Monday, May 12, 2014

Memory Monday - West Trip

Growing up, I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to travel a lot. We didn't go anywhere exotic, but we drove all over the country and I never thought twice about it. The reason we were able to do this was because my Dad was retired, my Mom was a homemaker and us kids were all homeschooled. For the extra push needed to traipse about the countryside, my Dad was a judge at plowing matches so we often followed him to different destinations.

In 2002, there was a Canadian plowing match in British Columbia so we planned a trip west across Canada.

Lake Superior, Ontario
It started it out as just my parents, Cora and myself but that was only for the first week or so of our vacation. We left our home in Quebec the middle of April in order to make it to Saskatchewan for my sister Jackie's graduation from Bible school.

Upon picking up Jackie, we continued on, stopping in at friends and family's houses along the way. We camped the whole time, in a tiny little trailer that was being pulled behind our van.

Dinosaur Provincial Park, Alberta
Except we didn't all fit in the trailer to sleep, so Jackie was lucky and got the backseat of the van for the remaining 6 weeks of our trip. It was tight quarters, but cozy on the cold April nights. At least for those of us in the trailer with a heater.

Dry Island Buffalo Jump Provincial Park, Alberta
We saw many beautiful sights and made many stops to take pictures during our long drive.

The Canadian Rockies, Alberta
Although I still think my favourite time was spent on Vancouver Island, along the beaches. The Pacific Ocean is beautiful and we were lucky enough to have a prime camp site along the beach.

The small trailer behind us is ours at our campsite
While the weather wasn't always warm (it was April and May after all), we had a wonderful time on the trip and at all of our stops.

One Mile Beach, British Columbia
It was a very long trip though, being seven weeks in total. Imagine seven weeks in a tiny trailer with your family and I think you'll understand.

Cathedral Grove, British Columbia
Despite the close quarters, it was a trip of a lifetime and I'm so glad that my parents took the initiative to show their children different parts of the country. Packing up the van and trailer and taking off for a trip was a common occurrence when I was younger.

Long Beach, Vancouver Island, British Columbia
I got to see a lot of things other kids my age hadn't seen yet and I learned to appreciate nature and beauty at a young age. I will always remember this trip west and I will look back at it with fond memories.

One of our last nights camping
One day, I would love to take Dan on a road trip across Canada and show him many of the sights that are now fading in my memory. I think it's something that everyone should do at least once, if not more, in their lifetime.


Memory Monday Mini Series

Week 1: Birthdays
Week 2: Little Sisters
Week 3: Wedding Dresses
Week 4: Hard Work
Week 5: West Trip


  1. That is so awesome! My dad always wanted to do a similar trip but he wanted to wait until my brother had his license so he wouldnt have to do all the driving. But then by that age my brother started working to save money for school and I followed soon after and we were never able to make it work!

    Maybe one day my brother and I will make it happen for dad! But we will need a lot bigger camper now :)

  2. Love this! Trips with my family were the best part of growing up!

  3. Sounds so familiar. We took our kids across Canada (3 times west and twice east), in a small tent trailer, starting by going to Expo '86. I was lucky and could combine going to conferences with vacation. I think it was the single best thing we ever did for our kids, and you're right, everyone should do it!

  4. Casey - You should totally plan to do this trip with your dad and brother, and soon! It's amazing and can be done in way less than 7 weeks. :P

    Lee - I agree, family trips are some of the best memories of my childhood.

    Cora - I knew you would. :D

    Furry Gnome - My parents took the family west 3 times too, but I only made it into two of those vacations. And we've been east many times as well. I'm glad you were able to mix work and vacation together and form those memories with your kids.

  5. Love walking down memory lane with you. :) It really wasn't too terribly cold in the van. Too bad I didn't make it into more pictures :P

  6. Jackie - I'm glad you didn't freeze too bad in the van. And sorry there wasn't more pictures of you, I'll try and do better in the future. :P