Thursday, April 28, 2011

Welcome To Canada....How did you get here??

Yesterday we drove the last leg of our journey back to Saskatchewan. We spent the previous night in Havre, Montana. Since the border crossing doesn't open until 10:00 AM we took our time in the morning and winterized the 5th wheel, organized and packed some of our stuff and went over our list of items we needed to declare at customs. AT 10:00 we were loaded up and ready to head north. But on the edge of town there was a road block up that said "Road Closed To Through Traffic". As we sat there contemplating our next move, which would have included turning around the truck and 5th wheel on a hill with a slight curve, a vehicle came from the opposite direction. The guy stopped and told us the road would be closed for at least 3 hours, possibly longer. He must have seen the looks of despair on our faces because he then proceeded to give us a set of lengthly directions of a route that would take us around the highway construction and still lead us to the border.
Senor Ping backed the rig up (well, actually down the hill) and turned us around and away we went...."when you come to the corner keep going straight, out on a grid road, past the golf course about 5 miles and then turn right and go another 3 or 4 miles and then you'll come to the highway and that will lead you to the Willow Creek Crossing". The road was not too bad for a grid road, there were some ruts but we slowed down and didn't have any problems and we eventually came to the highway. There was a bit of traffic on the road, so we decided that other people obviously knew about the detour as well.
When we arrived at the US border crossing we had to pull in to the US Customs office first. A big sign said, " Wait for the Officer". There weren't any other vehicles there, but it seemed like it was taking him a long time to come and wave us through. Finally, he came to the window and said "How did you get here?" We explained about the alternate route we had taken and he told us that when the road is marked closed that means it is detours, "do not pass go, do not collect $100"!!!!! According to him, if the state police had seen us they could have fined us! HUMPF!!! No one told us that!!!! He must have been happy to see someone though, because he chatted at length before letting us head to the Canadian Customs office.
Again, we were met by the same question, "How did you get here?" We repeated the story about the detour we took and they were amazed. They had been told that the Shepherd Road (the one we took) was full of ruts and that vehicles couldn't drive through to the highway. We were the first vehicle they had seen and were certainly not expecting to see any more until the road was repaired. While we were there, two vehicles came from the north. The road was blocked and an officer went out and told them the road was crossing into the US for them!! It would be a long drive out of their way to find another crossing open.
After a quick run through of the usual questions, checking of receipts and Abbey's papers, we were on our way. We were back in Saskatchewan!!! The next 3 hours we were bumped and jostled around as we drove the rest of the way home. The detour road, that was supposed to be closed, was much better than most of the highway we drove on for the rest of the trip. But, as
Dorothy said, "There's no place like home!!"

1 comment:

Pat said...

I'm glad you didn't get a fine. Who ever heard of if a road was closed that meant "no detours"? That's crazy talk, I tell ya!