Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Home Again

July 22 - 24, 2012
Lacey, Washington

Just a short note, not too much going on except washing clothes and shopping for our next outing in just a few days.  We will be home until Friday and then we will go to Pacific, WA, and stay at the Navy FamCamp.  Just like last year, both of my sisters will join us there and we will eat crab, BBQ oysters and shrimp, walk on the beach, eat more and  walk on the beach, probably drink a little wine, I hope two 5 liter boxes will be enough.

Today July 24 is my birthday, at 4:04 pm I will be officially 65 years young, which of course means that I am now covered by medicare and my S/S check will be reduced by $99.00 to pay for the part B.  I have already had one problem:  I had a lab test on May 25 and LabCorp sent me a bill, stating that my military insurance did not pay because I was on Medicare.  What does that mean???  Well starting July 1 is when I started Medicare so there should have been no problem.  I called my insurance, USFHP,  and they assured me that it would be taken care of.

Back to my birthday, Joe is taking me out to dinner to my favorite place, Anthony's Homeport in Olympia.

Safe travels to all and thanks for stopping by.

Joe and Nancy

Monday, July 23, 2012

Run, the buffalo are coming!

Part 3 of 3

July 5 - 20, 2012
Great Canadian Barn Dance RV Park
Hill Spring, Alberta

Yep we're still here in Alberta.  There are so many things to see in this area.  On our way to the Musical Ride we toured the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, just 20 min north west of Ft. Macleod.  This is a World Heritage Site.   http://www.history.alberta.ca/headsmashedin/default.aspx  Before the Plains People had horses they organized complex communal buffalo hunts.  It was quite an undertaking as it might take months to complete the set up of the hunt and then the winds had to be just perfect so the buffalo couldn't smell the people.  Everything was done on foot even having a runner in front of the buffalo stampede leading them down the narrow "road" to the cliff, then at the last minute the runner turned to get away from the buffalo.  The end result was the buffalo kept running and went over the cliff.  Check out the excellent web site to learn more.  This was very fascinating I wish we could have stayed longer.  If you go plan on a minimum of three hours.

Going over the edge

Above the cliff

 Looking up the cliff

 Later in the evening we had a superb dinner at the "Barn" of Alberta Beef that had been cooking all day, and it was so tender all you needed was a fork.  After dinner The Kunkels gave us an extraordinary two and a half hour show.  Wow, they cook, serve, clean up, sing, tell stories, and who knows what else, they are always busy.  I'm sure that they will sleep in after all of us leave.

This really is a barn, constructed in 1910 with a dance floor upstairs so there are many support beams which makes it challenging to take pictures.

Trevor on the right and his father Lloyd


 Trevor's 14 year old son, a very accomplished musician 

Trevor's wife, Cindy

Left to right, Uncle Ed, Trevor's 22 year old son and Lloyd (Trevor's father)

The end to a perfect day

Safe Travels, thanks for stopping by

Joe and Nancy

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Musical Ride

July 15 - 20, 2012
Part 2 of 3
Great Canadian Barn Dance
Hill Spring, Alberta

What a fun rally he are having.  Cardston is another little town about 30 miles away and home to the famous Remington Carriage Museum.  The museum houses the largest collection of horse drawn vehicles in North America, with over 250 carriages, buggies, wagons and sleigh.  The museum also has a working stable and a restoration shop.  Don Remington began collecting carriages in 1954 when he restored a cutter to bring Santa Claus into town for the Christmas celebration.  This is another must see museum, the tour guides are excellent and have a wealth of information on where a particular carriage came from or how it was designed for the owner.

The print is sort of small but I think you can read this plaque. 

These next two pictures show the before and after of this buggy

At one time you could order this buggy from Sears and it would be delivered just like this.  
All you had to do is put the top on and add a horse. 
 All for a wopping $29.85.

O' sure you can guess what this is, Pretty fancy eh!

Even the horse was dressed for the occasion 

This carriage was like a taxi, the driver sat outside on the rear and controlled the door which was in the front.  The passengers had to push their money up through a little slot in the roof, no money, no door would open.

notice the large opening for King George IV to enter and exit the buggy

These are not used, just displayed 

The shop.  The have orders for repair or reconstruction stretched out for 20 months. 
 Five people work here full time 

Fort Macleod is another small town close by about 40 miles away, named for Colonel Macleod Boulevard.  Fort Macleod was the headquarter of the Northwest Mounted Police in Western Canada, established in 1874 on an island two miles downriver from the present townsite.

