We were incredibly lucky with the weather throughout our time in Prince Rupert. It rains, on average, 288 days of the year and on the morning of our departure we got to witness exactly what nature is capable of up here. I was so glad we were train bound, and not boarding a boat!
It was still dark when we pulled out of the station at 8am, and we travelled for the first hour through the eerie, misty gloom. Everything was blue. Dark, looming mountains, capped with clouds rose up from the steel coloured lakes and rivers beneath. It was definitely winter here, and skeletal trees stood sentry on the side of the railway line, the silver bark shining in the mist.
Our first railway journey was a two day epic from Prince Rupert on the northern coast of BC to Jasper in the Rocky Mountains. We travelled inland moving gradually south-east through sparsely populated valleys alongside rivers and lakes. As the day wore on, the blue gave way to the greens and browns more familiar to us in late autumn. Brown ferns dominated the embankment beside the tracks and evergreen trees stood tall all around us.
On the second day we could see signs that the temperature had dropped. Although skies were now bright blue, there was frost on the ground into the late morning and small lakes were frozen. By lunchtime the mountains were snowcapped and getting gradually higher, and the rivers had changed to turquoise, it was clear we were nearly in the Rockies.
More pictures of the journey are on flickr.