Under cloudy skies we headed east out of Jasper on Rt. 16, the Yellowhead Highway. We also left Jasper National Park and started traveling on regular highways with businesses and different signage along the way. Before long we came to a sign that said “Scenic Route to Alaska” and that made us realize that this adventure is really happening. We followed the sign onto Route 40 and instead of traveling in the Rockies, we were in the Eastern foothills of the Rockies. The area is beautiful in a different way, the scenery consisting of rolling hills instead of towering snow-covered peaks. There were signs of logging and mining along the way but still plenty of forest for the wildlife. We were able to spot deer but we’re still on the lookout for moose, caribou and wolves.
We stopped in Grande Cache for the night and enjoyed the Visitor’s Center. They had a great outdoor exhibit which explained what a grande cache is – a storage cabin on stilts to keep furs and trapping supplies dry and away from wildlife. They also gave us lots of reading material when we told them we were on our way to Alaska.
As our journey continued the next day, we had lots of sunshine, stops for construction, and fox, elk, bear and badger sightings. Grande Prairie was our next stop for shopping at Costco and Walmart and then the final push of the day to Dawson Creek. We crossed back into British Columbia just before Dawson Creek and returned to Pacific Daylight Time after being on Mountain Daylight Time for the past 11 days! The long daylight hours take some getting used to but we’re managing.