Canada compared to many countries is rich in nature, wildlife, natural diversity and immensity of area. The second largest landmass after Russia. True, some of the northern areas have a long winter. Also true that even some of the more southern areas suffer from bitter temperatures during the winter season. I have travelled this great country and the northern part of North America from coast to coast several times. Distances are mind boggling. Just think: With a total area of (+/-) 8,985,000 sq.km and a population density of around less than 4 per sq.km, Canada compares to Germany which has a (+/-) area of 357,022 sq.km and a population density of 235 per sq.km, like a wide open space where one can travel for days without seeing anybody or any human settlement. Wow !
In 2002 I took the trip across, starting from West of Calgary (Cochrane) near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and going East, using the Trans Canada Highway, then returning from the Atlantic travelling all the way back West until I reached Victoria, Vancouver Island. [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Canada_Highway ]. With my new Dodge Caravan minivan that I had customized to create my home in it. Alone and as a woman, no worries. Never once a problem. Using the nice little Dodge Caravan is handy. I had removed the inside seats to create a (foam) bed, the small rear compartment serving as a kitchen, complete with an electric one burner to cook, big canisters for water, extension cords, flashlights, first aid kids and much more. All compacted in. While the remaining seats out front served for moving my office stuff and my suitcases at night to crawl back to sleep. On camp grounds I always stopped for the shower room of course. During that year we had a lot of rain and never ending rain storms. Which resulted before I even started in that my car battery went dead on me while opening the rear hatch door too long.
The first leg of this long voyage had been to Montreal, Quebec. Usually around the Great Lakes (L. Superior and Huron) it takes – with a slow vehicle – 3 days, while from Alberta across Saskatchewan and Manitoba it can be done in a day. Starting June 2002 and arriving Montreal after 4 days and around 4,000 km later. I took my time. There were sections of the Highway which had been completely flooded from that endless rain. Coming through Ontario, sections of the Highway were closed and bridges out. I had to drive around this.
In Montreal I rented a dorm at Mac Gill University for weeks. July 2002 one of the hottest summers. It was so hot during the night that I actually slept in my van in their parking area, instead of in that room. Spending some time in Montreal, which I had visited several times before, is always a treat, especially Vieux-Montréal. [ http://www.sdcvieuxmontreal.com/ ]. [Chez moi j’ai toute une bibliothèque de livres et guides de Montréal et Québec. Util = Centre Infotouriste Centre-ville, 1255 Peel; et Infotouriste centre à Vieux-Montréal, 174 Notre-Dame Est.].
Montreal exploded during that summer of 2002 – the FIFA World Cup hosted by South Korea and Japan, and won by Brazil. Montreal has a large number of Brazilians. All major city streets were closed and Brazilians celebrating. At Mac Gill Uni Lounge we spent all night watching the games.

In between I also made a day trip from Montréal to Québec Ville, distance 230 km. Because of the tremendous traffic in a city the size of Montreal and since Mac Gill is on Rue Sherbrouke #138, the center of it, I left at 4 AM very early, to avoid the traffic. One hour to be out of the city, then onto #40 Trans Canada off to Quebec City.  This city, also the seat of Government of the Province Québec, is the most beautiful city in North America (even when considering New Orleans, LA, and San Francisco). [Ville de Québec next time more.] [This blog covers a long trip and will be continued.] trip2002AB.QU trip2002AB.QU2

Advertisements