Jasper – 3 July 2015

Today is the day we have to make our journey home. 020 Skywalk

Stopping along the way at the Columbia Icefields Centre to take the Skywalk Tour.  The Skywalk is an impressive, glass floored observation deck, towering some 918feet (280 meters) above the valley floor below.

0703 045 Skywalk

The first step was the worst, but we bravely stepped on!

022 Natasha on Skywalk

029 Eamonn & Natashas legs on Skywalk

030 Skywalk

031 Skywalk

029 Eamonn & Natasha on Skywalk

024 Eamonn on Skywalk

025 Janet on Skywalk

Some views from the Skywalk.

027 Skywalk

028 Skywalk

021 Skywalk

We also managed to squeeze in lunch at Lake Louise on the way home!

0703 050 Lake Louise

We would say, if you are in the area, the Skywalk is well worth a visit.


Jasper – 2 July 2015

We started the day with a trip up Whistlers Mountain.

001 Cable Car

Where we got some amazing views of Jasper townsite and the surrounding lakes and mountains.

002 Whistler Mountain

003 Whistler Mountain

006 Whistler Mountain

010 Whistler Mountain

We also got treated to a Hoary Marmot!004 Whistler Mountain - Marmot

005 Whistler Mountain - Marmot

005a Whistler Mountain - Marmot

Amazingly, there were some very pretty and colourful flowers at the top (surviving at around 7,500ft / 2300 meters)007 Whistler Mountain Flowers

008 Whistler Mountain Flowers

Back on the ground, we saw this lovely bear on the road to Medicine Lake.  015 Jasper Bear

016 Jasper Bear

Medicine Lake020 Medicine Lake

Maligne Lake021 Maligne Lake

022 Maligne Lake

023 Maligne Lake

We saw a third bear (didn’t get a pic of the second) on the drive back from Maligne Lake.

024 Bear 2

025 Bear 2

After a nice meal in the Tekarra Lodge Restaurant we took a drive to one of our favourite spots, Patricia Lake.030 Patricia Lake Evening

The perfect end to a lovely and relaxing day.


Jasper – 1 July 2015

As we had Eamonn’s niece, Natasha visiting, we thought Jasper would be a stunning introduction to the Canadian Rockies.  I know we have photographed many of these scenes before, but it is just so beautiful, you can’t help but take a few more!!  Shame about the dull sky on the drive there.

001 Lake & Mountains

002 Lake & Mountains

This was a Clarks Nutcracker at Lake Louise.  Unfortunately with it being Canada Day, Lake Louise was incredibly busy so we thought we would carry on and try again on the journey back.

003 Clarks Nutcracker at Lake Louise

As we drove the Icefields Parkway, we stopped off at many scenic spots along the way, the first being Peyto Lake.

005 Peyto Lake

This area is known as Big Bend and you can see the Icefields Parkway as it snakes through the mountains.

006 Big Bend & Big hill

This is a shot of the snow still present on the mountains.

007 Snowy Mountain

Another stop was the amazing and powerful Sunwapta Falls.

008 Sunwapta Falls

009 Sunwapta Falls

010 Sunwapta Falls

011 Sunwapta Falls

As we were driving along, we spotted this Elk Stag.

015 Elk near Jasper

After dinner, we took a look at the peaceful Beauvert Lake, which was just gorgeous at that time of night.

017 Lake Beauvert Evening

018 Lake Beauvert Evening

Before long though, Elk started to appear out of the woods and we were soon surrounded.  Thankfully though, they just seemed to have dinner on their mind.

020 Lake Beauvert Evening

021 Lave Beauvert Evening

This one walked right past us, and it was huge.  Shame it blurred (it was going quite dark and the camera didn’t like it!).

022 Lake Beauvert Evening

It was a lovely and relaxing first day in Jasper.


Shania’s Farewell Tour!

Shania Twain has announced that she is going to wrap up her performing career with a three month farewell tour. So we decided to take the trip to Edmonton to see her one last time. (At the time of booking the tickets, she wasn’t planning to come to Calgary – although we believe she is now).
Anyway, it was a great show and below is a bit of video footage and few photos.

