Mile 0

We've actually gone 2350 miles in 5 days and made it to the start (mile 0) of the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek, BC. Days 2-5 were ALL 12.5-13 hr days, but that is going to change today. We are way further than we thought we'd be so we are slowing it down. The kids have done GREAT and neither Eric nor I have had many meltdowns, but we were sooo tired when we pulled in at 10pm last night. Yesterday we traveled 514 miles in about 13 hours. Lots of hills so many times we were going 25-35 MPH. We thought we would have hit mountains by now, but it's continued to be hilly.

We stayed up pretty late last night. We're in another time zone now so it's actually 2 hours behind IL. Whatever time we actually arrived and went to sleep...I still only got about 6.5 hrs. But like the night before they were solid. I think I could have slept longer but Eric was awake...and when you are in such close quarters little sounds and movements wake you. We are trying to stay as quiet as possible so the kids keep sleeping. They too were up too late.

We left Carstairs, AB and traveled north towards Edmonton. When we stopped at a rest area about an hour or so later, there was a little restaurant. Eric saw the Poutine sign and HAD to get some. He and the kids devoured it while I talked to a couple from IL. They were parked near us at the campground in Carstairs but we never crossed paths there. The kids got a little chance to run around too.
We went around Edmonton via a SW bypass. We stopped in Spruce Grove at a Rotary park (lots of Rotary and Lions parks up here), made lunch, ran into Walmart, and got some cash at a bank. We don't want to pay 3% fees on credit card purchases so we are just using cash in Canada. I did get an ATM fee with the first withdrawl at a C-store, but there were NO fees at TD Canada Trust yesterday.We stopped into the visitors center (also LOTS of those up here) and she told us the distances to Grande Prairie and Dawson Creek. It was around 2, so we knew that our original goal of Fox Creek would be lazy...so we set our sites on Grande Prairie. We did stop for some frozen treats around 5pm as we needed a little break and we didn't want the kids napping any longer. We also knew it would be 6:30 before we got to Grande Prairie so we needed a little snack to tie us over.We gassed up in Grande Prairie ($3.56/gal) and then went across the street to the WM parking lot to prep dinner. It was chili dogs, so I opted for tomato & cheese on tortillas. I had picked up some YUMMY cherries and a HUGE tomato at a road side stand, which was a nice alternative. I checked with some people camped out in the parking lot and they said 1.5 hrs to Dawson Creek, so we decided to push it. We hit some big hills (both up and down) and Eric smoked a crane on one. LOL!! We are usually the slowest vehicle.

When we got to the Mile 0 traffic circle and didn't see anyone around, I told Eric to pull into the lot to get the shot of the rig at the start of the Mile 0 sign. There are actually 2 Mile 0 signs (about a block apart), but we got the one you see on so many photos. We've heard that there is often a line to get your photo there, so we thought it was a good time to stop. A local woman drove up and took several photos for us.The campground was sold-out when we arrived but he had some no-shows so we got a spot. We were very thankful cause we didn't want to go looking for other spots or return to Walmart on the other end of town. There is one big caravan group camped here til Friday and a few people from some other caravans. I might email ahead this morning and see if I can get a reservation for tonight.

Plan for today? We haven't discussed it yet, but I think we will return to our original plan and head up to Ft. Nelson, which is 200-some miles. That would mean we have less than 200 miles on Friday to get to Laird Hot Springs. I would use a hot spring soak RIGHT now! We are in a back in space and have the Jeep unhooked, so we will probably load up in a little while and go to the other mile marker for pics and hit the visitor center for info. Maybe see what else there is in town.

As always, we don't know when we will have internet again. We've done all our updates and have loaded video to You Tube and photos to photobucket. See the Trip Pics and Vlog links below the header to see those. We are not posting all pics & video entries here on the blog.


Sam&Donna Weibel said...

Way to go, you made it to Alaska, looks like the kids are enjoying it. I remember when we were younger and took the boys, we used to eat up the miles, Now we take a more leisurely pace, Get a good soak in the hot springs and you will be good as new. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

Allie, Katie and Harper's Mom said...

Gosh, this trip looks amazing!! The pic Eric put up with the station wagon really takes me back, we use to have a tent trailer just like that one in the photo! Enjoy the rest of your trip, it looks like you all are having a blast!



Dawn said...

I am having so much fun following along with you guys. I think we need to try this some day although I think EmmaLi would die of bordom! I'm thinking she'll drive me nuts just going to MI next week. LOL

Paul and Helen's Adventures said...

I'm glad to see that you're doing so well, but I don't know if I could handle the itinerary you set for yourself. Helen and I start out in the morning with no idea how far we'll get or where we'll camp. Sometimes a beautiful campground and sometimes a dump. Sometimes even Walmart. I hope you get the chance to REALLY relax at the hot springs and enjoy the rest of the trip.

Paul, Now in Ninilchik.

Kim said...

How FUN...
LOVE this..
I am sooo jealous..

TennRebel said...

You caught us! You are really trucking. We are at Triple G Campground (Westend). If it wasn't raining I would go looking for your rig. Maybe I will see you at the Hot Springs tomorrow.

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