3 Days Around Hinton, Alberta

Days 43, 44, and 45 of the trip – Sunday through Tuesday, June 5-7, were quiet time with my son and his family in the Hinton area. We had learned in Kelowna how perfect RVs are for having quality family time together, and that was the plan for much of the Hinton-area stay.

On Saturday night, Cathy and I started off at the Hinton/Jasper KOA Campground, where the quality of everything except the wifi is at a very high level – including the view – for $50 per night. On our last visit we’d stayed at the KOA for our entire visit.

Hinton/Jasper KOA Campground
The KOA is very dog-friendly, and the kids had a lot of fun in the agility park – I think that I need to build some of this equipment for them when I get home 🙂

Dog agility park at the Hinton/Jasper KOA Campground
On Sunday, we got the rig ready, took it into town for its first wash in weeks, and did some shopping. Steve had his new trailer loaded at about the same time we finished, so we met in the Walmart parking lot and made the short drive to the Gregg Lake Campground in William A. Switzer Provincial Park. We got a pair of sites in the Fox Den circle that backed onto each other, with power, for $33 each per night.

Once we got set up, we walked the lovely 800-meter trail to Gregg Lake. My grandson, Brock, just turned two, but walks a good dog with no problem – and Gracie is a good dog until there’s a ball or stick to fetch 🙂

Trail to Gregg Lake
There are 3 public areas on Gregg Lake – the boat launch, a tiny gravel swimming beach where no dogs are allowed, and another tiny spot with a gravelled beach, which is where we went. Bella had never had warmish water to swim in before, and loved it. Fetching a ball got her into the water a few times, and then she started swimming just for fun. Steve and Rachel’s old dogs both love the water.

Playing with dogs at Gregg Lake
Tucker had never been swimming at all yet. We got him in the water, but not very deep except a couple of times, and he’s still not a big fan of the idea. And yes, he’s one funny-lookin’ dude when he’s wet! 🙂

Wet puppy
A friend of Steve and Rachel’s came over to our beach on a paddleboard with her kids, and the way the conversation went that evening, it was no surprise when a trip to town on Monday resulted in a kayak coming back with them. I took it for a spin, and it looks like a good investment in fun.

My son and grandson in a kayak
Another couple of the kids’ friends who have a dog and a pair of kayaks joined us on Monday, and it was a wonderful day.

Kayak and dog at Gregg Lake, Alberta

The Gregg Lake Campground is beautiful, and was perfect for what we wanted to do. The downsides to Gregg Lake are its horrible clay-mud bottom everywhere except the two tiny spots where gravel has been poured in, and the bugs. I have never been bitten so badly, or by such a variety of bugs – some tiny bites, some large bleeding wounds. I didn’t see most of the bugs, and don’t even know what they were. Days later, I still itch.

On Tuesday, Rachel had to go to work, and we all headed back to Hinton. Cathy and I stopped at the lovely little lake called Kelley’s Bathtub to walk the 1-km trail around it.

Kelley's Bathtub

In Hinton, Cathy and I parked the motorhome at the Freson Bros. grocery store, and then met the boys for dinner at Boston Pizza a couple of blocks away. Freson not only welcomes RV camping in their lot, they have free and fairly fast wifi that reaches the RV area. It’s where I’ve always done my shopping in Hinton anyway, but that sort of service certainly cements the idea. There’s also a Walmart that allows RV parking, so Hinton makes it very easy to stay longer.

We went over the the kids’ home, were the boys played and played and played 🙂

My grandson playing
…until Brock was so tired that he couldn’t even lift a dessert spoon!

My very tired grandson
Back at Freson Bros. just after 8:00 pm, with a storm moving in.

All hell broke loose that evening, with one of the wildest electrical storms I’ve ever seen. As it started moving away, it occurred to me that I should try to photograph it. Being in a hurry and not being very well set up, the photos I got aren’t much, but I now understand the concept in case I ever see another storm like that. Just set the shutter speed to as slow a speed as you can (this was a hand-held 1/4-second), and shoot continuously – maybe one photo in 40 will have lightning in it.

Lightning storm in Hinton
Looking at the weather forecast for the trip home, we were pretty disappointed to see a great deal of clouds and rain. Oh well…

On Wednesday, we’d start the drive home, with about 11 days to do the 2,300 km (1,429 mi) or so, depending on which detours we took.


3 Days Around Hinton, Alberta — 4 Comments

  1. Always really liked Hinton and your pictures are only confirming that!
    The storm doesn’t surprise me – last time I was out west I experienced the 5pm storm almost everyday. The nice part of electrical storms (that I noticed anyway) out west is they tend to be pretty fast moving. Out here in Ontario in the summer with the humidity, they tend to roll in with a bang and almost linger.
    It’s too bad about the rain on the drive home however. Trust me, I would rather be driving through that beautiful part of the country in the rain than havign to sit in an office here in Ottawa on a sunny day!!!!

  2. One of the neat little things that you do is share the family side of your adventures, the good and bad of travelling, re: the windshield, the deer, up and downsides of RV sites, and the fun and adventures of the day -like the kayaking, dog walks, etc.

    I always enjoy the travels most, but the family is the added topping on your days! And your obvious delight in ALL is refreshing.