Thursday, August 14, 2008
I am here.
The ride into Banff from Marble Canyon campground was one of the easiest of the trip, or perhaps I am finally used to riding with a 50 pound load? The day started with an easy ~600 foot climb up Vermillion Pass (crossing the continental divide), then a sweet descent. I saw two flocks of mountain goats near the bottom of the descent. They were clambering around on a rocky slope which overlooked a river. Then it was easy pedaling to the junction with highway 1A.
After a stop at Castle Mountain to refuel (chocolate! PB&J!), and at Johnson Canyon to hike out to the lower falls and back, I sped onto Banff, making good time on the gentle grades despite the heat. HW 1A is a pretty road and has relatively light traffic (and no big trucks). I passed yet another black bear eating berries and then a pair of bighorn sheep! I made it to Banff pretty early in the day and trudged up the hill to Tunnel Mountain campground, passing some hoodoos on the way up. About 45 miles for the day.
I set up camp, showered and chatted with other cycle tourists in the campground, then Sue and Bill called and I went down to Banff to meet them for dinner in town. Our last meal together as I am flying out tomorrow.