Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Train to Vancouver! (Contentment) 10

If we fasten our attention on what we have,
rather than what we lack,
a very little wealth is sufficient.
            Francis Johnson

After leaving Jasper I basically stared out the window of the dome car. I was hypnotized by those mountains I had longed to see. I would join conversations with the people in the now fully packed dome car but could not tear my eyes away from the magnificent views. I was happy. Someone announces the time change, I wind my watch back, it is now three hours behind where it had started just three days ago. My droopy eyes, my unkempt appearance and the kink in my neck are truly worth it to see this beauty so close. Both times I had done this trip by plane I had no idea just how much I was missing. It is so worth it.

 The rock face inches from my face and the wires running along the length of the tracks remind me that there are dangers travelling through these mountains. The wires are Slide Directors; if there happens to be a rock slide the wires will break warning the engineer of the danger ahead so he can stop the train. As I read this in my handy book a shiver runs down my spine at the thought. Just as quick we pass Moose Lake its soft blue reflecting waters calm me down, the clouds and sun bounce off its stillness. We pass many Lakes and Rivers the cold waters running down from the top of the snowy mountains making waterfall views abundant. It is like a postcard and I have to keep pinching myself to make sure I am not dreaming. I cannot believe I am here. I had stopped taking non-stop photos because I wanted my eyes to capture and hold these views in my brain without a lens in front of them.

We enter a very long tunnel a hush comes over the dome car, I look out into the darkness waiting for the sunlight to return. An older German couple announces to everyone “There is Mount Robson; it is the tallest mountain in the Rockies." It is magnificent we cannot see the top as a single gigantic cloud blocks its view.

At this time Liz from Scotland bids “Goodbye” she will return later. While looking out the window I am reminded this is the last leg of this incredible journey and I have yet to go to the back of the train to explore. Liz has been inviting me. I decided this would be the best time; I head down the stairs leaving my bag in my seat with M. I walk pass the snack bar and turn the corner. A very narrow car with sleeping compartments greets me. I must admit at this time I am feeling a little claustrophobic there were bunks to the left and tiny windows to the right of these cars. I find the swaying of the train more prominent back here as I was used to sitting four cars back from the engine. The farther I walked the more it seemed to sway and throw me off balance. Every time you met someone in the hallway it was so narrow you would have to hug the wall. If you came to a bend you may have had to back up to let others pass. I finally make my way to the dining car. I see nicely dressed waiters serving people nice looking food. I am glad I never ate here as my stomach was already unsettled from the swaying walk back here.

 I finally caught up with Liz she is so nice she showed me her little berth I was impressed, it was small yet very efficient the bunk beds looked very comfortable. She took me across the hall and showed me the shower she shared with others, I would have loved a shower by this time and Liz offered but I graciously declined. I was getting used to roughing it. I thanked her and hugged her good bye; we would meet later in my dome car. I walked back through the narrow halls at a quicker pace, swaying and hitting the wall a few times when the train went round a bend. I passed the dining car where people were still eating their lunch on fancy plates with lots of cutlery, served by waiters dressed handsomely. I backed up when a family came round the bend at the same time as I. The children were laughing and heading back to their berth. I pass the snack bar where I had bought a sandwich the day before from Sammy; I walked up the stairs to my dome car and was greeted by all. “What did you think?” I like it here. I think Economy class was a good choice for me.

I stare out the window enjoying the view from my prime seat in this open space. The mountains are still here and I decide I am not going anywhere till night time. I have a two-seater bed/seat for the night already waiting. I watch as a partially frozen waterfall cascades down the mountain, it is so close to the train I could actually touch it if the window would open. The train slows to give us a good look. The announcement says Pyramid Falls.

We enter a little town called Blue River; this will be the last stop during daylight hours. I look in my book and see what is to come. I must say I am a little disappointed to see so many beautiful towns and sights would be covered in darkness when we pass through. I am glad there is a bright moon again. I am exhausted and hope I will be able to stay awake for our last night.



  1. What amazingly beautiful views. I am so glad you got to go.

  2. What a gorgeous trip. When I was a kid we would go to Colorado quite often, as my Mom's brother lived there. The mountains were breathtaking. I'm glad you are sharing this trip with us.

    Cindy Bee

  3. Thank you Buttons...for taking me through your incrediable view of the mountain scenes...

    Auntie M :)

  4. well, i'm glad you took the opportunity to see the other part of the train. :)

  5. The most beautiful mountains--EVER. And YOU had a front row seat. Worth savoring and enjoying the contentment.

  6. i can understand why you'd hate to sleep through any of these stunning vistas!

    btw...i was kind of amused that the sandwich guy's name was sammy. ;o)

  7. Such gorgeous scenery!! You know the story of the woman who had a chair strapped to the cowcatcher of the train so she would have a good view going that route? Was that Mrs. Sir John A? Or the wife of a GG?

  8. LOL... you sound just like a little one who can't wait for Christmas and won't go to bed.But then... neither could I. Such beauty!

  9. Looks lovely, but so cold! So pleased you enjoyed :) Your friend M xoxox

  10. im loving these stories. we would like to take our babes on a train trip one day. and those mountains are breath taking!

  11. Hi Buttons! I am glad that you mentioned Moose Lake and Mount Robson - I live in Prince George and my family is in Edmonton, so I drive Highway 16 multiple times a year. I always love going past those two landmarks. I am really enjoying your tales from your trip!


  12. Yes, I agree - your dome car during the day sounds a beaut spot, and your choice of seats for the night... while probably not some peoples' idea of comfort, you can always make do for your own reasons can't you.
    Gosh that scenery sounds absolutely mind blowing B... your photos tantalise! I do know what you mean by stopping taking photos and just enjoying the moment. It takes the pressure off somewhat and kind of lets you soak up the scenery and your experience of being there.
    So enjoying your trip. I often visit, but cannot load your blog up properly (the problem is at our end-broadband is not all it's cracked up to be!) but, today, I'm successful. Yay! xx


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