After a week travelling north, up Vancouver Island, we have turned our faces to the east. We thought that the trip up the island would be a good chance to get our legs in shape before heading into the Rockies. So far, with soaring mountains on either side of us, we have found nothing to rival the island’s Sayward Hill with its kilometers of up, painful up.
There were a few hills outside of Prince Rupert, one even big enough to have a name, Rainbow Summit. After that hill the road parallels the Skeena River and, for nearly 100 kilometers, is virtually flat with a few big hills as the road diverts around areas of swamp or rocky outcrops. The highway follows the railroad track sometimes with no more than the shoulder of the road separating the two.
From the bank of the river the mountains soar. These are not the tree covered mounds of Vancouver Island, but rather snow topped peaks with snow melt hurtling down their sides to form roaring rivers running under the road. The Skeena is high, busting its banks, flooding roadside parks, and at one point running higher than the road, held back by the railroad embankment.
Yesterday, we were told by our B&B host that the piece of road we have travelled over the past two days is rated by tour companies at five diamonds, one of the most spectacular in the world. The combination of flowing water and towering mountains makes it special.
We follow the river for another 135 kilometers. There is more to see than the mind can comprehend.
I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.