As I got closer to Smithers on the hilly roads, and rode along the Bulkley river, I could see the valley opening up and forests of aspen and fir giving way to ranches and rolling farmlands, with grazing cows and horses. It was a pretty sight, though very different to the sights of dense forests and bears on the Cassiar! I was struck by the contrast in the landscapes just a hundred kms away from the Junction. Bu t of course, what always stood there were the glorious mountain ranges and the glaciers! They were absolutely stunning.
At Smithers I met Wolfgang and Alexandra, the German cyclists again, and we camped at the Municipal Riverside campground, sharing the cost of the site. It was a lovely campground by the Bulkley river with hot showers, firewood, and good wifi. The cost was 21 CAD.
Smithers is a pretty town and I spent 3 days there and spent 2 nights in a motel as I really needed to tend to my butt sores.
I got the bikes spokes repaired at McBikes and strolled around the towns main street, public library and had a couple of meals at the Mexican cafe at the railway station.
It was already the end of August and riding to Prince George beyond, meant I would get to the Rockies only in the first week of September. With the weather changing fast, getting colder and wetter, I thought it more prudent to take the VIA rail connection from Smithers to McBride and ride thereon to Mount Robson and Jasper and spend more time exploring the Rockies. Though I was not sure at the time, it turned out to be a very good decision as the weather turned foul soon after.
Elevation gain: 2100 ft