PUPs Go West – Day 16, Elk Island

From Canmore, AB to Elk Island National Park, AB.
It was a long drive, plus had rain the first 3 hours so not much in the way of photos.
* Elk Island canoeing with rain, hail and lightning
Diving music: It was raining so we went for Bowie to cheer us up.

I got a later start than usual. Woke up to heavy rain which put a sluggishness in our routine. Pugs got wet on the morning walk and just wanted to sleep after that. We had a 5 hour drive north to Elk Island National Park – just west of Edmonton.

The park has Astotin Lake with canoe rentals. We were going to go out for 2 hours. The park was busy but not overcrowded. There was a canoe rental place. See our happy smiles. Now, see those dark clouds on the horizon? Should have got out and got my money back.

Water was a little choppy but easily handled. Eve was just glad she was not in the water. We used the island ahead as our paddling point. The wind was coming in from my right – and so were the dark clouds.

I saw kayakers ahead of us. However, the big dark cloud rolled in as we got about half way there. I decided to aim for the campground shore. The kayaks was also heading that way.

The drops started coming down and I headed for the shore. 2 kayakers where also with us and followed. The next thing we know it turns to hail, bulleting us and bouncing around the canoe. I’m at the shore but unable to beach the canoe. I just hold on the a tree while Eva and Raisin give me miserable, hateful looks. I slowly paddled my way along the shore back to the rental place.

Between the hail bullets and the pug stink eye, it was not a pleasant experience. We headed back to the tent and waited for the rain to stop. I reflected on how lucky I’d been so far on the trip – 15 days of sunshine.

After the rain stopped I made dinner. They got steak for supper as a way of making amends. Followed the GPS on our way before the park and went to the M&M Food Market. All frozen but ready to cook by the time we were ready.

We had an isolated campsite #32. No one around. It was a nice, forest setting. We rested and listened to the wind in the trees.

The park charged me $8 for unlimited firewood. Normally I pay that for 1 bundle. However, the wood was in an exposed shed so was wet. It just smoldered. No wonder it was such a deal. I fired up the Coleman stove and it was ready in no time. The pugs were happy with the steak and all was forgiven.

Tomorrow is another long drive to Prince Albert National Park in Saskatchewan. We will stay on a northern route. Weather looks to be better. We all went to bed early.

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