I am actually in Auckland now and I am doing a catch up on my blog entries. You will be pleased to know that I've decided not to detail every day of my Moose bus trip! I have added lots of photos and they are pretty self explanatory, so I'm just going to put this one blog entry on about it.
It was such a fantastic week, probably one of the best I’ve ever had ! I had really great people in my group and it's amazing how quickly you bond when you spend, literally 24 hours a day together. The group changed a bit through the week because we had options to jump off the bus and stay longer at places. The core of us stayed together though and on the way back to Vancouver we all jumped off for an extra night in Banff.
The weather was fabulous all week (perfect for jumping in to glacial lakes)! The bus was really nice and the driver was brilliant fun. We had the music on all the time and played a lot of silly games. The acoustic version of a track by the Foo Fighters, called ‘Times Like These’ was played a lot and it has become my current track of my trip because we were having such a good time.
It was a very tiring week because we did a lot of activities and walking. Also, we didn't arrive at the most hostels until about 7pm, then we would stay up until at least 2am and we left at 8.15am most mornings. In between arriving and leaving each hostel, we had to have dinner, unpack, get drunk and repack. It was quite chaotic and I didn't get chance to check emails at all.
As you can see from my photos, we saw sooo many unbelievably beautiful sights on the trip, but the highlights for me have to be -
Seeing bears! - How cool is that! We saw a bear on three occasions but it was difficult to get photos cos they were half hidden behind bushes and we weren't allowed off the bus. We have to stay on the bus for our safety and the bears because it's not good for the bears to get used to humans. We would know that there was a bear near the side of the road when we saw loads of cars parked up in the middle of nowhere (known as a Bear Jam). The third bear jam was the best cos the bear was really easy to see and it stood up on this bit of wood. Unfortunately, the park ranger came and fired a flare at it to frighten it back in to the woods. I managed to get quite a good photo of it!
Columbian Ice field - This actually looked better from a distance cos all the glaciers coming off it looked like icing melting over a cake. We walked up to the edge of it but the actual ice field is on top of the mountain and is too dangerous for us to get on to, without proper equipment. Apparently it is huge, 300+ km long and 300+mt deep. There are markers showing how quickly the ice field is receding and it is amazingly fast.
Glacial lakes - Jumping in to these was brilliant! They were freezing but it was definitely worth it. We jumped off a bridge into Emerald Lake and we ran into Bow Lake. The trick is to, jump straight in and not feel the water first. However, this was a little tough at Lake Louise and we had to clamber over small rocks to get in. It was unfortunate that Lake Louise was coldest and it took the longest time to get in to! I went fully in though and I loved it (when I got out I did anyway)! You don't actually feel the cold for about 4 seconds and you think to your self ‘hey this isn’t too bad’. However, then it cuts in and it actually hurts, but then you quickly go numb. On each occasion, all the other tourists lined up to take photos of us cos they thought we were crazy! The lakes were all incredibly beautiful and the water always looked bright green cos they were glacial. In fact I think that the lakes with the mountains behind are the most beautiful things that I have ever seen.
Skydiving - this has a blog of its own cos it's so funny! I’m just going to write it now, move on and have a look at it