Team name: Team Aloha
Participants: Lana, Tyler, Tricia
2018 Road trip details:
Not new to the road trip game, Team Aloha made their way through Northern California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Canada to spend a few days exploring Jasper and Banff National Parks, making pit stops along the way to explore some lakes, waterfalls, and other national parks. "We chose this route because we love being outdoors, surrounded by forest, and having the freedom to explore the road less travelled. Adventure is calling!
Can't leave home without:
Lana: headphones, a camera, and home-brewed iced tea
Tricia: backpack, and a notebook & pen
Tyler: camera, snacks, and good tunes
Favorite tune to listen to on the open road:
Lana: Take It Easy by The Eagles
Tricia: 101 by Walla
Tyler: Santeria by Sublime
Signature/go-to camp food:
Lana: loaded baked potatoes and soup soup soup
Tricia: any roasted veggies cooked over an open flame
Tyler: chili and s'mores. nom
"Best known for"/"claim to fame"/"trip role":
Lana: pirate-like navigational skills, camp chef, provides the tunes, photographer/videographer/droner
Tricia: the "ultimate driving machine", planner/organizer, loves to keeps the fire going, expert wood-gatherer
Tyler: love of food (especially cooked over a fire), 2 deployments as a combat medic, trip medic/photographer/videographer
A perfect trip would include these three items:
Lana: epic views, sing-alongs around the campfire with good friends, milky way skies at night
Tricia: good food & company, perfect surf, and amazing sunrises
Tyler: great conversation, daredevil activities, and perfect weather
Recreate their trip
Passports, check. Nature, check. Awesome friends, dogs and family, check. Food, water, gas, check. Cameras, drones, batteries, check! As we began the planning for our Endless Adventure summer road trip, we started backwards and started planning from the point of where we wanted to end up which was Banff and Jasper in Canada. Knowing that we were going to be crossing country borders and would be camping outside of our comfort zone, we first researched the laws, rules and regulations that we would need to abide by. The biggest find was all the fire bans throughout the road trip and how we would need to alter our cooking, keeping warm and evening activities.
We started mapping our journey out through google maps, seeing what mileage would be manageable each day and what points of interest would be along each daily drive. To make the journey safely, we downloaded offline google maps of the areas we were traveling to, we purchased a few paper maps and a backcountry map book of Alberta and British Columbia.
On our first day of travel we drove from Pacifica, CA to Crater Lake National Park Oregon to catch the sunset. We drove up the 5 through the Redding fires, getting extremely lucky that about an hour behind us the freeway was shut down due to the fires. After watching an amazing sunset we headed to our campsite that we had pre-booked online at Collier Memorial State Park.
Our friend Jonathan was not able to make his flight earlier in the day to begin the journey with us. He is an ER Doctor and had to finish delivering triplets, no big deal. Luckily he was able to fly into a nearby airport at 11 p.m. and uber an hour and half to the campsite, even more lucky is that there was someone crazy enough to drive him to us. We all were exhausted from the first day on the road and all had our first night in our Tepui tents, boy were these things amazing and comfortable.
It was the first time we had to figure out how to put the Tepui tents away and we found that it took only about 15 minutes to pack them back up into their covers and get back on the road. We sped through Washington straight onto Idaho where we knew we’d be getting in pretty late and had reserved a Hipcamp. Our Hipcamp hosts were awesome, we spent some time chatting with them and they convinced us to take a detour through Glacier National Park the next day. We agreed as a team to take the 3 hour detour, all with the same reasoning, “when would we ever be this close to Glacier National Park again?”
We woke up early and headed toward Glacier National Park. We were able to utilize our annual national park pass for entrance for one vehicle and used Tyler’s military status to get our second vehicle in without paying. We took our time and drove on Sun Road and stopped to have lunch at one of the viewing points. During lunch we took out our phones and map books to figure out where we would stay the night. Lana found a backcountry campsite called Paddy’s Flat, which was next to a river in Alberta, Canada.
