Sunday, May 15, 2011

Radium Hot Springs

We pretty much wore ourselves out yesterday afternoon trying to get all the chores done.  We were more than ready for bed and actually headed in that direction earlier than usual.

This morning we were moving a little slower than normal, but are still finishing up a few last minute things before departure time.  Gene has been emptying and flushing tanks--not a hard job, but takes some time.  After my shower, I noticed a little water pooling on the floor.  It seems one of the screws holding the shower enclosure to the base was leaking.  Thank goodness it was an easy fix.

While Gene was still enjoying the excitement of finding an easy to repair leak, he started checking every nook and cranny under the shower for dryness.  To his disappointment, he found a small puddle.  So far he has been unable to determine the source of the leak.

Columbia Lake

Our drive today along Highway 93/95 was scenic, but traffic was heavy making it a little more stressful than we would have liked.  We pulled over at a rest area for lunch.  To stretch our legs, we walked up the hill to the picnic area and were rewarded with a commanding view of Columbia Lake.

We’re parked at Dry Gulch Provincial Park at the southern end of Kootenay National Park.  Dry Gulch is very typical of American forest service parks.  The sites are spacious, there are lots of trees, and there are no hook-ups.  It is very peaceful and we only have one other camper with us besides the camp host.  The park has 25 sites, two-thirds of which are still closed.  Of the nine sites in the front of the park; we only found three that we could get into easily.  We enjoy the solitude so we’re happy.

Radium is the gateway community at the southern entrance to Kootenay National Park.  It’s a small town of about 1,000 people and a resident population of about 150 Rocky Mountain big horn sheep.  The sheep just wander around on the side of the road, on the sidewalks, in parking lots and graze in yards.  I guess that works out great in the summer; you don’t have to mow so much.

One of Radium resident big horn sheep
The town doesn’t have much to offer--a few shops, a small grocery, a coffee shop and a candy store is about it other than a half dozen hotels.  Residents and guests alike go to Invermere if they want anything.  We’ll take advantage of the free WiFi at the coffee shop to do our internet stuff.

Radium Hot Springs Lodge
Radium Hot Springs is located inside the National Park.  The hot springs get their name from traces of radon in the water.  It’s perfectly safe, they say, and people come to soak in the pools. There are two pools--one hot, one cool.  The cool pool is really like a swimming pool complete with a life guard.  The hot pool whose water comes from the spring is shallow and made for soaking.  The temperature is around 104 degrees.

Radium Hot Springs cool pool

Also at Radium Hot Springs is a lodge, a gift shop, and a small snack bar.

Our plan is to stay at Dry Gulch for two nights.  Tomorrow we’ll take our picnic lunch and drive through Kooteney.  There is only one road in the park and it goes from Radium to Banff National Park, a distance of about 50 miles.  Some say the Kootenay Rockies are the best.  It should be a nice drive.

GAS REPORT: We got gas this morning at the Fort Steele RV Park.  We paid 5.06/gal and that was the lowest price we saw all day.  Diesel was a little cheaper at 4.96/gal.

CRITTER COUNT:  5 mule deer and many, many sheep.

That’s all for today.  Thanks for tagging along.

No comments:

Post a Comment