Monday, August 31, 2015

Day 3 - Monday, August 31 - Holland Patent to Sudbury, Ontario

Starting mileage: 246    Starting time: 7:40am
Ending mileage: 722  Ending time: 6:00pm

This is the first of our long days of non-stop driving to our first main destination, Glacier National Park. We drove an even 500 miles.

We decided to take the less busy route through Watertown, NY, Alexandria Bay, Brockville and up to the Trans-Canada highway just west of Ottawa and then to Sudbury.

The traveling was good although there was considerable construction along the roads in Canada but we could make up time with traffic moving considerably faster than the speed limits...

On the way up, we passed the Maple Ridge wind farm near Lowville, NY which is the largest wind facility in NYS, with 195 turbines generating a maximum of 321 MW. It is quite impressive to see so many huge wind turbines spread across the countryside.

Traveling north in Canada was similar to traveling north in NY, with many farms growing corn and soybeans. In Canada there were fields of oats and wheat and something one doesn't see in the U.S.: fields of hemp. We don't know if it is being grown for seeds, fiber or both,

We were looking for a place to eat lunch when we were lucky to find a small park next to the Mississippi Falls on the Mississippi River - didn't know Ontario also had a Mississippi.It was very pleasant eating left-over pizza and fruit for lunch along the riverside.

Once we arrived west of Ottawa, we followed along the Ottawa river much of the way. Much of the area is pretty rural and it looks like the main industry is logging to the south of the highway and boating and camping to the north along the river.

When I was growing up, I often traveled through Canada to my grandparents house in Wisconsin and remembered the hills for miles around Sudbury were completely bare due to the pollution from the huge nickel mine and refinery there. The air always smelled of sulfur and I often wondered what it did to the people living there. The pollution now seems to be gone and the hills are covered with small white birch and pine trees.

We stopped for the night at the Quality Inn in Sudbury and had dinner at an Irish pub - we were very ready for glasses beer.

We made a reservation for a hotel in Thunder Bay, Ontario for tomorrow night - this is a little over 600 miles.

Day 3 route

David and Betty Adler with Shona

Maple Ridge Wind Farm

Entering Canada

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Day 2 - Sunday, August 30, Indian Lake to Holland Patent (David's mom's house)

Mileage: 168

It is a beautiful morning in Indian Lake with clear skies and little wind.

It was a perfect time to go kayaking to the cove on the the other side of the lake with the water like a mirror at times and a few ripples when the wind starts up. There are no other boats on the lake early in the morning. Near the cove there were three loons diving for fish. A black cormorant flew over, an unusual sight on the lake. On the way back, there were a few boats with people fishing but it was still very quiet.

We needed to load up the car and close up the cabin, turning off the water and hot water heater, before going to the Indian Lake Association board meeting at another board member's house a few miles down the road.

Our cabin

View of Indian Lake from our deck

Last time kayaking for the season

Day 2 Route

Day 1 - Saturday, August 29 - Home to Indian Lake

Reset the car trip odometer to 0. It is a beautiful clear day with temperatures in the mid-70s

Our road trip is starting today with a detour to our cabin on Indian Lake to participate in meetings today and tomorrow. Carmen is the secretary for our camp association and also the secretary for the Indian Lake Association. I am also the web master for the Indian Lake Association.

It is difficult to forecast the travel times but our plan is to travel:

  • Home to Indian Lake
  • Indian Lake to my mother's house near Utica
  • Through Niagara Falls and Canada around Lake Superior to Glacier National Park in Montana
  • Back to Banff National Park in Canada
  • Vancouver, BC
  • Victoria, BC
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Yosemite National Park
  • Sequoia National Park
  • IBM lab in San Jose
  • Daughter Anna in San Diego
  • Our friends the Fraser's in Los Alamos, NM
  • Back home to Woodstock
  • Two days later, travel to Carmen's mom's house in Maine
While we are away, Amelia will be using one of our cars and traveling up on weekends to check the house, get the mail and mow the lawn.

Leaving Home

Day 1 Route

Friday, August 28, 2015

Day -2, Thursday, August 27 - prequel - back at IBM

20 months into retirement, IBM made me an offer I couldn't refuse, to work 3 days a week as a "retiree supplemental". For the past few months I've been helping my old DB2 spatial team with some open source development and also assisting with customer issues - it is interesting and keeps my mind active. But now I'll get paid for it.

I had to go down to the IBM Poughkeepsie lab for the "onboard" process. While I will be working remotely from my home office, some things need to be done in person to verify that I am a legal citizen and fill out various forms.

While we will be traveling on vacation for the next 5+ weeks, I will be keeping in touch with the team in San Jose, CA and hope to meet with them as we travel down the California coast.