On Monday we came back from our amazing Rockies trip. Once again, it became one of my highlights of my stay. Thanks to everyone who joined on our Rockies trip, Westtrek, our great busdriver Darren and our amazing tour guide Janel.
Friday was finally the time to go to the Rockies and I was so excited that I barely slept the day beforehand. I could see that more people lacked some sleep, as a lot of people were getting coffees in Tim Hortons or tried to catch some sleep in the bus. The drive to Valemount was pretty long, so luckily we had enough stops along the way. Our first stop was at Hope, where everybody had time to get a coffee, breakfast and explore the town. We went to see the river and made a few pictures of it. After that we continued our journey to Kamloops, where we could get lunch in the mall. When all our stomachs were filled, we started driving to Spahat Falls. This is a cute little waterfall near Clearwater. As it was so small, you could take pictures with it with the water coming from your nose or mouth. Then we continued our journey to Valemount. On the way to Valemount, we were a bit unlucky, as there was a forest fire. The police blocked the road and we weren’t able to get to our hotel. According to the news, it would take about 2 hours for the road to open again, so we went back to Blue River to wait for new updates. After an hour we heard that the road would not open till the morning, so Janel tried to arrange an hotel in Kamloops. We tried to make the best out of the situation, so some of our group even started dancing on the music. When Janel could not arrange a hotel in Kamloops, he called the police for us. Apparently the road was open again, so the decision was made to get back to the hotel again. We were really happy that we still could get to the hotel, because if we would have gone back to Kamloops, we would have needed to wake up 3 hours earlier. This made the bus drive even longer, but not less fun. During our long bus drive we played games with the whole bus. One of the games was called “Speeddating”. Basically, one side was just switching seats and you had a short time to get to know them. It was really nice to get to know people besides our INTERNeX gang. We also played another game during our long bus ride. While playing the game, Janel would mention a certain item. This item had to be brought to the back of the bus and then back to Janel. The row that managed to do it first won. Besides that we also sang a lot together and turned the bus a bit in a party bus. When we finally got to the hotel, we still went to the Cowboy ranch where we ate dinner, did line dancing and tried to catch a bull with a lasso.
On Saturday our adventure in the Rockies really started. We drove a short way to Mt. Robson where we had breakfast. Then we drove further to Jasper. On the way to Jasper something special happened, we drove into another time zone. The clock had to be forwarded 1 hour. This was sometimes confusing, because one of my phones didn’t change automatically while the other one did. In Jasper we could get lunch for at the Columbia icefields, as it can be really expensive there. I chose to do the Snocoach on this day, which was one of the optional activities. During the Snocoach we drove in a big tank up to the glacier. It was really nice to see all the snow in Canada again, because in a way I missed it a bit. Here we could try out the fresh water from the glacier. Besides that we also made a few great pictures in front of the mountain. After the Snocoach we drove up to Peyto lake, which was the first really blue lake that we saw on our journey. I was amazed by the amazing blue water and made some great pictures in front of the lake. Then it was time for the second lake of our big trip: Bow Lake. At Bow Lake we could do the Polar Wolf Swim. Basically, we ran with the whole group into the water, because that seemed easier. However, in my opinion the water did not get warmer while I was swimming in it, so I got out of it really soon. We all quickly changed back into our normal clothes and drove to our second hotel. We did not stay really long at that hotel, as we had to get dinner and then had to meet at the pub for pre-drinks. The drinks in the pub were really cheap, so a great place for pre-drinks for our big party in Banff. After getting some drinks we went to the club to dance the night away.
The next day a lot of people were still recovering from the day before. We already had to leave really early in order to see all the lakes that day. Our first stop was at Lake Minnewanka where we had breakfast again. After I finished my food, I decided to explore the lake for a bit and make pictures together with Lea. On the way back to the bus we also saw big horn sheep walking away and luckily I got the chance to make a picture of them as well. Then we drove further to one of the more famous lakes of the Rockies, Lake Louise. We first did a hike to a hidden spot. From this hidden spot, you could make a beautiful picture of the lake without all the tourists on it. After I got pictures from the lake, I decided to go back to the lake and enjoy the view from the bottom. However, I could not spend a lot of time there, as I already did a long hike before that. After time at the lake itself, we could either choose to go to Lake Louise village or do the Lake Louise gondola. I decided to do the Lake Louise gondola, which meant that I could also enjoy the all you can eat buffet beforehand. The food was really good and after I ate I was ready to go up to the top of the gondola. Franz, Alex and I took the open gondola, as we wanted to make sure that we could make nice pictures if we would spot a bear on the way to the top. Unfortunately we didn’t see any bears. Once on the top, we did a hike which took us to a really nice viewing point. From there you could see the mountains on the back and the clouds also added something mystical. As I was a bit late, I had to sing a song in front of the bus. I decided to sing “Het is een nacht”, which is a famous Dutch song. It was fun to see Danielle and Bart singing along, which made it less awkward for me. After enjoying the amazing view at the top of the gondola, it was finally time to go to the best lake in the Rockies, which I think is Moraine Lake. Moraine Lake is the most blue lake in the Rockies and great for pictures. We hiked a short time to get a better view of the lake and made a picture there. I was so amazed by the blue color of the lake. I also tried to make one on the rocks, which was really scary for me. After Moraine Lake we continued our way to another amazing lake, namely Emerald Lake. A lot of people decided to do canoeing. I went together with Lea and Merle. We all got a paddle and I think we were doing a pretty good job with directing the boat. On the lake we were enjoying the views of the mountains and the beautiful lake. After that we drove up to the Mountain View Cabins. There were only a few cabins, which basically meant that we were the only one at the cabins. We had a great BBQ and then I explored the area a bit. After that I played a game with Dawid, Marko, Mandy, Tess and Nathalie. I ended that night early, while others decided to party.
After getting breakfast we already had to drive back to Vancouver. It was a long way back to Vancouver, so we played some games again, watched a movie and also had a few great stops. We had one stop at Kelowna to get lunch. We got pizza and ate this next to the lake. We also had one more stop next to a beautiful mountain. On our way we got a bit unlucky again, as there was an accident on the highway near Chilliwack. At the end of our trip it was an emotional goodbye, as Danielle, Tess and Merle are almost leaving.
I hope you had a great time in the Rockies, because I certainly did! See you soon at PuB NiGHT!
INTERNeX International Exchange
Suite 2077, 2079 – 88 West Pender Street
Vancouver, Canada -V6B 6N9-