Being Adventerous

So time for dinner in Banff; The choice is huge, with most cultures and tastes catered for.

I decided to go Japanese at the Suginoya Restaurant on Banff Avenue…

Clare is not a huge Sushi fan, so not a choice we usually make at home.

I think I have ordered, the question is, what have I ordered?!

The menus were all in Japanese, so order was done by pointing at pictures… They looked pretty, just hope they taste good too!

The Sapporo is cold and tasty, so so far so good.

This photo of Suginoya Restaurant is courtesy of TripAdvisor
Wish me luck!

Main course looks great – More luck than judgement on my part I think.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone 4

It was all going so well

Today started really well – I decided to explore some more of ‘K-Country’ before heading off to my next location, Banff.

Once in Banff I decided to ride the Banff Gondola – the easy way to get to the top of Sulphur Mountain:

Sulphar Walkway Cont Mapped

Once there, as expected, the view is truly breathtaking.

D30 6047 HDR

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Banff Ave,Banff,Canada

What a day!

Today I realised what Landscape photography is all about – A wide angle lens and polarising filter and away you go.

I think the scenery helps though – I think anyone would struggle to take a bad shot when you are presented with a view link this:

I started my day with a walk around the Village Rim Trail, a short(ish!) stroll around Kananaskis Village centre – Within 200 yards I came face to face with a fantastic visa:


Just stunning…

I then moved on to walk the Trolls Falls trail – If one thing has struck me more than anything so far, it is the quiet – I only saw two other people along the whole route, and (bizarrely) they were ‘Bow Hunting Elk’. You couldn’t make this stuff up.

The Trolls Falls trek was well worth the effort – It is about 1.3KM each way from the road, but you are greeted at the end with a fantastic wall of water: Took loads of shots as expected, a select few are on my Flickr Site

Canada so far is simply breath-taking, the people are friendly, and the roads totally deserted:

Can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!

Discovering Calgary

Spent my first full day in Canada today – It started out a little damp, but I was determined not to waste anytime, so jumped on the Tram to Calgary Zoo.

I know it is the end of the season, and it wasn’t the best weather, but I was surprised at how empty the park was.

Perfect for me to play around with the camera and see what I could do;

This was handheld, through glass:


And this was through wire bars:


I then moved on to Calgary Tower for a view of the city. I am not a ‘heights’ person at all, but I do like the view they allow you – Would you believe that I has left my wide angle zoom in the car… Amateur

and I even got a little brave in the name of my art, standing on the glass floor looking down onto Calgary below

My afternoon was spent driving from Calgary to my next location ‘Kananaskis’ (Cana-Skis to us in the UK!)… Finally getting my first view of the Rockies.

Can’t wait to go and explore them over the next few days – But until then, I am happy to make do with the stunning Barrier Lake:


Settled into Delta Lodge for the next two days – Really lovely room in a perfect location.

Off to charge some batteries.

That’s better

After the damp start in Calgary yesterday, today I woke up to this view from my room at Delta Lodge, Kananaskis:


The sun is steaming through the trees, and the air is lovely and crisp… Batteries charged, time to go and explore the Rockies.


My ‘Wheels’

Finally arrived at Calgary Airport five minutes ahead of schedule.

A very small airport, that was totally deserted – Perfect for a quick pass through immigration, or so I thought…

Canadian officials thought it very odd that I was travelling alone, not meeting anyone, and had no family here… I am sure I am not the first.

They were happy once I explained that I was taking photos for personal use, and not on an assignment, so I went on my way.

I collected the excellent GyPSy Guide GPS system (more on this in a couple of days when I have really put it through it’s paces), and went to collect my rental car for this part of the trip.

In true US/Canadian style, I was given a huge ‘Bus’ of a car;


A 2010 Chevrolet Malibu – Big V6 automatic… That doesn’t really go around corners very well!

It also has a very fetching ‘Beige’ interior – mmmm.


After lots of swearing and head scratching I eventually found my first hotel ‘Hotel Sandman’ in downtown Calgary – To be fair to my navigation skills, building a tram link along the road that the Satnav was telling me I needed to go wasn’t really me fault!

It is now 06:20 Calgary time – I have been awake since 04:00, but can’t wait to go and explore.

OSX 10.6 at the zoo

Such a shame I can’t do anymore to remove the cage in the background, but I am still pretty pleased to capture a Snow Leopard.

Taken at Calgary Zoo, Alberta, CA.

Wait and Weight

All started well – Clare and I left in plenty of time to allow for the Monday morning ‘fun’ on both the A421 and the M1, traffic was fine.

We then got a text about 10 miles or so outside of LHR from the excellent to tell us that the outward flight to Calgary had been delayed by five hours, and wouldn’t leave until 18:15, arriving at 20:30 (Canadian time).

Fortunately AirCanada fly three times a day from Heathrow, and managed to swap my ticket to the 16:15 flight without charge… Cool.

I had to wait an hour or so before I could check in my luggage though, but free WiFi at Starbucks meant that that wasn’t the end of the world.

It turns out that my case was over weight (you try being a photographer going to Canada for the first time and try to get down to 22kg!) – I had weighed it at home, but obviously balancing a case on bathroom scales isn’t accurate enough!

Again, the AirCanada staff were excellent and allowed me two hand luggage bags, which dropped my main case enough to allow it to be checked in without any additional charge.

Bizarrely, Westjet (my internal flight operator) allows more weight, so I will have no problems there next week.

Waiting by the gate now – Just been informed that all seats onboard have power sockets that work with the iPad without using an adapter… Bonus.

Catch you all on the other side.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:United Kingdom

Time to get packing

So, Canada is just around the corner now:

I think I am all set for what I am doing once I arrive – I now just need to get everything packed.

I am pretty sure I will be able to find WiFi at least once every other day, so Blogging should be fine.

I am planning to use the iPad wherever possible to Blog from – additional snippets may be added from the iPhone (both iOS device are running BlogPress).

I may also post to twitter occassionally: I will use the #WestyCA hash tag on the relevant posts.

I am also taking the Macbook Pro with me; predominantly for photo back-up purposes, but also to process an HDR images that I take along the route.

The Macbook Pro is running Mars Edit in case I feel like doing something slightly more ambitious with the post.

Now time to go and find that suitcase…

My full itinerary can be seen here:

Canada Plans

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad