Monday, 12 March 2012

The Not So Fun Part of Going to Edmonton

Trips to Edmonton are a very common and highly anticipated weekend getaway for us.  We like to get away to the city for a little shopping, a lot of eating and a stock up on Asian groceries.  The West Edmonton mall is where we usually go for our one-stop-shopping as everything is under one roof.  We can get the majority of our personal shopping done, get our Chinese groceries at T&T, and if we're pressed for time we can grab a bowl of Pho there as we're about to leave the city.

This trip a quick one for us - we went down on Friday and came back early on Saturday.  We power shopped/browsed on Friday evening until our feet were sore.  The Mister made off with two new pairs of boots and I got to check out Crate and Barrel and Restoration Hardware at Southgate Mall with a few good meals in between (next post).

One thing that remained the same on this trip was the traffic on the 4 hour drive down.  We left at 7:30 am on Friday morning and didn't have too much going south with us, but there were plenty of wide loads traveling north on 63 that morning.  The roads were a little wet and dirty, but there was no snow or rain falling and we only got stuck behind one big rig (driving 40kms/hr) for a few minutes.  These photos are of only a few of the over sized loads we saw on Friday, and a very typical depiction of what you will see on a drive to or from Edmonton any day of the week. 

Traffic on Highway 63 is a hot topic in these parts.  There are many that do not feel that twinning this highway will fix the problem of frequent accidents and deaths.  I agree that people make some very bad decisions on this stretch of road, endangering their lives and the lives of others.  These people will likely make the same bad decisions whether the highway is divided or not.  However, being forced to share the road with vehicles that cannot even reach half of the posted speed limit and stretch over the yellow line into oncoming traffic is really not acceptable.  But, for now we have to deal with it.  And while we are burdened to drive together we should remember these things:  It is never okay to pass on a solid line.  It is never necessary to drive 140+ kms/hr.  And it is rarely acceptable to pass 20 cars at a time.  Well, I'm not going to touch that one... Anyhow, as seen in the pictures below, I think it is obvious that this road needs widening.  Soon.   Like, sooner than 2015 soon - 9 years is a reeeeallly long time to twin a 400 km section of straight highway. 

Pretty standard.

Definitely a wide load, it was driving 40kms/hr.

Again, very common to see.

Check out the traffic that is stuck behind this rig.

Taking a rest.

This thing is tall.

There were two of them.

And a looong string of traffic stuck behind them both.

Pilot truck sending the warning of a wide load ahead.

Yeah, that's pretty big.

A regular occurrence.

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