.All Trips / Alberta / Central Canada / North America

Exploring Midland Provincial Park

05 Midland Provincial Park (41)

Midland Provincial Park is located in Alberta’s Badlands and was established in 1979 to help conserve some of Alberta’s coal mining history.  The park was once the site of the Midland Coal Mine and the land was donated to the province after the mine closed.  The park is home to one of my favorite museums, the Royal Tyrrell, and adjoins the Red Deer River. 

Today’s post focuses on exploring the Midland Coal Interpretive Trail located roughly midway between the city of Drumheller and the Royal Tyrrell Museum.  This trail has a series of educational interpretive signs providing information about coal-mining in the area and to help you understand the artifacts on the grounds, A former mining office survives.

Coal Mining office, Midland Provincial Par

Coal Mining office, Midland Provincial Par

A rich …

Read More

Tagged , , , , , , ,
.All Trips / Alberta / Car Culture / Central Canada / North America

Great Cars along the Highway: 1958 Buick Special, Calgary

00 1958 Buick Special

A marquee car for Buick was its Special, considered an entry-level vehicle. This lovely 1958 model is the last year the Special was made. In the 1959 model year, the LeSabre was to replace the Special.

The chrome work on many cars from the 1950s is lovely, and this one certainly is not an exception.  Note the gas cap in the middle of the rear bumper.  The engine is a 364 cubic inch nailhead V8.  It has an automatic transmission. 

1958 Buick Special. Note the steel antennae by the wheels

1958 Buick Special. Note the steel antennae by the wheels

I was wondering what the function of these steel antennae behind the rear wheel was, and have to conclude that they were there to help with parallel parking.  If you hear metal scraping the curb, you’re too close.  A single antennae is also …

Read More

Tagged , , , ,

“Pic of the Week”, February 14, 2020: St Mary’s Parish, Banff

P1000327

A special place to visit when you’re exploring Banff is this pretty mountain church.

Catholic missionaries have had a presence in the Canadian Rockies for almost 200 years, including during the founding of the Banff townsite in the late 19th century.  A log cabin church was built in Banff in 1888 and it was consecrated as  ‘Our Lady of the Assumption’, but known by the locals as St Mary’s.

The church you see today was built in 1951 by Fr. Robert McGuinness, and it replaced the original building.  Fr McGuinness had attended seminary in Europe and loved the stone churches he saw there, inspiring him to build something of this type in his beloved town, Banff.   Fr. McGuinness had been a structural …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, February 14, 2020: St Mary’s Parish, Banff
.All Trips / Alberta / Car Culture / Central Canada / North America

Great Cars along the Highway: 1948 Ford Tudor Super Deluxe Sedan

00 1948 Ford Tudor Super Deluxe

This beautiful 1948 Ford was part of a car show in Calgary.  It’s powered by a 403 cu inch V8.  I remember as a boy, one of our family friends had a car of about this vintage and design, and I loved going for a ride in it. Couldn’t see much from the back seat as a kid, but it was still a fun ride.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

Tagged , , ,

“Pic of the Week”, December 6, 2019: Fresh Snow in the Mountains

P1150370

I love driving through the mountains.  Perhaps no season in the mountains is more memorable than winter.  The fresh snow on the Rocky Mountains in the Crowsnest Pass and soft light were quite lovely. 

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, December 6, 2019: Fresh Snow in the Mountains

“Pic of the Week”, July 19, 2019: Indian Trading Post, Banff

02 Indian Trading Post, Banff

One of the classic places to visit in the Banff townsite, within Banff National Park, is the Indian Trading Post.  It has been around since 1903 and was originally called the “Sign of the Goat Curio Shop”.  It’s one of those places that hasn’t changed much during the years.  

Situated on the bank of the Bow River, it is removed from the busy touristy part of Banff.  The exterior decorative items are interesting, but not as interesting as what you find when you enter the shop.

The walls of the shop are a museum of taxidermy, with a large variety of local species on display.  Initially dealing primarily in furs, the shop now sells mostly First Nations (Aboriginal) handicrafts.  These include items like …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, July 19, 2019: Indian Trading Post, Banff

“Pic of the Week”, June 28, 2019: Peyto Lake, Alberta

IMG_8829

One of the classic symbols of the Canadian Rockies is Peyto Lake, which is situated adjacent to Icefields Parkway, the road which connects Banff and Jasper.  Peyto Lake is a popular stop with travelers who enjoy taking in this panoramic view from Bow Summit.

The lake is glacier fed, the glacial silt giving it a lovely milky turquoise-green color.  It sits at 1860 m (6100 ft) above sea level.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance)

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, June 28, 2019: Peyto Lake, Alberta

“Pic of the Week”, May 10, 2019: Miners’ Union Hall, Canmore

IMG_6751

The first Europeans to live and work in the Rocky Mountains were hunters and miners.  Canada’s Rocky mountains are rich in minerals and the Canmore region — just south of Banff — has especially good coal deposits. 

The Canmore Miners’ Union Hall has been part of this community for more than a century and the building is one of the oldest in the town.  Completed in 1913, it was built to serve as the union office for local coal miners.  The building was one of the first in town to have electric lights.  The miners union helped improve working conditions, safety and miners’ wages.  

Coal mining has ceased in Alberta and the mining jobs have also disappeared, so there is no need for a …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, May 10, 2019: Miners’ Union Hall, Canmore