'R, I played baseball at school', said I. He replied with a grunt, with a clear lack of interest in my sporting achievements, but I pressed on. 'I can't remember if you run to the next square with the bat or if you drop the bat and run, but I did the opposite of what you are supposed to do. It may well be that you take the bat with you, as I recall being told off by the teacher for flinging the baseball bat and it nearly hitting someone. I did get to the next square before being caught out though, with bat or without.' In a moment of clear logic, you must leave the bat behind because you no longer need it once you have left home base, or do you? I am sure many people are now rolling their eyes at my lack of baseball knowledge but just remembering the term home base is a significant achievement for me.
I was going to rant about Canada railways, but I have a cold undoubtedly caught on the flight home and I don't have the concentration levels at the moment. Huge amounts of freight are moved slowly across Canada by freight trains, some over a kilometre long. Here is one with double stacked containers.
Looks like this was on the RM train. Cute.
Bush fires are a problem in the forests of Canada. With such a short growing period, forests take years to recover. Also with the weather being warmer than it used to be, it is in some years not cold enough to kill off the pine beetles, which can quickly kill a tree. Nothing to do with the greenhouse effect or global warming, of course. Burn more coal peeps, as our Prime Minister advocates.
How many carriages long was the RM? Maybe eight or ten. I think we had lost the rear engine at this point, left behind at Kamloops, leaving only the two front engines and a generator car.
Train tracks and train wheels don't last forever, as you can see from this ground off metal.
Before I could ask about the gas storage tanks I noticed every so often along the line, someone else did. The gas fires heaters to stop points in the track from freezing up in winter.
I think this was the longest wait we had in a siding while waiting for this freight train to pass. While freight trains give way to people trains, some freight trains are too long for the existing sidings and so people must give way to freight. Why there is one track will be explained in my future rant.
A geyser?, I asked. No, aeration of water at a fish farm.
Looking a bit greener and the vegetation a bit thicker.
Just a passing shower.
The scenery is becoming quite spectacular. These may well be Pyramid Falls.
Probably the Thompson River.
We have left the province of British Columbia and are now in Alberta. There was a time change and my devices were as confused as I was. My old Samsung phone dealt best with any time change but it always took a little time.
Upon reaching Jasper rail yards, here is one of those delaying freight trains. We are now within a national park and everything was in both French and English. There are restrictions about who can live here. Retirees with a connection, fine. Those with a job, even the working poor, fine. Business people, no probs. Unemployed lay abouts, no.
As we left the train, it was my first opportunity to get to the front of the train to take a photo. It was around 7.30pm by this stage. It was explained to us by our tour guide that he does not give arrival times when on the train as it can vary by a couple of hours, depending how much time is spent at sidings. Although the train reached 80 plus km/h just outside Vancouver, mostly it crawled along. We checked in to the Chateau Jasper and dined within the hotel as it was a bit of a walk to the town. We were served by a very handsome and friendly Indian waiter lad who was studying nearby. I expect R pressed the 20% tip button on the card machine. There are some good things to see from the base of Jasper, as you will see tomorrow.
I'll leave you with this short song by a satirical Canadian group called The Arrogant Worms. We were to see many rocks and many trees over the next few days, and water.