Travel Journal

Banff - Jasper - May 8

(Wednesday 9 May 2007) by Karin
Woooooow.... What a beautiful day. Awesome views and loads of fun but let's start at the beginning.
Up early as departure was set at 8:00 today and I wanted to check emails etc. before leaving. View from the 'computer room' was breathtaking.... snowy mountains. Then another ride on the Moose. Connecting Banff and Jasper national parks is highway 93, also know as the Icefields Parkway. Often called one of the most beautiful drives in the world, and beautiful it is.
Lake Louise
Lake Louise
First stop ... Lake Louise. Blue sky, no clouds, great view of the mountains and the lake (apparently that doesn't happen too often so we were lucky). Went for a little walk but didn't have much time (hope to have time to come back here). Back on the bus and off to the next stop. Maligne Canyon... Where we could see water at work.
Mistaya River
Mistaya River
The Mistaya River leaves the flat-bottomed valley here and plunges into the narrow canyon. Potholes in the rock formed by swirling water and rock debris, indicate previous water levels. The rumbling water below is still at work - cutting, abrading and dissolving the limestone rock. Two and a half miles downstream the Mistaya joins the North Saskatchewan River. A 15 minute stop to take in the view and make pictures. I know, I know, you are wondering where they are. They will be coming but cannot do this at the hostel where I am now. Just a little more patience please.
Then on to Columbia Icefield... the largest ice cap South of the Arctic circle. Covers an area the size of Vancouver (325 km sq) and is as thick as 350 m. After the easy walk at Mistaya Canyon we turned it up a notch and hiked onto the
Athabasca Glacier
Athabasca Glacier
Athabasca Glacier (a glacier forms in an area where more snow falls in the winter than melts in the summer). Did you ever sink more then knee deep into the snow with ankle high boots on? Guess what happens? Right ... snow in your boots and believe me, that's cold cold icy cold.
Hike to the Athabasca Glacier
Hike to the Athabasca Glacier
Sometimes hard to get your leg back out so laughed a lot. Then balancing on a bridge railing or again up to your waist in snow. Did make it to the other side without falling but barely. Got really windy at some point and then they tried to make me laugh. Hard to keep your balance then. Legs were all wobbly when I finally made it to the other end. Fell off on the way back. Good fun but I did get very wet feet. And snow in your boots is cold cold icy cold. Believe me.
After that I was dropped at the hostel where I quickly checked in, dumped my bags and got back on the bus to go to Jasper town (hostel is about 7 km outside town). Did a little town exploring and took taxi back to the hostel. No more shuttle buses to HI after 4:45 pm.
Prepared some dinner, checked some brochures for hikes and went to bed. Big dorm room at this hostel (about 40 beds I think). Not as nice as the previous hostels and light out at 11:00. Annoying if you still want to read or get things ready for the following day.

KK

  • dag zus by Anouchka


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