Sunday, August 21, 2016

Summer Adventure Tour - Yorkton SK - Lloydminster AB

We're arrived in Alberta!  Just.  We're in Lloydminster for the night, on the Alberta side of 50th Ave, which happens to also be the Sask/Alta border.

Had beautiful views of the North Saskatchewan River for much of the day, passed over it a couple times.  Town names are so interesting - we passed by both Kandahar and Highgate, Mozart and Foam Lake.  There is a quilt store in Foam Lake - Quiltworks Studio, but it was closed on this Sunday.

So. Much. Canola.  Most still standing but very green.  Some swathed.  Some combines running in the wheat.  Seems to be very late for wheat or canola harvest, even for this far north?  

Along the route today, we continued to see thousands and thousands of white butterflies - we think they're cabbage butterflies.  They seem to like the flooded sloughs.  The trucks have huge collections of these butterflies plastered on their rads.  We have hundreds of gut spots on our bikes from these butterflies unfortunate endings when they fly into our path.  

Have to find a car wash!  Covered in cabbage butterfly guts, which bees apparently find delicious.
Cabbage butterfly

Speaking of bees, we drove by alfalfa fields dotted with these fun little blue huts.  They looked a bit like giant beehives.  Turns out, that's exactly what they are!  Polidomes for the Leafcutter Bees, at work pollinating the alfalfa fields.  Apparently you need one of these shelters for every four or five acres.  Details here ...  
Bee shelters dotting the alfalfa field
All across our route through Manitoba and Saskatchewan, we've found lots of sloughs, seemingly higher than usual - over fenceposts.  These are fine spots for waterfowl - and they are full of ducks and geese.

Slough is such a funny word.  Pronounced "slew" when it describes these swampy areas, but does not rhyme with tough or rough or cough or though.  Or when 'slough' is describing what happens when a snake sheds his skin, then it does rhyme with rough.  Oh, English.

The other kinda quilty find today, was just as we were arriving at our hotel for the night, in Lloydminster - "Sew In Tune".   Also closed, still being Sunday.  They sell sewing machines and musical instruments.  What a terrific combination!  

We often stay at Best Western hotels, and this one is a gem!  A new property, they also upgraded us (they have 4 floors and are not full, and we have tons of loyalty points) - we have a fireplace in the sitting area and a Jacuzzi tub in the bedroom.  And a steam shower.  And a kitchenette.  It is really, really nice! 
Today's route - Yorkton SK - Lloydminster AB

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