It was a perfect day for it; blue sky (until we hit Jasper) and fabulous temps. Often, the drive is very busy with tourists, but on the holiday Monday, it was surprisingly good. Here are some drive highlights:
|Not sure which mountain, but it was pretty.|
|Parker Ridge. We were last up hiking up there in August 2015|
|The Athabasca Glacier|
|Busses on the glacier. I did my ice bucket challenge here in 2014.|
|The glacier next door to the Athabasca|
We went straight to the Jasper Park Information Centre in town to try and get a permit to go to Edith Cavell on Wednesday; despite what the website says, you can only pick up your permit 24 hrs in advance, and only between 8 & 10 AM. We wanted to hike the meadows; no go, because it's been closed since June 22nd for a grizzly (information not available on the website). We decided to skip it.
After the useless trip to the Info centre, we went to the Valley of the Five Lakes for a short walk and picnic.
|Rain clouds move in as we start|
|Lunch stop, Lake 3|
|More Lake 3 views|
|Impossibly coloured water|
|There are Red Chairs here...|
|A creek around the lakes. Ominous clouds in the background|
- It only rained on us a bit.
- We were nearly run over by a mountain biker at the start of our walk; he had no interest in putting his off-leash dog on leash. We saw him a second time at Lake 1, and wouldn't put his dog on a leash then either, even when asked to by a gentleman who's wife was terrified of dogs. We did get someone else to put their dog on a leash, though.
- While I was sitting having lunch taking pictures, an 8 year old walked up and stood 1' in front of where I was sitting (and pointing my camera)
- We helped people who were "lost" (or at least confused) about the trail system and couldn't figure out the maps.
After that short, 90 min, 5.3 km walk (plus a 25 min lunch stop), we headed over to Maligne Canyon. We expected there would be throngs of people, and we were not disappointed. We started at Bridge 5 and walked up to the canyon start, which helped a lot putting the tourists behind us.
|Just above Bridge 5. The river's moving.|
|Down at the water|
|Pretty looking waterfall as we enter the canyon|
|A spring on a side hill cascades down|
|A big spring on a side wall joins the river|
|The canyon narrows...|
|Now a slot canyon 30 m deep|
|Falls under Bridge 3|
|A broader view|
|The water cascades to Bridge 3|
|Bridge 2. The slot canyon is 50 m deep here|
|The river's entrance to the canyon|
|Pools at the start|
|The slot canyon starts|
|...and cuts deeper...|
|And deeper still|
|Be careful near the edge...|
|The view from our room|