By: leelefever on December 8, 2005 - 8:19am
Well, we're about to get on a bus to Calgary to fly back to Seattle for a couple of days. What an awesome time we had here. Good people, good fun. The Banff Centre and the Banff New Media Institute put on quite an event along with RainCity Studios.
Below is a shot of Lloyd Hall, where we stayed for 4 nights. We're off to home to pack the last bit before leaving for good on Sunday.
By: leelefever on December 6, 2005 - 3:20pm
Man, dogsledding was a blast. There is something special about dog power - it's environmentally friendly, efficient and a bit unpredictable. We flipped our sled within about the first minute of the journey.
The route was about 6 miles round trip, we had 7 dogs and 4 people counting Jared, our trusty but rookie guide from Howling Dog Tours. The course was on a road beside a single lake called Spray Lakes (long story about the plural name). The landscape was unbelieveable and we got lucky with a bluebird day. Simply stunning.
The dogs, as we were told, were very friendly and like to give hugs. Upon meeting them, we found them to be very friendly, but not exactly huggable, like, say, a baby koala bear. Hugging one of the sled dogs would be more like hugging a squirming, barking, humping, wild animal that won't hurt you. It is very apparent that the dogs do love to work and are happiest while pulling a sled.
One of the most interesting scenes was right before we left. As the dogs get chained up, the excitement builds. It's starts with a little holwing and a bark, then more barks and soon enough it becomes a full-on chorus of 50+ dogs chomping at the bit to get moving- I could hear "NOW DAMMIT!" in the roar of the barks and howls. Some simply jumped up and down in place to express their excitement.
The shot below was taken right when we arrived, overlooking Spray Lakes. It's one of my favorites lately.
Dogsledding was an experience that we'll never forget and we feel very lucky to have had the opportunity. The Banff New Media Institute and other organizers of Blogs-n-Dogs deserve a lot of credit for a great event. Now, it's back to the blog workshop for another day or so...
And one more for good measure...
By: leelefever on December 6, 2005 - 9:32am
This morning we got up and ventured into the town of Banff for breakfast, we thought. We found coffee shops, but didn't come across any place to have a sit-down breakfast.
I'm sure I've never felt air so cold. Right now, weather.com says it's -13 (f), but feels like -24. It's so cold that the breathing in makes me cough and any moisture inside my nose gets frozen. Sachi's hair froze on the way.
Banff is a nice little town that obviously makes a living via tourism. It has a mix of chain and local stores along with all the things you expect of a ski town. Of course people come to Banff for the beauty of recreation of the whole area, not just the town.
I think this is Cascade Mountain, but I'm not 100% sure right now. The mountain looms over the town and really impresses us both.
We're just about to go dog sledding with the folks form the workshop, so there will be lots of pictures to share soon...
By: leelefever on December 5, 2005 - 11:11am
(This post is retrospective and done as a part of the Blogs-n-dogs
I was struck by a few things on the way from Calgary to Banff via the friendly Banff Airporter. As we left the airport, we wound through the city by the Bow River, which looked like a chunky slushy-drink flowing almost inperceptibly through the city. Nothing looks colder than a river filled with ice.
As we cruised along with sheets of snow sliding across the road, I noticed that our more-than-able driver was not wearing a seatbelt. Perhaps personal safety is on a sliding scale in Canada. I had my seatbelt on.
Any concerns of safety quickly abated as we reached the rockies and the conversation with Sachi, Roland and Monique went from geekery to scenery, geoligic uplift and plenty of ohhs and aahhhs for scenes like this...
By: leelefever on December 4, 2005 - 9:47pm
I'm quite sure that we have only begun to be perplexed by international tiolets. I didn't expect Canada to be the starting point.
Apparently, this one has two buttons and the size of the button indicates the amount of water used in a flush. It's an enviromentally friendly toilet, which sounds like a better toilet to me.
In case you're wondering, we don't plan to chronicle the various features of toilets around the world, but hey, it is kind of interesting and it's too cold to go outside.
By: leelefever on December 4, 2005 - 4:37pm
This is the first ever TwinF post from another country- Canada, feel the love. Holy crap is it cold up here, but it is a dry cold. It's 15 degrees (f) and getting down to 8 tonight. Along with being some of the coldest weather we've seen, it's the farthest north we've both been.
Behold, the first international location pin on the global map.
By: leelefever on December 3, 2005 - 10:00pm
Though it's not officially part of the trip, tomorrow we'll arrive in Banff Canada, our first international destination since starting the site. As you can see on our newly updated itinerary (from the About page), we'll be there from December 4-8th.
Lake Louise by Topato.
We're both really looking forward to Banff - we've wanted to go for a long time. I'll have to do some work on a workshop on blogs, but Sachi is pretty much home free to hit the slopes and be a ski-bum (what a loser). We'll both get to go dog sledding as part of the workshop, something we've never done that should be loads of fun. It should be a stark contrast to New Zealand in a month or so as well.
Like Hawaii, Banff will be a time to practice blogging for the big trip.