Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Canada Day 1: Ontario and Quebec

Our first day of travel went fairly well when you consider that we didn’t have any mechanical failures or wind or rain or bad roads or accidents, and only a few construction zones. But we did get into a traffic jam going through Montreal (I think it was due to an accident) that took time and patience to get through.

However, we could have been clearer on selecting a destination and, long story short, ended up at an expensive RV park east of Montreal. Live and learn. Tomorrow we’ll know for sure where we’re going to spend the night, not leaving it to chance to possibly stay in a Wal-Mart parking lot (with 85 degrees and high humidity, we would have had to run our generators for a/c).

The first leg of our trip leaving Alexandria Bay, NY included three bridges across the St. Lawrence River and part of the 1000 Islands that would have given Nick Russell the jitters.

(Note: I have reduced the size of all pictures to save on bandwidth because of limited Internet access. You can click on any picture to see a larger version.)




I was glad Don was driving, but then after lunch I got to drive through Montreal!

As we crossed the border, Don answered all the agent’s questions, the usual stuff, and all seemed well. Then she told him to pull under the canopy (what canopy?) and wait for an agent to come see us. He pulled over beside the building, and two agents came out, a man and a woman. They asked us to come out of the motorhome, and the man took Don around the other side of the coach while the woman talked to me. They asked lots of questions, mostly about guns, mace, guns, pepper spray, guns, bear spray, guns, etc. The woman found it hard to believe that we have no guns with us, and don’t even own any! Then we were instructed to open all the slide-outs in the motorhome, and go inside the building with our passports for a background check while they inspected the inside of the rig.

Everything checked out okay and they wished us a pleasant stay in their country, but we’re still puzzled over why we were selected for inspection. Maybe it was just our turn.

Meanwhile, Denny and Susie stopped at a gift shop and currency exchange about 1/2 mile up the road. They discovered that we could exchange U.S. money for Canadian without a fee, and we got 4% more Canadian ($100 U.S. = $104 Can). Such a deal!

Here’s another bridge over the river for Nick.


And a last glimpse at 1000 Islands.


Here’s where we’re spending the night. Nice, but pricey.


Too bad the pool isn’t open as the season hasn’t really started yet – Susie and I tried to go for a dip and we got up to our knees in the cold water and got kicked out! The man spoke only French and we spoke only English, but we got the message loud and clear. You’d think they would put up a sign when they don’t want you in the pool…

Miles covered today: 180, but we actually drove about 18 more than that when we failed to find the park we wanted, so the total was 198 miles.


  1. I think the last time we were in Canada (2013) the money exchange rate wasn't nearly so generous toward USD. Good for you!

  2. The ATM card we use doesn't charge foreign transaction rates so we just use it when we need it. I think I rode my motorcycle over that bridge in the 70's. Do you think it has changed since then. Tell Denny and Susie we got all the wind and sand out of the way for them. You are due good driving weather.

  3. Welcome to Canada. Sounds like the border agents really gave you a thorough check over for guns. I'm guessing they've learned from experience that a lot of US RVers do travel with firearms in their rigs.

  4. Hi guys and welcome to Canada. We've had the same treatment returning to Canada and while inconvenient, they are just doing their jobs. Enjoy your stay. Are you heading for the Maritimes? If so there is a great PAmerica park in Woodstock called Cozy Cabins.

    1. Thanks for the tip, Mark and Chris. Yes, we're planning to visit the Maritimes and will definitely check out that park.

    2. P.S. Just saw that the P.A. discount isn't valid July 1 - Sept 5. We might call and see if the management will approve it, maybe if they're not too busy...


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