June 30-31: Oh Canada. We crossed over into Canada and started making our way towards Alaska. I don’t really think that it has hit me that we have driven from Florida all the way to Alaska yet. I don’t know if it will even hit me until after we are done with this trip. I have said this a million times before, but, this is just crazy. We thought of a dream and made it happen. Just goes to show you that anything is possible. Cliche? Yes. True. Absolutely it is. Canada has been great to us so far. Well, with the exception for having to wait in the American-Canada border security for three hours trying to get our gun legally registered. That’s a whooping pain in the ass, but, a necessary whooping pain in the ass. I wouldn’t want to be the foreigner in country with an unregistered gun. No thank you. Canada is wildly specific about the type of gun they allow. Shot guns are okay, but, not short barreled hand guns. They have a “stand your ground” policy, but, you can’t stand your ground with a gun. If someone comes at you to hurt you, my understanding is that you can’t defend yourself with a gun. Seems slightly off to me. Even the border patrol officer said that the laws are slightly corrupt for their guns. What country isn’t?! I will say this…don’t you dare try to sneak a gun or drugs or anything through the border. They will get you. We went through the border that was east of Vancouver, BC and they are known to arrest more people from attempted gun smuggling. They thoroughly searched through Callie for another gun that we might have (but didn’t have), even bringing a search dog in. Just be aware that they are anal about their laws and do some research on what’s allowed. Anyways, 3 long hours later and we were ready to set off through Canada. We decided to drive the Cassair Highway towards the northern section of the Alican Highway on the way to Alaska. It has been an absolutely beautiful drive. Some of the most amazing land was just coming across the border in British Columbia. You went through windy mountain passes and overlooked the river.
We have seen a bunch of wildlife while driving through Canada. So far we have seen 8 bears and one moose. One of the bears was crossing the road and we spooked it. It’s always fun to see those animals, especially from the comfort and protection of a car. If we ran into a bear on a trail, that would be a completely different story. Hints why we brought a shot gun in the first place. We aren’t taking any chances. Okay, lets talk about the terror of the mosquitoes up here. Holy crap. There are a lot of them and they are big and mean and annoying. The mosquitoes have been terrible. The moment…the moment we get out of the car to set up Callie for the night, we get surrounded by them. Just mobbed. We have tried to go do little hikes, but, always instantly regret it because of the bugs. It’s obnoxious. That’s okay though because we really have been spending most of our time in the car. I will say that I haven’t gotten used to our AM bug buzzing in my ear alarm yet. It seems like every morning that happens without fail. We have been moving pretty fast throughout Canada so far. Each day we do an average of 8 traveling hours. That’s wayyyy more than what we did in the states. Previously on this trip, we do a hour or two and then a hike. Not in Canada. The great thing about traveling through Canada is that there are a lot of free camping options all through the route. We have more freedom to stop or keep going knowing we can easily find a campsite for the night. We have found them through the app IOverlander. We didn’t know service for over three days while traveling through Canada and the IOverlander app still worked. That’s the great thing about it. It doesn’t require service to locate a campground or pull off. We have really enjoyed our campsites. One night we even talked and drank with these two Canadian men for 4 hours. We have met some of the coolest people. We met a French guy who is biking from Anchorage, AK to somewhere undecided in South America for a whole year. We met a women from Ontario who travels in her car solo and loves Arches National Park in Utah (me too). It just has been a super positive and amazing experience all around.
July 1: FOUR MONTHS. July 1 marks the four month mark of full-time traveling!!! AhHhHHHHHhhhhhhhh! That. IS. SO. AMAZING! I am just thankful and I am speechless. I am excited. I am just grateful. Let’s do a quick recap of the last four months. We have been to 20 National Parks: Great Smokey, Hot Springs, Great Sand Dunes, Rocky Mountain, Arches, Canyonlands, Capital Reef, Bryce Canyon, Zion, Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Sequioa, Kings Canyon, Yosemite, Golden Gate, Redwoods, Crater Lake, North Cascade, Mount Rainier, and Olympic National Parks. We have been to 14 states and two Canadian provinces: Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Yukon. We have meet so many amazing people along the way, some full-time travelers and some just passing by. It has been life changing. It has been just amazing. For our 4 month mark, we also celebrated Canada Day. July 1 is Canada’s day if you didn’t know. We didn’t know that until two days before we celebrated it. We got to see a small towns parade and go see the Boya Lake Park. WOW. This park was amazing. It is centered around the paradise blue, clear water of Lake Boya. It seemed wildly out of place, but, there is was…in the middle of Canada. We didn’t spend more then a hour there, but, it was just nice to get out of the car and dip my feet in cold water.
July 2-4: into Alaska. After 6 long days of driving through Canada, we made it to Alaska. I’m not going to lie. I cried a little bit from the amount of excitement I felt. We successfully were able to drive from Tampa, FL to Alaska. We have driven just shy of 17,000 miles.
We made it to our most Northern destination. It was an exciting moment. We were so ready for Alaska. We had made our black out curtains for the sun never setting at night. We had stocked up on food for the road. It was time. For the first time in Alaska, we found a small and locally-known campsite called Kelchina River off of Glenn Highway. It’s not a traditionally marked campground. It’s just a dirt road that led you towards a few open spots.
We found it through the app IOverlander. It was a really fun night. We ended up meeting this huge group of Alaskans who were camping just around the corner from us. They were setting out for a 4 days river rafting adventure the next morning. We spent 5 hours with these amazing people, drinking and sharing stories. It was bizarre because it was still light out when we finally went to sleep at 2AM.
Thank God for our black out curtains. More Alaskan adventures to come! Some of them completely out of service and some in service. I will try my best to remain consistent with blog postings, but, can’t promise anything due to that. Here’s to Alaska! Guys! We made it!!
New posts every Monday and Friday.