Day 10 Valemount to Lucerne, Robson Park 88.8 km (863) Alt. 744 (8404) Pres. Altit.: 1131m: July 15, 2025
A day to remember! So many different impressions today! In the morning got up dry after a wet night, so the tent got packed in wet. Shortly after leaving camp at 6:30 it threatened to rain and wanting some coffee anyhow I dropped into a little "family restaurant" at 6:45 when it bagan to really pour down and I stayed on, and had a second breakfast consisting of, strangely enough, of toast with eggs and bacon PLUS potatoes (hash browns) ...
The tip for the waitress was definable when paying by credit card - interesting!
Then came the cycling part. After 25 km I reached Tete Jaune Cache - Tête Jaune Cache was named after a fur trader and trapper named Pierre Bostonais who guided for the Hudson's Bay Company in the 1800s. Bostonais was nicknamed Tete Jaune by the French voyageurs because of his blonde hair.
I passed the town to get onto the Yellowhead Highway leading into the Robson Park - and was I into some sights! For the first time on this trip I knew that I would not be going down the metres I climbed up any time soon. When I reached 1000m of altitude I stopped to celebrate by taking of a picture of my cycling computer, knowing very well that after Jasper that would seem to me like child's play, but so what - I'll take things one day at a time.
One of the first things to see on Hw 16 were the Rearguard Falls, obviously the highest end of salmon migration up the Fraser River - wow, a great view, see pictures below ...
The visitor centre at Mount Robson was nice but the lady there told me there would be NO services for about 80km until Jasper. My plan was to stop for the night at the far end of the Park at a campsite called "Lucerne" - speaking of which I met two guys at Lake Moose from Switzerland on a father-son tour the other way for some weeks. We exchanged information on the routes; they were going up north to Prince George and the West Coast .... A previous tour took them to South America together. The father had legs which seemed to burst through the riding pants ... maybe a pro having turned to cycle touring ...
My first sighting of Mount Robson was absolutely stunning! Unfortunately the mountain top was hidden in a white plume of clouds most of the time but I got a good impression. I've seen many a peak in the Alps, but the sheer size of this mountain was breathtaking! I hear climbing it is a real challenge even to die-hard mountaineers ...
At the visitor centre, which of course attracted all tourists (like me), had a wonderful exibition with a historical description of early climbing and the construction of the first road in this wilderness.
The road was surprisingly full of trucks but had very wide and safe shoulders so I did not feel threatened although the noise was occasionally quite bothersome going up and down between 1100 and 1200 m of altitude ...
The official BC campsites are astonishing in a way: Situated in the most wonderful places (just some, but not all of them, are crammed between the highway and a very noisy railroad track ;), they offer very little comfort for 20$ which I think is very steep indeed. The one at Lucerne had pit toilets, only a pump which cannot be activated with one hand so it is virtually impossible to fill a water bottle with it, no showers there, BUT bear-safe food boxes! Not to forget about 1 million mosquitoes per square meter. ... And you see many dead or dying pine trees, which are being destroyed by the mountain pine beetle, a natural catastrophe, which is affecting the logging business all over BC.
Well, tomorrow I'll be off to Jasper, 12 days were planned, it took me 11 .... good planning.
Cold! But yummy muesli breakfast
oops! Lucky I carry all my "fuel"
Nice stroll down to the falls
First glimpse of Mount Robson, hidden behind the clouds. See the road at the bottom? That gives you an idea of the SIZE of this mountain!
Entering Robson National Park with cloudy Mount Robson in the background
The rings of this tree tell a long story!
Cracking the first 1000m - up there to stay for a while
Relaxing just before I meet father and son from Switzerland
Bear safe boxes
See the ill trees?
The sap is the tree's line of defense against the mountain pine beetle which will eventually kill off the tree.