001 Shania

003 Shania

005 Shania

006 Shania

009 Shania       E&J

Carefree, Arizona

Carefree is a quaint town that we like to go and visit, but the couple of years we have seen many shops closing and a rather attractive (or could be) shopping Plaza getting more and more run down. We do hope they inject some cash into this area as it could be and should be an amazing and vibrant place.

Carefree is famous for it’s sundial, which was erected in Sundial Circle Plaza in 1959 and is the third largest sundial in the western hemisphere. The sundial is 90ft in diameter, 35 feet tall and 72 feet long.






Pioneertown, is quite a strange place as you think of it as a Ghost Town and yet people still live there.  The town started as a live-in Wild West motion picture set, which was built in the 1940’s. It was designed this ways so actors had a place to live their homes and other buildings were used in the movies. A number of movies such as the Cisco Kid, were filmed here.

As we strolled down Mane Street (no, not a typo), it was totally deserted, and yet we couldn’t help but feel like we were being watched!

002 003

It had all mod cons, including restrooms!!

005There is the Sheriffs office.008

007And also a post office, which seems to be a real, working post office!



Some of the items in the gardens are a little strange, this one looks a bit like a replica of Tombstone and the one below is full of desks and old typewriters!


011The church.

012Apparently Gene Autry frequently taped his show at the six-lane Pioneer Bowl bowling alley. According to the Morongo Basin Historical Society, the bowling alley is one of the oldest in continuous use in California (source: Wikepedia).


If you choose to stay a little longer, it does have its own motel too!

It might be a little odd, but we are happy to have a stroll around anywhere as long as the sun is shining!


Elvis Presley Honeymoon Home, Palm Springs

This home was built in 1960 and was known as the “House of Tomorrow” – you can see why…when Elvis first pulled up outside this home, he commented that somebody had gone and landed a spaceship!  Elvis rented this home for around a year starting in 1966, and paid $21,000 (£12,500). It is a 5 bed, 5 bath, 4,695sq.ft home.  The home was built in 4 perfect circles, so no room in the home is completely square!

001 Exterior front

004 Exterior Front

005 Exterior FrontFloating steps set within a waterfall lead you to the entrance.002 Steps

002a StepsHere is a picture of Elvis and Priscilla standing on those steps in front of the gate.Elvis & Pracilla on in front of gates2The huge living room is complete with a built-in 64-foot curved sofa! Although when Evlis was here in the 60’s he probably had to wade through about 3 inches of shag pile carpet! 009 Living Room

007 Living Room

Here are a couple of photos of Elvis and Priscilla sitting in this very room.

Elvis & Pricilla on Sofa Elvis & Pricilla on Sofa2

Elvis & Pricilla on Sofa3 Elvis & Pricilla on Sofa4







The living room has a fabulous view out to the pool.  You can see that the steps to the right of the photo inside the house line up perfectly with the steps outside the home.

008 Living RoomThis is the dining room, the stairs you can see beyond, lead to the upper level of the home.  010 Dining RoomThe round kitchen, complete with round central island.015 Kitchen

016 Kitchen

017 KitchenNo kitchen is complete without gadgets! 018 KitchenThe next room is The Jungle Room – he had one in Graceland and he had one in Palm Springs! It is sort of a lounge/study/get together area. There is a vintage jukebox in which you are allowed to play with, all Elvis tunes of course!019 Music RoomThe master bedroom is huge and has panoramic views of the mountains.020 Master Bedroom

021 Master BedroomThe en-suite bathroom, sadly the old sunken bath has since been replaced with the one shown. On the vanity unit is a bottle of High Karate Cologne, so you can get a whiff of Elvis, although we have since seen that Brut was also a firm favourite of his.  025 Bathroom

027 Bathroom

026 Bathroom Down in the garage is one of Elvis’s cars, it needs some work and restoration – we hope they do it. 030 CarOutside is the pool area. The pool is quite unique, in that they are usually oblong or kidney shaped, this one is the same shape as the roof on the house!

041 Pool

042 PoolIn 1967, it was by this pool, that Elvis and Priscilla were to be married and all the arrangements were in place.  However, a local journalist got wind of the wedding and set up camp across the road.  Because of this, they decided at the last minute to escape out of the back of the house in the dead of night, they took Frank Sinatras limo to his jet and flew to Las Vegas.  They were married the next day in the Aladdin Hotel before flying back for their Honeymoon, which only lasted for about 3 days before they headed back to Graceland.  The home became known as the Honeymoon Hideaway.Elvis & Pricilla by poolDespite how long Elvis did or didn’t spend there, it is a very interesting house in its own right and we really enjoyed our look around this lovely home.

