Saturday, August 31, 2013

Yellowknife, NWT Trip, Day 1

Up around 6:00, wanted to get an early start.

Got diesel and checked my oil at the gas station (something I kept forgetting to do during the week) and there was no oil on the dipstick at all! I had grabbed oil from my house, so dumped it in and got it back to within "normal" range. That's bad, good thing I checked it!

I headed north on Deerfoot and remember passing by 16th Ave. at 8:02am. On the way to Red Deer, I had electrical issues. I had bought a new electric cooler (DC and AC) from Canadian Tire a few days ago, and now my phone was saying it was almost dead, despite being plugged in in my car. I thought it had something to do with the electric cooler plugged in in the trunk.

I stopped in Red Deer at Canadian Tire and discovered that my phone charger had a bad connection where it plugged into the phone. Thank goodness it was not the new cooler. Got oil and some new DC phone charging stuff at Canadian Tire before heading back on the highway. I turned off the QE2 just after Red Deer, figured the other highways would provide better scenery and I could also avoid Edmonton.

Nothing exciting happened, and I arrived at Twin Lakes Provincial Recreation Area shortly after 6:00pm. As I was arriving at the campground, there was a nasty looking storm cloud and it rained a bit as I drove in. Nice campground, not too busy. I got my tent up and started a fire, and looked up and the clouds were swirling. I knew it was going to rain, so decided to not throw any more wood on the fire and instead grabbed all the stuff I needed for hot dogs and tailed it to the picnic shelter. It started raining as I ran and once there, it poured and hailed and lightninged and thundered. One bright flash and a second later, one of the loudest thunders I have ever heard. The storm was on top of us. I made hotdogs while the storm unleashed its fury. After 30 minutes or so, it subsided, so I headed back to the tent. The inside of my tent was a bit wet along one side. After investigation, I realized my tent was not leaking, but the hail and rain was coming down as such an angle and with such force, that it was bouncing off the ground, under my fly and getting into the tent a bit. I dried it up and tightened the fly wires a bit better and got everything ready and climbed in bed and started reading. It started raining again and more lightning and thunder. It was cool! As I reading, I had the scare of a lifetime. There was the brightest flashes of light I've ever seen, instantly followed by the loudest thunder ever. Crazy! My tent handled it fine, no leaks or anything.

Eventually the storm passed and I fell asleep.