The Road Trip Diaries : Whistler to Golden | Part Two
This post is Part Two of my Whistler to Golden Road Trip. Check out Part One here!
For pretty much the whole trip, I'd been hangin' out to get to Revelstoke, which is where the real mountains start.
Revvy (as the locals call it), is a pretty sweet winter town, and it's known for it's epic skiing and snowboarding. The pic below is taken from the drive up the Meadows in The Sky Parkway, in Mount Revelstoke National Park, looking down over Revelstoke, which is totally worth doing if you're ever driving through the area, and the road is open. Canada take their National Parks pretty seriously, so for most of them there's a fee to enter, even if you're just making a quick stop at a historical site or something. It's less than about $10 per person, but if you grab a day pass it'll get you into any other National Park, of which there are a few around the same area.
Below (left) is a snap from the side of the road, driving from Revelstoke to Golden, through the epic Rogers pass. Bottom right is from a random little town called Field, which is just off Highway 1, on the drive from Golden to Lake Louise.
I'd booked my accommodation for the night in Golden, and somewhere along the road I decided to buy an actual map book, because sussing out roads and distances on an iPhone screen 24/7 is a real bitch. And plus, I have mad love for map books... I can literally sit down and read them like real books.
So it was only when I bought my little old map book that I discovered Lake Louise was only about an hour's drive from Golden. Knowing that I was going to hit Golden about 3pm, I figured I'd check-in to my motel, chill out for a bit, then get back on the road and hit up Lake Louise. I wasn't planning to travel & stay overnight any further East, and having not been to the infamous Lake Louise before, I couldn't turn down the chance.
The days are so insanely long these days, and Golden is on Calgary time, meaning sunset was at about 10pm that night. Crazy town.
Somehow I'd timed my arrival to Lake Lousie juuuust right. I got there at about 5pm, when most people had left for the day (because hanging out at probably the most photographed Lake in Canada, along with a shit tonne of tourists isn't my idea of a good time) and right when the sun was just about to go behind the mountains.
My verdict on Lake Louise? Well... It's a pretty epic lake. With a big fuck-off Fairmont motel RIGHT behind it (check out these Google Image pics)... And an absolute tonne of tourists that visit it every single day.
This quote sums up any touristy place pretty well for me :
"The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see."
— Gilbert K. Chesterton
With the insanely late sunset, and the super warm weather, it was impossible to not be outside every moment possible, so after driving around all day I grabbed my camera and went for a wander around the streets of Golden. Even though this town is insanely small, and it's more of a stop-over town than anything, I kind of loved it. The vibe of these towns is awesome... Everyone is going somewhere. You stop over, grab some food, maybe stay a night, and then you're out on the road again.
The good part about staying in these random small towns is that accommodation is mega cheap too... Sometimes I'll switch it up and stay in hostels for parts of the trip (mostly just to meet people), and motels for other parts, but this time around there weren't many half-decent hostels in the towns I was looking at — so motels it was.
I stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Golden, an almost-brand-new motel, for just over $100 a night... Throw a king bed and mountain views in there, and it was one hell of a sweet deal. (Compared to at least $140 a night to stay in somewhere like Revelstoke or Banff, in an older, less awesome hotel).
So, that's my first decent road trip of the summer! Stoked.
To my Northern Hemisphere pals, have you got any sick trips planned for the summer? Where are you heading?