Monday, 31 August 2015

Up Through the Rockies

When PChad & I lived in Alberta, we often drove the Crowsnest Pass to get to my parents, or go on holidays in the States.  We decided to take the Kootenay Highway up into the Rockies this time since we had only done that once before.

We saw the giant truck in Sparwood
(as we drove by!  No time to stop!)

 PChad & I had stopped at Fort Steele the one other time we had taken this road, & it was fun, but the weather Friday did not make for a great day to do the fort.  We stopped for fuel & snapped this crazy photo & called it good!

We decided it was perfect weather to swim at Fairmont hot springs!  All throughout Yellowstone, the kids kept asking to feel the water in the hot springs, & imagining how warm the water would be, & how fun it would be to swim in it, so we took them to a hot springs you are allowed to swim in, on a cool day.

 The kids had a great time, & I thoroughly enjoyed the warm water!

Friday, 28 August 2015


Southern Alberta is a place where dinosaur fossils have been found, & as we were driving to PChad's parents' house, we passed a few signs for the Devil's Coulee Dinosaur museum.  The kids thought that sounded exciting, so we went one morning to check it out.

There's a museum as well as a site where they found several fossils that you can go & look, but you are not allowed to take anything home with you.  It was a hot smokey day, but that didn't stop us from finding a few treasures.

 At the top of the picture is a fossilized dinosaur bone, & the black bit is part of a dinosaur egg shell.  We also found fossilized turtle shells, teeth, & Chancery kept finding fossilized poop!

 Here's large piece of fossilized dinosaur bone we found!

 It was cool to see on the different levels of ground, they different types of fossils.

Strange to think there were turtles, crocodiles & dinosaurs out here on the prairie!

Monday, 24 August 2015

The Ranch

Sunday after church we headed to my cousins' ranch.  I always loved coming here during the summers as a kid.  There were so many fun things to do, & it's probably what lead me to look for a farmer to marry (not that he ended up being one in the end, but that's another story)!

My cousin has enough quads for us all, so we went for a ride up to what we call "The Bench".  It's a flat piece of land where my Grandma grew up, & the house is still there.

Chancery was very excited for her first quad ride!

And I was also excited, they are so fun to drive, & it was time to share that with the kids!

My parents took the Razr instead, & were thankful for the windshield which deflected a lot of the dust.

Up on the Bench we discussed the crops, & the old license plates used to patch the grain bins while the kids explored...

They climbed up in the old wooden grain bin

And we found the old International truck!

This is the old house where my great Grandfather & my Grandmother lived.  We even got to go inside & kill some mice we found (which the kids found super exciting!)

 Then Justin let the kids try out the combines

 And while PChad & Justin talked about the mechanics of it all, the kids played with the grasshoppers

It was a really fun ride, even if we did get a bit dusty!

Sunday, 23 August 2015

The Deal at Yellowstone

The kids really wanted to eat breakfast at the campground on the second morning, but since it was so cold, we had to do something to keep warm.  I came up with a deal...  We went out to dinner, & I told them if they behaved well, we'd go look at some shops afterward & see if we could find some sweatshirts for a good price.

 They kissed a fish for good luck, & we were off to shop!

I told the kids they had to find a nice sweatshirt, which fit them well, for under $20.  They had a great time looking in the giant outlet store we found & both ended up finding good deals.  Then it was my turn, since I had to stay warm too!

After breakfast at the campground in our new sweatshirts, we were off for more hiking & hot springs!

We took a little hike through the woods & found a nice waterfall

 Then we wandered around the Artist paint pots, but we kept losing Chancery!

This wolf kept following us around, & we were not sure if we should be worried, but it seemed friendly.

Chad & Asher, watch out for the wolf!

 Asher wanted to stay by this geyser until it erupted, but it looked like it might take awhile, so we convinced him to move on.

I guess Asher had nothing to worry about, the wolf ended up to be quite tame!

The kids & I are quite pleased with our new sweatshirts, we even did the unthinkable & wore our new Yellowstone sweaters to Yellowstone!  But it was cold, so we decided it would be ok.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Yellowstone has Mud & Geysers!

We started our day with a hearty breakfast to ward off the cold.  We had stayed in the KOA at West Yellowstone in a cabin, which was really nice becuase it had space heaters!  The KOA had a outdoor breakfast we could have gone to, but it was only 7°C, so we opted to go to a restaurant instead.  

 Unfortunately, the coffee was pretty bad, but the pancakes were yummy!

 And I carried on the tradition from my childhood of getting a cinnamon bun!

After breakfast, we were off to Yellowstone for more adventures!
 We saw boiling mud called 'paint pots', & learned that the minerals in the mud kill the plants which grow around them, but in the winter the bison hang around in the warm mud & provide enough fertilizer for a few hardy plants to grow.

The kids were quite impressed by all the boardwalks which crossed the fragile terrain, but wanted to know what kept the boardwalks from falling through the thin ground into the water below.

 Seeing all the different colours that the minerals turned the water & ground was really neat.  It's crazy how many different geological wonders are here in Yellowstone!

 Then we waited for about an hour for Old Faithful to blow!

Just after Old Faithful, a ranger announced that the Beehive was going to erupt within the next 15 minutes, so we took the short walk to see it too since it is a bigger geyser than Old Faithful.

We didn't think we'd have enough time to go across to the backside, so we stayed across the river from it, but when we saw how the wind was blowing the water, we were glad we stayed where we were!  The people on the other side were not expecting to get so wet!

Friday, 21 August 2015

Animals at Yellowstone

On our way to Yellowstone we stopped for lunch at a park.  The park was not one of the newest parks we have seen.  It had a wooden Big Toy & Merry-Go-Round.

  I don't think my kids have ever been on a merry-go-round before, but they knew what to do!

After playing for awhile, it was off to Yellowstone!

We saw lots of Bison which were really near to the road.  Digby was quite excited by all the wildlife we saw too!

Chancery found a very cute little chipmunk, but it was squished by the road, so she was sad about that.

And we saw a heard of elk in the town of Mammoth when we were having lunch on our way out of the park.
We were not allowed to go too close since they had young elk to protect, but they didn't seem too bothered by the people.

Below is a video of Digby when we saw the first bison in the park!

We enjoyed seeing all the animals, but were a little disappointed we didn't see any moose, bears, or mountain sheep, though we did see a dead bear along the side of the road just North of Helena, Montana!