, fire pit and pit toilet. You can find those all along the highways in gorgeous settings making travelling easy and enjoyable. We  BC.

Free camping on Roger Creek BC Recreational Area on Highway 99.

Free camping on Roger Creek BC Recreational Area on Highway 99.

Kitimat, BC

My nice Sandra lives in Kitimat in Northern BC close to Prince Rupert; when we decided to go to Alaska I knew  we had to make a detour to Kitimat. It turned out to be one of the highlights of our Northern trip, for two reasons:

  1. Seeing my niece was surely nice since I had not seen her in a few years and she announced that her and her boyfriend Tim were expecting a baby. WOW!
  2. Salmon Fishing was one of our bucket list items. We had the best two days of fishing Coho Salmon on the Kitimat River with Sandra and Tim, who turned out to be a real expert.  He had all the gear for us and he patiently gave us all the pointers we needed to make this a memorable time.

The company, the weather, the beauty of the surroundings, the nature and catching our limit made this experience one we will never forget. Thank you Sandra and Tim!

Joe had noticed an oil leak in the rear differential casing, so with the help of Tim we found a good mechanic that fixed the problem and he also noticed that we had a dimple in our drivers side Hellwig Air Bag, which we ended up getting fixed in Anchorage, AK after it bursted. I guess it’s all part of life on the road. “You’ve got to take the good with the bad…”

Tim caught the first Coho of the day. Diesel the Great Dane loves fishing as well.

Tim caught the first Coho of the day. Diesel the Great Dane loves fishing as well.

Now this is one happy guy!

That is one happy guy!

Diesel the Great Dane and Apollo the Pitbull puppy where exhausted after a day on the river.

Diesel the Great Dane and Apollo the Pitbull puppy where exhausted after a day on the river.

The next day we did a “drift” in a row boat down the Kitimat River.

The next day we did a “drift” in a row boat down the Kitimat River.

Somebody had to do all the work!

Somebody had to do all the work!

So nice to be spending quality time with my beautiful niece Sandra.

So nice to be spending quality time with my beautiful niece Sandra.

A little nap after lunch.

A little nap after lunch.

Another great catch!

Another great catch!

To bad we have such a small freezer, we were able to fit only 4 filets. We will try to keep them until we get to Central or South America!

To bad we have such a small freezer, we were able to fit only 4 filets. We will try to keep them until we get to Central or South America!

The nature surrounding us was just incredible.

The nature surrounding us was just incredible. Kitimat River BC.

From Kitimat we headed north on Stewart-Cassiar Highway (37) all the way to the Alaska Highway (1) in Yukon. The weather was not the best, partly cloudy with a bit of sun here and there. But still a lot of beautiful nature to look at.

Somewhere on Highway 37.

Somewhere along Highway 37.

Yukon

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So exited! We made it to YUKON!

Whitehorse, Yukon

Whitehorse is the capital of Yukon and has a population of about 30 000.

Whitehorse is the capital of Yukon and has a population of about 30 000.

A totem sits on the plaza in the historical

Whitehorse has a nice waterfront promenade.

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Whitehorse, as reported by the Guinness World Records, is the city with the least air pollution in the world.

First home of the MacBride Museum in Whitehorse

First home of the MacBride Museum in Whitehorse

Alaska Highway, Yukon

I had no idea, Yukon was so beautiful!

I had no idea, Yukon was so beautiful!

A family of Trumpeter Swans getting ready to head South for the winter.

A family of Trumpeter Swans getting ready to head South for the winter.

A Bald Eagle somewhere in Yukon on the Alaska Highway.

A Bald Eagle somewhere in Yukon on the Alaska Highway.

Kluane Lake, WOW!

Kluane Lake, WOW!

Free camping on Kluane Lake. It doesn’t get any better!

Free camping on Kluane Lake. It doesn’t get any better!

Canyon Creek Bridge built in 1904 during the Gold Rush.

Canyon Creek Bridge built in 1904 during the Gold Rush.

Next stop ALASKA … stay tuned!

2 thoughts on “Canada, British Columbia and Yukon

  1. What a journey! So great to see your photos from my two hometowns (Victoria and Vancouver). Hope Alaska is treating you well and the bears aren’t eating all your salmon!

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