It’s never been done before, at least not in the CFL modern era, but the Edmonton Elks are about to play three games in seven days — all on the road.
This road trip starts Thursday and the first game is Saturday afternoon in Regina. It will include travel to three provinces with stops in Toronto and Vancouver as well.
When the Elks return home after the game Nov. 19 against the B.C. Lions, we will have travelled almost 5,000 kilometres.
The team will be on the road for nine days. For the 630 CHED broadcast team, it will be a 10-day road trip.
Postcards from the Road will be a behind-the-scenes look at this trip through my eyes, including candid, or not-so-candid, shots from the airports, hotels, stadiums and cities I am visiting.
We will get some behind-the-scenes shots from the trip that will hopefully let you understand more about what it’s like to travel with a professional football team.
— Morley Scott
This story post will be updated daily starting Friday, Nov. 12. Check back here for Morley’s behind-the-scenes takes and watch the adventure unfold on the 630 CHED Instagram page.
Day 9: Elks @ Lions
The last full day of the trip started with the game-day walk along the sea wall and finished with a walk to B.C. Place for the game including a stop at Terry Fox Plaza.
The game was a lopsided loss to the B.C. Lions as both teams wrapped up their seasons. It’s pretty clear the Elks had nothing left in the tank playing their third game in seven days.
Saturday will be the final plane ride home!
Day 8: Vancouver prep day
A quiet umbrella day in Vancouver with rain off and on all day.
I met with Jaime Elizondo in the Elks big meeting room. They have the chairs spaced out for COVID-19 protocols
Then I found QB Taylor Cornelius In a corner in the hotel studying notes and the playbook for tomorrow’s game. You will hear from him and Sean Whyte on Friday’s pre-game show.
I’ve also been running in to a lot of Elks fans who made the trek to Vancouver for the game!
Day 7: Toronto to Vancouver
It was an early start to Day 7 for the five-hour flight from Toronto to Vancouver — that’s 3,336 kilometres for a total of 6,045 so far on this trip.
A new city means airplane number three and hotel room number three in Vancouver, plus more time at a new office set up doing game prep.
Day 6: Game day in Toronto
Game day in Toronto started with my usual game day walk along the waterfront. I also took the most Toronto picture possible featuring Rogers Centre, the CN Tower and a streetcar!
Once back at the hotel, I talked a little football with Elks centre David Beard after running into him in the lobby.
Then it was off to the stadium for the Elks and Argos where we had former EE player Natey Adjei on the pre-game show
We’re off to the airport at 6 a.m. tomorrow for a long flight to Vancouver.
Day 5: Prep day in Toronto
It was a busy prep day for me with lots of time in my room in front of the computer. I also met with both Elks coach Jaime Elizondo — we had the big room to talk to him — and QB Taylor Cornelius
My day started with a walk by Maple Leaf Gardens where spent a lot of time as a kid. It’s now Part of Ryerson University and it’s also a grocery store.
When the Elks arrived, players got massages from about 10 therapists hired by the club. This is a tough turn around.
And the day ended with me waiting in the lobby for my Skip the Dishes order to arrive.
Game day tomorrow!
Day 4: Regina to Toronto
Day 4 saw us travel 2,019 kilometres from Regina to Toronto, meaning we’ve travelled a total of 2,709 kilometres so far.
From the snow in Regina, the move has been made to the rain in Toronto
Airplane number two and hotel room number two all in today’s postcards, plus Hockey Hall of Famer Kevin Lowe is featured prominently in Toronto these days
Sunday was a work day at the hotel, getting the prep started for Tuesday’s game.
We’re expecting the Argos to sit some players after clinching first in the East over the weekend so each team will be allowed to dress five extra players. That means 10 more names and numbers to memorize.
Day 3: Game day in Regina
Game day for me is very regimented starting with the game day walk early and then the final prep before heading to the stadium, usually about three hours before game time We take a cab; players on the bus.
Elks were close again, but an eight straight loss on a cool afternoon at a beautiful stadium. Yes, the windows were open.
Thought about crashing a wedding at the hotel post game — instead, pizza
Travel day tomorrow bright an early — actually just early.
Day 2: Regina
A chilly day in Regina started with a walk to Mosaic Stadium followed by work in the hotel room and our pre game meeting with Elks head coach Jaime Elizondo. Chances are it will be windy on game day as the flags outside my hotel room indicate. Also a postcard courtesy of Elks punter Hugh O’Neill as the team bus was greeted at the Regina airport by a green-and-gold fan.
The day finished with a herd of Elk in the elevator and dinner with the Regina media gang – that shot courtesy Gerry Moddejonge of Postmedia.
Day 1: Edmonton to Regina
On Nov. 11, we travelled 690 kilometres east to Regina, Sask. The day started with a goodbye to Finley, our first plane trip and hotel room of the week and our first look at Mosaic stadium in about two years! We also ran into the Edmonton Oil Kings at the hotel.
Oh, and Saskatchewan has snow.