The trip to Fort Smith was uneventful. However the one challenge I haven't talked much about on this trip is the bugs. Namely horseflies and mosquitoes. We have never encountered so many of these in all our travels, including Alaska. They have been so bad that at times we have limited our walking and hiking and sitting outside. Add to that the fire bans and evening fire pit visits have been seldom.
The trip to Fort Smith was the first time we allowed those nasty critters to totally stop our sightseeing and walking plans though. We applied 2 layers of bug repellent and still couldn't gain any comfort. So we took some photos of the salt flats but not from too close. And we couldn't get anywhere close to the rapids on Slave River for a great photo.
But the town of Fort Smith was a pleasant surprise! Don had visited a few years ago during a work trip, and noted that the community seemed to have pulled up its boot straps in the cleanliness area. We observed the residential areas, and although the businesses weren't plentiful, they were very nice. And I had the best cappuccino this trip at the Rusty Raven Gallery and Gifts. I can guarantee you that is a strong determining factor for me!
Although the roads were not very busy on this day trip we did encounter these young men making their way south. Quite friendly, although they were looking a little bushy.
Our solstice evening was spent visiting and reminiscing. A perfect end to the NWT part of this adventure.
We are starting the journey home tomorrow, and although Don and I would typically drive the 10 hours and just be there, we are going to take a few days and relax. Don has mentioned several times that when we return to Alberta highways he will kiss the pavement. Turns out he was correct. I didn't know he was this traumatized! LOL
This trip to the Territories has been amazing. The scenery is breathtaking. The skies endless blue oceans. The waters and waterfalls strong, you easily fall in the spells they cast, making you want to see more or spend just another few moments watching. You gain a new respect for the people who live here, as it is easy to imagine the challenges the weather offers in the winter months. But also easy to imagine the land covered in a still prairie whiteness, and the sense of community that weather and these roads require. Miles of endless trees line lanes of highway, spattered with wildlife, allow your imagination to wander as you travel.
I'm not sure if you will hear from us for a while, until our next adventure. We are spending a few days with all our kids at Ole MacDonald's Farm by Stettler. CANNOT wait to have all our babies on the beach together!!