“There and Back Again” ~ A Human’s Tale

5 Provinces, 11 States, 6 weeks and a butt load of kilometres = My July

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Hello my friends!

Yikes, It has been quite a while since I have written a post. Where have I been you ask? Hiding away at teachers’ college since September, which as you may have noticed was when I last posted. The past year was much busier than I was expecting, and unfortunately my blog had to take a back seat to assignments, practicum placements, lesson planning and marking. The good news is I actually LOVE teaching, so I am very glad that I took the leap and went back to school. This meant that I also had to take a break from travelling. As I am typing this, I just realized that have not stepped more than 100km away from my house in Toronto this year – HOLY SMOKES THAT IS A SCARY THOUGHT!…

…Okay, so now that I have let that thought sink in, made myself a cup of ginger tea and am snacking on a bowl of strawberries, let me continue…

Don’t get me wrong, I am so thankful for the amazing opportunities I have had over the last few years to explore the world,  but as any traveller knows, it’s just never enough. My soul has been craving an adventure all year and as my schooling comes to an end, a plan has come about. A plan that electrifies me with energy – a North American road trip! Driving across Canada has been on my bucket list for quite some time, and I am UBER excited that this is the year I get to cross it off.

Shan On Route is back in action and I look forward to sharing my story with you!


Phase 1: Drive from Toronto to Vancouver with my mother Christine (Toronto, ON – Manitoulin Island, ON – Lake Superior Provincial Park, ON – Thunder Bay, ON – Kenora, ON – Brandon, MB – Moose Jaw, SK – Banff, AB – Jasper, AB – Lake Louise, AB – Kelowna, BC – Vancouver, BC)

Phase 2: Spend two weeks in Vancouver & the surrounding area (Cultus Lake Provincial Park – Whistler -Port Alberni – Tofino – Victoria)

Phase 3: Drive from Seattle to  Toronto with my girlfriend Emily  (Seattle, WA – Olympic National Park, WA – Portland, OR  – Coeur D’Alene National Park, ID – Glacier National Park, MT – Yellowstone National Park, WY – Mount Rushmore, SD – Badlands National Park, SD – Chicago, IL – Detroit, MI – Toronto, ON)

What are 5 things that I am really excited about?

1) An official Mother Daughter trip: This will be the first time my mom and I will be travelling sans dad and bro.

2)  Vancouver in the summer: This will be my 4th visit to Vancouver, but all of my previous trips have been in the rather rainy late fall and winter. Those sunny, breezy, west coast beaches are calling my name!  Specifically, I have been dying to do the Grouse Grind, but it has always been closed due to snow on the trails when I have visited previously. I am very excited that I can finally do it this time!

3) Sushi in Vancouver: Need I say more? Mmmmmm…

4) National Parks: Have you googled (images) Olympic National Park? Do it.

5) Spending time with family and friends: Those who will join me for the drive, those who live out west and those who will be flying out to meet us there! (Mom, Dad, Matt, Kathleen, Alec, Uncle Allan, Sharon, Melissa and maybe more!)

To say that I am excited is an understatement of grand proportions – I am thrilled, juiced up, feverish, charged, and many other words in the thesaurus.  Stay tuned and follow along 🙂


Have you done the drive from Toronto – Vancouver? Or have you been to some of the places I am headed? If so, I would love your tips and advice! Where should I stop? What should I see? Is there a place I am missing on my list of destinations?

Here are a few specific questions I have:

1) Any suggestions on what to do in Manitoba and Saskatchewan along the Trans Canada Highway? Should we just zoom through and enjoy seeing as far as the eye can see, or are there any stops to make along the way?

2) Banff- Jasper-Kamloops- Vancouver – what should we see here? Is this the best route? Where should we stop? I imagine the opportunities here are endless!

3) We are planning 4 nights in Yellowstone National Park. What are the best hikes and sites?

If you have something to share, leave a comment below!

7 responses to ““There and Back Again” ~ A Human’s Tale

  1. Wow Shannon that sounds like the most wonderful experience, you must have high tea at Fairmont Chateau at Lake Louise, the setting is so very beautiful and I remember it as a once in a lifetime treat! Keep posting pleasee as you travel, you make the trips you take really come alive for the armchair travellers

    • Thanks for the tip Wendy – I will add high tea to my list 🙂 Glad to hear that you will be following along!

  2. Don’t forget Radium hot springs. I remember driving, driving , driving, then suddenly seeing some type of Mountain goat on the side of the rocky pass, then a few kms ahead we pulled into Radium Hot Springs. All 6 of us soaked in the Hot water and looked at the surrounding views. It was amazing!!! I see that you are travelling to Kenora, we stopped at a little place and picked cherries fresh from the farmer’s trees–they were the best that we have ever eaten. (We paid for them of course.)

  3. Pingback: Travelling Hoopla! | Shan On Route·

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