Blogs > News-Herald Food and Travel

Food and travel captivate Janet Podolak, who chronicles both for The News-Herald. Get the back story of her three decades of stories here. Guest bloggers and fellow News-Herald staffers also periodically share details of their trips.

Friday, June 20, 2008

alberta or Mars

At times it seems I've come to Mars instead of Alberta, in Western Canada. I'd been to Calgary, Edmonton, Banff and Lake Louise before and thought I knew the province. But the Badlands are something else again. Striped beehive shaped hills, strange landforms that look like fantastic creatures are in valleys carved by ancient rivers from snowmelt and faraway glaciers.

The sandstone layers hold more dinosaur and other fossil bones than anywhere else on earth. The creatures are found largely whole because they died and were washed down ancient, raging rivers, where they were quickly covered and preserved by silt that eventually turned to stone. Dinosaur Provincial Park is a UNESCO Wolrd Heritage site, just like the pyramids, because it has the world's largest concentration of dinosaurs.

Tonight I will be celebrating the beginning of summer with a midnight full moon float trip down the Milk River, so-named by Lewis and Clark who came through after rainstorms washed the Badlands silt into the river turning it a milky color.

Last night we arrived in Brooks, where huge Lake Newell was created as a irrigaiton project years ago. It captures the Bow River into a lake so large it can barely be seen across. Lake Shore Bed & Breakfast Spa was my delightful bed last night. Its perched at the edge of the lovely lake with its large population of white pelicans. Negative ion air, chlorine free showers and fine linens are part of the hospitality, and I just finished a delightful breakfast of shrimp omelet, red peppers with cream cheese and tequila lime sauce. . YUM!

In between the Badlands areas and the lake, though, are vast expanses of flat prairie punctuated by oil and gas wells with herds of grazing Black Angus cattle and buffalo, both of which Ive eaten at night. Today's photos are from my friend Glen Cameron, a Toronto guy who was here last year and kindly emailed them to me so I could share with you.


Blogger crystal said...

Alberta is named after Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert. Princess Louise was the wife of the Marquess of Lorne, Governor General of Canada from 1878 to 1883. Lake Louise, the village of Caroline, and Mount Alberta were also named in honour of Princess Louise. Alberta has enjoyed a relatively high rate of growth in recent years, mainly because of its burgeoning economy. Between 2003 and 2004, the province had high birthrates, relatively high immigration, and a high rate of interprovincial migration when compared to other provinces.

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November 11, 2008 at 5:55 AM 

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