If you are in Palm Springs and wish to visit, or would just like more information click here

Hollywood Homes in Palm Springs

Back in the day, many Hollywood stars set up home in Palm Springs, (be sure to See Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway Post too).  The reason being (we believe) is that the film makers at the time didn’t want their stars to travel too far from Hollywood and this condition was written into their contracts.

Over the course of several days, we took a drive out to one or two of these homes and here’s what we found:

Liberace’s House: This home was built in 1952 and has the most amazing piano mail box, which we just loved.

009 Liberace Home

008 Liberace Mailbox

007 Liberace Mailbox

Kurt Russell & Goldie Hawn lived here before moving to Bighorn in 2003!

010 Kurt Russell & Goldie HawnBarry Manilow owned this home from the 1970’s until 1993.  It apparently has a huge pool and a tennis court.  011 Barry ManilowThis home was owned by Walt Disney during the last four years of his life.  001 Walt Disneys HouseBing Crosby lived here for over 30 years with his first wife and their sons.  The home was built in 1934 and they lived here well into the 1960’s.  It is in a lovely setting with a park just across the street. It is claimed that it is under this roof, that President John F Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe committed adultery.  An affair that went on for eight years and there are apparently many other rendezvous sites for the pair in and around the desert!012 Bing Crosby

012a Bing Crosby

Elvis Presley owned this home from 1970-1977 and he bought it for $105,000. It is rumoured that he bought it as a reminder to his honeymoon days in Palm Springs.  He and Priscilla spent about three months a year in Palm Springs.  In 1971 Elvis added a fountain to the back yard, (which my sister Linda Lewis knows all about, but that’s another story)!  After their divorce in 1973 the home became more like a boys club. Elvis remodeled the living room and apparently recorded nine songs here.  You used to be able to take a tour of this home but the previous owners, who lived in the home for 9 years and are about $50million in debt, have have since been evicted and taken the memorabilia with them, it has been a long and drawn out legal battle and we don’t know the in’s and out’s of it, but we do know that it is a real shame that you can no longer take a tour of this home, which is considered the second most valuable piece of Elvis memorabilia, second of course to Graceland!  In January 2014 the home was put on the market for $3,950,000 and we think it now has new owners.

002 Road To Elvis House

003a Elvis House

003 Elvis HouseThis is no longer on the chimney, we assume it was one of the many items removed by the previous owners!Elvis HomeLong before Elvis bought the home above and long before he bought Graceland, Elvis rented this 3 bedroom, 4 bath home.005 Elvis House 2

006 Elvis House 2



The Living Desert, Palm Springs

It was a beautiful day to be outside today, so we decided to head to Living Desert Zoo.

The first animal we came across was this very attractive Mexican wolf.001 Wolf

002 Mexican Wolf

We then came to the Bobcats.003 Bob Cat

004 Bobcat

and the Serval005 Serval

The Mountain Lion (or Cougars as we know them) was spectacular, although he did look a bit hungry!  These are the beasts that get spotted around Okotoks from time to time.006 Mountain Lion

007 Mountain LionThe Wild Boar011 WarthogThis poor big horned cow looked like it could barely lift its head with the weight of its horns!012 Longhorn CattleThese are Greater Kudus

015 Greater Kudu

And of course the very entertaining and amusing Merekats!016 Meerkat

017 Meerkat

As well as animals, it also has a fairly spectacular outdoor miniature railway – it is very detailed. 010 Trains

For more information on the Living Desert in Palm Springs click here, it is a great day out, if you are in the area.


Palm Springs, California

We have now arrived in Palm Springs.  Our accommodation is set in lovely grounds and we have a view of the pool from the kitchen window.  We also have hummingbirds come and visit most days!020 Pool area and view from our unitToday we thought we would visit El Paseo Shopping area, which is one of our favourite high streets in the area.  Below are a couple of the sculptures along the street.021 El Paseo

023 El Paseo