We were FINALLY in Canada. Shortly after we passed the border, we came across a field of yellow flowers where we decided to take a few pictures and drone shots. We needed to restock our food and drinks and found a grocery store nearby. The Yeti cooler kept our ice for days at a time, that made it easier to extend our time without shopping. We headed to the campsite and got setup. By this point we were 3 nights into using our Tepui tents and had gotten pretty good at assembling them within 10 minutes, rain fly rods and all. It was nice to sit around and relax for the evening and get giddy about the adventure planned for the next day, white water rafting in Golden, BC.
During the initial planning, we knew white water rafting was a MUST for the four of us. This was the only activity in Canada that we had pre-planned for and purchased tickets online through Wild Water Adventures. We rafted down the kicking horse river, which was scenic, majestic and powerful from all the glacial melt. Rafting was a full day activity and we were in need of some beers, we made a pit stop at Whitetooth Brewery before dinner in Golden, BC. As comfy as our Tepui tents were, we decided to get a hotel room so that we could all take showers, we stunk.
We spent the next two days exploring Banff National Park. We stopped at Peyto Lake, Bow Summit, drove the Icefield Road, stopped to see the Athabasca Glacier, Lake Louise, Moraine Lake, and Sunwapta Falls. We encountered our first bad weather night and it downpoured on us. We are happy to report that the Tepui tents kept us dry and safe from the torrential lightning, rain and thunder. Just a note to anyone visiting Moraine Lake, there is very limited parking and the road to get in is usually blocked off unless you get lucky or get a VERY early start.
It was day 7 and we were still just as enthusiastic as we were when we started this trip. We started the day visiting Maligne Canyon, where we were just taken back by the sheer beauty of what the power of water had carved into the canyon. After Maligne Canyon we sped over to Maligne Lake where we took a guided boat tour to Spirit Island, where it poured all over us. When we arrived at our campsite at Whistlers Campground, the rain had passed and we had a nice dry evening eating one of Lana’s many amazing dinners.
Prior to hitting the road, we mountain biked around the adjacent river and the surrounding area. Canada was nothing short of amazing, we were smitten. It was bitter sweet knowing that we were starting the drive back to California. We drove from Jasper down to Wells Grey Provincial Park and made a pit stop at Spahats Waterfall, one of the many waterfalls in Wells Grey. After the sightseeing, we enjoyed our afternoon hanging out paddleboarding and picnicking around Dutch Lake in Clear Water. We were in need of showers again and needed to plan the last few days of the road trip out and decided to get room at Watauga Cabins.
We did some quick research and found a place to stay the next night. We were up early and got back on the road as we had hundreds of miles ahead of us. Sun Top Lookout was our destination, as the view of Mt. Rainier was what we wanted to witness with our own eyes. Near the lookout there were forest roads where we decided to setup camp. We knew that we had to head back towards Oregon the next morning, but had no plans as where we were staying again. We hit the road and as soon as we got some reception, Lana found us our last campsite for the road trip at Bogus Creek in Umpqua National Forest.
It was our last night on the road and we decided to time ourselves putting up the Tepui tents, by this point, I would consider us Pro’s at Tepui setup and packing up. We could set up two tents in under 6 minutes. We cooked the remainder of our food and drank the last of our whiskey and wine. We sat under our string lights for the last night and reminisced on the past nine days, we felt so grateful for the trip we had experienced.
As the sun came over the trees this last morning, we packed up the Jeep and Tacoma for the last leg home. We drove from Umpqua National Forest back to Pacifica, California. Our Tepui Endless Adventure had come to an end, but really we felt that our real adventure had just begun. The trip was life changing for all four of us, having a deeper appreciation to the outdoors and nature and the freedom that comes with road trips. Some advice from our team - keep trucking, keep exploring, and you’re never lost as long as you have gas.
Thank you to Tepui and our other sponsors, Yeti and Topo Designs, for the opportunity to share this journey with everyone.
Adventure On, Team Aloha