Sunday, July 27, 2008

Day 27: Calgary to Drumheller AB, July 27

Will had specifically wanted to see the science centre in Calgary, so we did that first thing on Sunday morning. I tried hard to like it, but it was all too juvenile (mostly aimed at 3- to 7-year-olds) and mostly too old; lots of exhibits were broken or otherwise not working. They've got a big fund-raising campaign on for a new science centre to be completed in 2011, and even Will ended up asking if we could come back then.

There's big money in Calgary these days, which means lots of good restaurants; unfortunately most of them are still closed on Sundays. We topped up at a grocery store and headed to Drumheller.

As you head up highway 21 from the Transcanada, you suddenly start to see these big (perhaps 20 m tall?) holes in the landscape. The sides are worn away, and the bottoms are flat; I'm still not sure what causes them, although I hope to find out tomorrow. The road started dipping into them, and by the time we were in Drumheller they were spectacular, and we were surrounded by the walls of these crazy formations. The town itself was bigger then I expected, and far too commercial and touristy for me to like. I managed to get us lost on the way to the big museum I wanted to go to, but fortunately it's an absolutely world-class museum and I was happy again moments after walking in. The Royal Tyrrell Museum houses some of the most magnificent specimens of dinosaur bones found in the Canadian Badlands, and they're displayed very well. (I couldn't help but remember the poorly-curated Costume Museum).

Here's Will hamming it up with a Dunkleosteus skull.

I had wanted to stay in Midlands Provincial Park, since it's in the middle of the Badlands, but it's day-use only. Instead we're at the "Dinosaur Trail RV Park"; everything is named about dinosaurs here and has statues of them all about. Will was particularly fond of one painted to look like a robot. He finally managed to find some kids to play with in the playground, and I'm finally up to date on our blog!

Total so far: 10 007 km!

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