Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Getting Warmed Up At The Hot Springs

With all the dog barking going on around here at night, I'm sure there are critters roaming the back forty, therefore the game camera.  Sure enough, when I checked yesterday morning, I caught sight of another critter.  Wait for it ........... 

Okay, not as exciting as THESE guys lounging along the 300+ miles of pastures in Canada.  Seriously, every few miles we saw bears and bison scarfing down the local green offerings.

Notice I said bison instead of buffalo.  I know not the difference ... I just know you call them bison.  Our next destination was Laird Hot Springs.  Let me just say Dan has the magic touch.  There is a campground there, but if you are good looking, smile a lot and tell them you are too long, they MAY just let you park in "Buses Only", right at the trailhead to the springs.

It's also helpful if there are no busses.  Otherwise, if you are big like we were, you have to park clear across the highway with the trucks and road noise all night long.  

The Springs were much bigger than I expected after a short walk along the boardwalk.  The umbrella?  This was one of maybe four days on the entire trip that it rained as we were heading towards Alaska.

And the Hot Springs are HOT!!  Thank goodness there were cooler sections.  Others pointed out the hot spots which I tentatively tried.  OUCH!!  I didn't stay long.

The far end was the hottest, right where the water comes up out of the ground.  Most everyone congregated down at the cooler end.  I think I could have stayed here a week getting warmed up.

We were off again, driving through the most fabulous scenery ever.  It's probably a good thing I was following the Chance rig because I would still be up there taking pictures along the roadside.  

Dan was nice enough to stop often for critters, knowing how the critter fanatic was foaming at the mouth in the rig behind him.  My every answer to his walkie-talkie question was YES!!   We only saw a couple of moose, this mama and one of the biggest bulls I've every seen, even in pictures.  He was HUGE, but sadly we were in a place with no turnaround and no place to stop.  

We spotted quite a few mountain sheep along the way too.  There was a herd of these guys right on the road as we drove by Muncho Lake.  Don't test me on that one.  There is one thing about following someone and not having to look at a map or worry about where we are going ... which I totally loved by the way ... you have a tendency to forget exactly which road you were on!!

In a couple of cases we saw herds of bison moving along the pasturelands.  Lots of babies and youngsters were with this group.

And the BEAR ... OH THE BEAR!!!  They were literally everywhere, chomping down on the dandelions.

I don't think I've mentioned my bear adventures.  We went camping a lot in the Sierra Mountains when I was a kid.  My parents would drop each of us off at a site, to sit on the picnic table while they drove around to see if they found something they liked better.  

I saw a bunch of people coming along, following a mama bear with a cub.  We had been thoroughly indoctrinated in BEAR, like we were snakes.  I thought ... those people are stupid for following so close to a mama with a baby.  

Uh oh ... they are coming MY way.  I got up on top of the picnic table.  Oh NO ... they are coming CLOSER!!  In a flash, that darn cub ran straight for me and jumped up on the picnic table WITH ME!!  I literally froze ... thinking I was now going to die because mama was going to kill me.

Scared to death, I said SHOO .. and clapped my hands together once.  Thank goodness the baby jumped down at mom's growl and I lived to see another day.  Unfortunately, that wasn't our only encounter that day.  But that's another story.

So needless to say, I give bears a wide berth.  Same goes for bison.  I kept my telephoto lens on the camera so I never got too close.

There was the occasional native wildlife roaming the roads as well.  Good grief ... who in their right mind would ride their BIKE when there are critters like that along the way.  Scary if you ask me!!

We are now heading to Watson Lake, Yukon Territory.  Surprisingly, while cleaning yesterday (a miracle in itself), I found my book with a list of everywhere we stopped for fuel, along with most of the RV Park names.  Maybe that's a sign .........


  1. Let's see...up on table, baby bear jumps up there, mama bear is near by...I sure hope dad had a clean pair of shorts for you to change into, I KNOW I would need a clean pair.

    1. I was definitely scared to death with Mom only 30 feet from me. I can't tell you how happy I was when my parents drove up.

  2. The bear adventure would have had me running which is what I know you're NOT supposed to do! All common sense would leave me, I know it.
    Beautiful hot springs.

    1. It's hard to run when you're frozen solid to the table! LOL