Stealth Camp (Rampart Creek Campground)[MAP]

Icefields Parkway, Banff-Jasper National Park (Day 138)

Icefields Parkway, Banff-Jasper National Park (Day 138)

I had my alarm set for 6am but it was still bloody cold and bloody dark. I reluctantly crawled out of bed at 7:30.

I took the riding slow and ate lots, even started getting my camera out again. It was a gradual 1000 metre climb and 100 kilometres to the first summit at the Icefields Centre. My chain grabs and jams whenever I try to change to the granny gears. It’s because I’ve got the new chain on an old, worn-down set of cogs. So I struggled up-hill in middle gear. I rang a bike shop in Banff who suggested I try a bike shop in Lake Louise.

Hopefully they will have some front chain rings so that I can stay on Highway 93 and go south as quickly as possible.

At the Icefields Centre I stocked up on a lot of water and some over-priced Snickers bars. When I was about to get back on my bike, a teenager approached me and was in total awe at the idea of me riding up to the summit, “Much respect to you man!” I then rolled downhill for about 40 kilometres and found one of the closed campgrounds that the ranger had mentioned yesterday. I made use of the dining building and set up my sleeping bag on top of one of the wooden tables.

Between Jasper and Banff, Icefields Parkway (Day 138)

Between Jasper and Banff, Icefields Parkway (Day 138)


Banff (Tunnel Mountain Campground)[MAP]

Jasper National Park, Icefields Parkway (Day 139)

Jasper National Park, Icefields Parkway (Day 139)

The second summit today was a lot easier. I got into Lake Louise at 3pm and found the bike/ski shop that I’d been referred to. The bike mechanic, apparently one of the finest in Canada, had gone on holidays four days ago. So they’d closed down the bike part of the shop and were now only selling skiing and snowboarding gear. Looks like I’ll have to head over to Banff. I had a closer look at the free map of Alberta I’d picked up and realised it was probably a good thing. If I’d taken Highway 93 all the way south I would have just skirted along the edge of Glacier National Park and totally missed the chance of passing through it.

I pedalled as fast as I could to Banff thinking that bike shops would be closed by 5pm on a Saturday. As soon as I got to town, I rang a bike shop for directions and found out they were open till 9pm. Unfortunately they didn’t have any front chain rings for my bike but gave me the names of some good shops in Calgary. Shite.

Banff is full of Aussies, must be all ski bums I reckon. I camped at the local park and was surprised to find, even though it’d drop to -2 degrees Celsius overnight, that there were many happy campers out there in force.

Thanking Stef for getting me this far, Icefields Parkway, Banff-Jasper National Park (Day 139)

Thanking Stef for getting me this far, Icefields Parkway, Banff-Jasper National Park (Day 139)

Jasper National Park, Icefields Parkway (Day 139)

Jasper National Park, Icefields Parkway (Day 139)


Calgary (YHA Hostel)[MAP]

Last night as I was leaving the bike shop in Banff, the manager patted me on the back and laughingly said that at least I’d have a nice tailwind all the way to Calgary. Shit. Headwinds all day. It was horrible. Riding into an unforgiving headwind for an entire day was depressing. Just before I got to Canmore I got a flat tire from a small staple. After Canmore I got another flat, or maybe it was just a slow leak from my poorly-repaired first flat. I used the opportunity to change my rear tyre with the spare one that I’ve been carrying ever since Whitehorse.

I put in a new tube but just as I got to 75psi the thing popped near the valve. What a bang. I had a ringing in my ear for an hour after.

Not only constant headwinds but constant traffic as well. Just the continual noise of cars and trucks rushing past left me dreading the thought of entering another city. It took me over an hour to find a hostel downtown, the street numbering in Calgary is ridiculous, or I’m just very dumb.

Had a crap sleep last night. A stuffy and warm hostel room full of snorers. Worked out there’s only about another 1500-1800 miles until I get to Mexico. I’d better get my Spanish language tapes out again.

Found a bike shop with a mechanic that looked remarkably like Garth from Wayne’s World.

However he enthusiastically and competently gave me my granny gears back with the only set of front chain rings that he had left in stock.

Dinner was a six-egg omelette with tomatoes, potato and three sausages on the side. Washed down with dessert; a full block of Cadbury’s chocolate and a tub of yoghurt.


Fort MacLeod (River’s Edge RV Park)[MAP]

Rode South out of Calgary into boring flat fields with strong side winds. A shitty boring, windy day.

PreviousJasper National Park (Whistler Campground) NextSt Mary (Red Eagle RV Park)

No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email is never shared.Required fields are marked *