Fort Macleod is most famous for the North West Musical Police Musical Ride.  The first NWMP riding demonstrations took place here in 1876.  Today this tradition continues with the Fort's Musical Ride.  This is quite a treat.  One of our friends was on the official Musical Ride for a two year stent.  He said the Musical Ride, which is demonstrated by young folks mostly in college is very authentic, including the music.  It was a site to see.
We were allowed in the barn watching them getting ready

Each horse has this stenciled maple leaf on both sides of rump

Then come into the parade grounds in the old fort for inspection

This boy was selected out of the crowd
 and given a crash course on how to inspect the horses and the riders. 
 He took his time and gave a thorough inspection of each horse and rider, front and back.

The Charge

The blue field is flax, almost in full bloom

This brownish field is rye, I think

Just a nice looking farm operation (and there were many)

We had a great day, next post will be part 3

Safe travels to all, thanks for stopping by

Joe and Nancy

Bears, bears and more bears

I have been without internet service while in Canada
so trying to catch up now.
July 15 - 20, 2012
Great Canadian Barn Dance
Hill Spring, Alberta
Part 1 of 3

Traveling from Bellvue, Alberta to the Great Canadian Barn Dance RV Park near Hillspring, Alberta were magnificant fields of canolola in full bloom.  What a site to see especially when next to other fields of grain that were still green.

As mentioned before, we are on our way to the Region 10 Airstream Rally which encompasses members from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.  It's always nice to visit with our friends and meet new ones.  Region 10 also includes Alaska, The Yukon and Northwest Territories.  This is an enormous region.

Finally arriving at the Great Canadian Barn Dance RV Park

I have heard of the Barn Dance place for several years now from friends in BC about what a great place this is.  The Kunkel Family has owned and operated the RV Park, barn dances and musical shows for over 25 years and they know how to have fun.  The Kunkel Family is so very talented, when they are not singing and struming they might be in the kitchen washing dishes or serving dinner, busing the tables or in the office running the business.  I can't say enough about these wonderfully talented folks, they really give you a warm welcome with true western hospitality.

We had all shapes and sizes of Airtreams,
 little ity-bity ones and big long ones.


 Our trailer is a 28'

Oops! how on earth do you get a campfire ring caught between the tires.  
More importantly is how do you get out.

It didn't take long for the engineers to show up each one with a different plan on how to get the fire ring out

There is a small lake, bed and breakfast, cabins and many rv spaces.  Our first night here we had a picnic dinner of hamburgers, potato salad, coleslaw and all the fixins', After dinner we had a regular jam session, with several members of our group and members of the Kunkel Family.

Else and Bob from our Washington Airstream group
 and in the red shirt is the very talented  Trever Kunkel

Stu from the BC group along with Trever

Waterton National Park is just around the corner, on our visit there we drove up Red Rock Canyon.  So very beautiful as you can see in the pictures and a big plus was all the bear activity we saw along the way.  Waterton National Park is on the Canadian side o fGlacier National Park in the U.S.

Red Rock Canyon,
 I guess I'm not very good taking pictures with red rocks in it because these look sorted washed out

We also drove to Pincher Creek, about 30 miles away to see the Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village, an outdoor heritage facility, has a magnificient display of the old days that are now long gone.  It's a good thing citizen and/or government groups preserve these heritage sites.  English born John George "Kootenai" was a character who's name came to the Waterton Lakes area in 1865 after crossing the South Kootenay Pass.  He fell in love with this area and its breathtaking vistas and vowed to return,  In 1877 he settled in this area, trading with the First Nations people and hunting.  Later he was integral in the preservation of Waterton Lakes National Park.  Kootenai Brown was appointed the first Forest Warden in Waterton.

Waterton Lake looking south 

Our friend Ron playing with the telegraph 

Kitchen in boarding house

The doctor's office

This is a community park and I took this picture of this lady; see what looks like a string under her and along side her right leg?  Well this is not a string........it is tubing and she is on oxygen!  What an inspiration to all of us.  I'm sure this is not easy for her but here she is pulling weeds.  Three cheers for her!

No chemicals here, just lots of volunteers to work in their beautiful gardens.

One last bear picture, he just would not turn around, so how appropriate for
The End

Safe travels to all, thanks for stopping by

Joe and Nancy