As nice as Jasper is, it’s always nice to leave the bubble and venture out. Yesterdays’ adventure begun with being awake at 5:30am and a whole lot of coffee (for me anyway.) The magnificent seven comprised of Georgia (shotgun), Bec, Nicola, Erana, Anita, Jacko and myself.
Once we were on the road, we found ourselves stopping in at McDonald’s in Hinton for the first break. The drive to Edmonton isn’t scenic, there aren’t mountains to stare at although the trees were covered in snow so it resembled a winter landscape.
If you can get the motivation to be awake at an ungodly hour and hit the road before sunrise, you’ll be rewarded once dawn arrives. On Highway 16, you’ll find yourself chasing the sunrise around the bends and it’s definitely a sight to see. Yesterdays’ display lasted for about half an hour with vibrant colours illuminating the sky.
Once we had reached Edson, the road conditions and visibility weren’t ideal. Fortunately sunglasses help with the glare and singing along to some bangers/road trip sing alongs (Shania Twain anyone) helped lighten the mood.
We were making good time on the drive until I decided to turn too early before a rest area and attempted to do a u-turn. I learned the hard way that side roads are lined with powder (knee deep in this case) and I managed to get the van bogged quite well.
It was a team effort to try and get the van out of the powder by pushing but it wasn’t successful. Thankfully, an incredibly selfless truck driver came to our aid after a few of the girls waved him down and he pulled us out.
The remainder of the drive was uneventful and we arrived at the mall around 11:30am. There’s definitely a lot to explore and you could easily spend a few days there if you wanted to try out the shooting range, relive your childhood at Galaxyland, go for a splash at the indoor Waterworld, watch the Sea Lion Show, sit back and relax at the movie theatre or eat all the food at any one of the many food courts scattered around the mall complex.
For us girls, we were all content with browsing the shops and window shopping (and by window shopping I actually mean spending money and then wondering how we will now get our items home once it’s time to leave).
Arms filled with shopping bags and empty purses, it was time to head back home. Another 370kms and 4.5 hours on the road and we were back where we started. It was a casual 19 hour day from start to finish but it was a good day.
If you do intend to spend a whole day at the mall, you should consider staying over night because walking around a mall for a day is tiring and having to drive 700kms or so in a day is doable but no ideal. So treat yourself to a hostel, motel or hotel in town and then hit the road and chase a sunrise the next day instead.