7 –22 – 04 Pincher Creek, Alberta to Calgary, Alberta
The Kawi dealer couldn't take anything until Monday,
and I didn't want to wait. I was on the 22 again, and after a few rural gyrations,
on my way to Calgary and a dealership there. It was a cold
ride. I ran through sprinkles, but not
enough to get wet. I thought about breaking out the cold weather gloves.
The Alberta/ 22
runs along the eastern slopes of the Rockies.
The area is a very green and rolling ranch land, with a few oil derricks scattered here and there.
There were many small creeks in the ravines and a few rivers. The sky was mostly cloudy, but not very organized.
I stopped in the small town of Black
Diamond for lunch. What is neat about Canada is that the small
towns have kept their uniqueness. There
were few fast food chains; few ATM gas stations, and I had a momentary
panic the first time I had to push the old-fashioned gas pump lever (side mounted where the nozzle hooks up), trying to
remember how to start the gasoline flowing. I ate at a small Chinese restaurant.
The food was good, and the owner stopped by to exchange a few
words and to check for my assurance that I was enjoying my meal.
Next up was the trip to
Calgary. In spite of the best efforts
of a few people, I still managed to botch their directions. I needed the 2 to get to the Blackfoot Trail to Blackfoot Motorcycles. I needed to turn off 22 onto a route
perpendicular to my direction of travel. Instead, I took 22 all the
way to the 1 freeway, where the speed limit jumped to 110 kph. When I got off the 1, I was thoroughly
lost. The first set of directions put me in
the general vicinity of where I was supposed to be. Stopping
for a second set of instructions and clarification, the person I was
talking to was confused. He thought he had just given me
directions to the motorcycle shop. It turned out that
only minutes previously, another rider on an identical red KLR had stopped
and asked for the same set of directions. Doppelganger? The second set of directions put me at the dealership.
Major thoroughfares in Calgary are labeled *.Trail
Road. I hated driving in the city. The traffic was erratic and my driving the
same. There were several last second lane
changes to make turns, as intersections popped up faster than expected. The bike work was scheduled for the next day. Meanwhile, the shop booked me into the
Blackfoot Inn, which appeared to be a “nice” hotel. My appearance didn't fit their decor.