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Trans Canadian Rail Adventure


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A 2,775 mile (about 4,466 kilometer) train journey across Canada provided a great opportunity to experience a wide variety of scenery, from forests laced with lakes and rivers, to wide open prairies to the majesty of the Canadian Rockies. The three day, four night journey across a portion of the second largest country in the world gave one time to see it at a leisurely pace while enjoying the view from the 360 degree observation deck or eating a meal in the dining car.

Reading my Canadian guidebook, I learned more about the creation of their railway. When Canada became a dominion in 1867, it was a group of eastern provinces with nothing between them and British Columbia except a small settlement where Winnipeg is today. Concerned that the Americans might try to take British Columbia since they had just bought Alaska, the Canadian government pushed for a railway to the Pacific. What followed was a tale, not unlike America’s railway construction, of politics, financial scandals, hardships and the deaths of many workers. However in November 1885 the railway was complete.

Although this was a short trip, we were able to spend time in Toronto before boarding the train and in Vancouver after we arrived. We also had a four hour break in Winnipeg, which gave us the chance to visit that city for a brief time. Overall the train journey provided us with a better understanding of Canada’s people, cities and scenery.

Day

Date

Location/Activities

1

25 June 2010

Fly from LA to Chicago; change planes to fly to Toronto, Canada

2

26 June 2010

Sightseeing in Toronto with many things closed because of the G20 Summit; St Lawrence Market, Distillery District, Union Station, walk around the waterfront, CN Tower, board train in the evening

3

27 June 2010

On train between Toronto and Winnipeg; travelling through forests, lakes and rivers of Ontario

4

28 June 2010

Reach Winnipeg in early morning for four hour stopover; continue on train between Winnipeg and Vancouver, travelling through the prairies of Manitoba and Saskatchewan

5

29 June 2010

Cross into Alberta and brief stop in Edmonton in early morning; continue, on the train between Winnipeg and Vancouver into the Canadian Rockies, stopping in Jasper in the afternoon

6

30 June 2010

Arrive in Vancouver, British Columbia in the early morning; visit Stanley Park, the Vancouver Aquarium and downtown waterfront during the day before flying back to Los Angeles in the evening