Tuesday 24 May 2016

Wonderful Waterton

I had a wonderful and relaxing time down at Waterton Lakes National Park. I will admit that I did not do any of the hiking that I had planned to. 

The main reason was that the mountains were socked in with mist and fog and part of the reason for hiking up a mountain is to be rewarded with a wonderful vista. 

As far as weather goes it did rain or sprinkle pretty much the whole time that I was there. As is tradition, it did snow this weekend and yes where I was, and yes on the first evening, putting an ominous tone to the start of this long-awaited long weekend.

All in all I was able to make the round trip to and from Waterton Lakes with only using ¾ of a tank of gas. I accomplished this by doing 90 KPH on the way back. I was a bit faster on the way down as I wanted to beat the darkness. 

After getting to the campsite and parking I did what I usually do, first locate and make the connections (Water, Sewer, and Power). This way I can easily move and adjust the trailer in case I need to in order to make sure that my connections (Hose, power cord, etc) can reach.

That was when things got interesting. 

You see, I had paid to dump the night before, so I could flush and “wash” the black water tank. How I did this was to first dump it completely, then I poured a bit of soap down there, in my case it was dish soap. I probably should have used a good household cleaner. After that, I poured a couple of gallons of fresh water down the toilet. 

The reason for all this was to have the tank about half or a little less than half full of clean and soapy water for that drive down to Waterton Lakes. The natural action of the bouncy drive would make that water sloshed around and in so doing “wash” the insides of the tank. 

I wanted to do this as for as long as I have had Wanda her gauge on how full the black water tank is has been woefully inaccurate, as in it always reads “Full” well, after that trick, which I will repeat again sometime, it now reads “half full.” So, it is progress.

This meant that I needed to dump Wanda right away, but after getting setup, I noticed the hookups were in an odd place. 

When I looked around to find where the sewer connection was, I found it in the stupidest place imaginable. 

Yep, that’s right, it was under Wanda’s Propane Tank. As in the sewer connection was up front in the middle of the parking spot and not in the back near the power and water, where these hookups are always clustered. 

I decided to turn around and see if that helped . . . nope, connection was in the same place. This is where I kicked myself for not doing one thing that I know that I should have. 

I have made sure to have at least 50 feet of power and water connection, just in case the hookups are in an odd place. With the power, I bought a proper extension cord, and have had to use it. I recently bought a 50 foot water hose, as in the past I have needed a bit of extra hose. 

The one thing that I haven’t done is to buy a second sewer hose, so as to have 50 feet of sewer connection. If I had done this, this wouldn’t have been a problem and I could have hooked the sewer connection up. 

What other campers were doing were parking their trailers up front and disconnecting. Since I don’t like to drive where I camp, I don’t disconnect if at all possible.

In the end I did the only thing I could do, pull forward so my truck was sticking out into the road, and dumped my tanks. I made sure to flush the tanks too. 

What you do is hookup the water hose up to the “Tank Flush” connection and turn the water on. Make sure that your dump valves are open. I have a straight, clear bit of tube that I connect up to the dump valve, I can see what is flowing out. 

Usually this lets me see exactly when the tanks are completely empty, but this time it let me see the colour of the water coming out, as in I kept flushing until the water coming out was clear and not brown. 

After that, I disconnected the sewer pipe, put it away and then backed up into place. Little old me doesn’t generate enough waste water to necessitate dumping after a few days. So, I repeated this process Monday morning, making sure to fill my fresh water tank and my two 5 gallon water jugs. 

The first night it was misty and socked in but that didn’t bother me, I made sure to go for a walk into town on Saturday morning. 

It is a quiet and quaint little town and despite the canopy shown here, there are many lovely local shops and businesses along this street.

My excuse for going for the walk was to get two things, one was a fridge magnet (for my range hood) and the other was a sticker for the back of Wanda.

I buy a sticker from the interesting places that I have driven with Wanda to and slap it on the back, like people used to do with their luggage in years gone by.

Sunday morning I was treated by a heard of deer walking through camp.

My guess is that they were gathering their strength for an odd and brutal form of boxing that the locals seem to like to participate in.

Finally, here are a collection of lovely shots that I took while down there. 

I plan to go down again in warmer weather so I can at least go for one hike in the area. All in all it was a good trip and not as far as I had first thought, so it is definitely some place that I can go again. 

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