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Day 5 - Travel to Cochrane, AB

These were a common sight in Southern Alberta. At first, I thought they were the Provincial flower of Alberta! These windmills generate 22% of Alberta's power from wind energy. Come on USA, let's get on board with this idea.

Our first stop was in Fort Macleod, AB. We were able to park the large rigs in the curling rink parking lot.

The main street of Fort Macleod is Alberta's only provincially designated historic area. The historic Empress Theater on Main Street is the oldest continuously operating theater west of Winnipeg.

A tour was scheduled for the Museum of the Northwest Mounted Police. The Museum documents and explores the challenging early years of the NWMP, now known as the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
The Museum is a unique heritage facility whose mandate is to preserve, display and interpret the history of the NWMP and their significant historical relationship with the local First Nations people and of the key role they played in the early development of Western Canada.
This cart became known as the Red River Cart, since it was first used in the Red River Valley, Manitoba. Only basic hand tools were used to make the the cart. When the cart broke down on the trails, repairs were made from whatever wood was available, with hide straps to bind it together.

This was a typical room for NWMP personnel. The bed is made of boards laid on saw horses and maybe a straw mattress.

These are the two basic uniforms of the NWMP. The official uniform on the right, when they wanted to be noticed and the buckskin on the left, when they wanted to observe and not be noticed.

This is the interior of the Fort which includes replicas of the blacksmith shop, chapel, infirmary, kitchen and dining rooms. That's our Wagon Master, Skeeter walking across the gravel... but wait, that's Skeeter on the wood walkway as well. It's just amazing how he can be in two places at once!

Tools of the blacksmith,
and the carpenter.

Stained glass windows in the Chapel

along with the altar and a pump organ.

This was the dentist chair in the infirmary. Notice the foot-driven drill... OUCH!

Planters adorned some of the windows.
 


The Nanton Air Museum was an optional stop along the way.

Outside the museum is Canada's Bomber Command Memorial honoring the Canadians who gave their life serving the Bomber Command during 1939 - 1945.

This is the inscription on the far left of the panel.

This is the main attraction of the museum, it is an Avro Lancaster MK X four engine bomber. These were used by the Canadians and British to bomb the Germans during WWII.

What amazed me was this big four engine bomber had only one pilot with a total of a 7 man crew. All the American bombers had a pilot and a co-pilot.

This is the bomb bay with one of the larger bombs on display.

The interior looking forward to the cockpit.

Bill Shallbetter tries his hand at the controls in a "Walter Mitty" moment.

This is the Link Trainer. It was used to train pilots during WWII and continued to be used well into the 50's and 60's. Pilots learned to fly by instruments with the instructor sitting at a table while a plotter showed the path the pilot was flying.

This evening we had a social at 4:30 where we gathered to nosh and chat about the days activities.

There were a few sprinkles and Jim Lenneman was taking precautions with his head gear. He is showing off his pretzel M&M which he is ready to consume.

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