Misty, damp morning. Out early had a look at splendid old buildings
in this nice town. Michael had to get a routine blood test done
(for a frightening price). Visited Railway Museum which was good.
Went To Nickelodeon Museum which is an amazing, entertaining
and fascinating place.
Weather looking a bit mixed but headed west to Glacier NP where
we found most trails closed due to avalanche risk, but did start
of Beaver Creek Trail. Returned to Rogers Pass where visitor
centre quite informative and walked along old railway on what
had turned into lovely afternoon. On way back to Revelstoke called
in at and enjoyed both Giant Cedars and Skunk Cabbage Trails.
Back through Rogers Pass to Yoho NP to Emerald Lake which was
busy. Walked to far end of lake seeing lots of orchids, good
scenery too. Returned via Golden to and south into Columbia Valley
for pleasant run through nice, quiet counryside to Radium Hot
Springs for three nights. Gateway Inn, Radium Hot Springs.
Fairly ordinary place with clean but rather cramped and poorly
laid out unit. Helpful people but quite a bit of traffic noise.
Dull day with persistent light rain, low cloud and poor visibility
after trip to Invermere for shopping first thing so did nowt.
Weather improving as drove through Kootenay NP with some very
good scenery to go to Johnston Canyon in Alberta (impressive).
Returned via Fireweed Trail, Marble Canyon (impressive) and Paint
Pots (intriquing) Trails but weather deteriorating. Weather improved
after break for tea at Vermillion Crossing.
Beautiful morning and back through Kootenay NP to Bow Valley
Parkway and Lake Louise where carparks getting very busy and
toilets still 'closed for season'. Went up to Fairview Lookout
but no view at all so waste of time and energy. Back to lake
bottom marred by hideous tourist development, view up lake good
but (perhaps because weather turning unsettled) fell far short
of hype. Then to Moraine Lake which also very busy (carpark almost
full - in peak season must be dire). Impressive view of lake.
On way back stopped at layby short way down for lunch with splendid
views. North on Icefields Parkway which we had expected to be
high spot of trip but not as good as we expected, some nice views
but still an awful lot of trees. Now dull as walked along Bow
Lake (impressive). Path up to Peyto Lake interesting and view
at top would be fantastic on nice day, but marred by hordes of
noisy people. Further north Mistaya Canyon was worth a visit.
The Crossing Resort, Saskatchewan Crossing. Large complex
in middle of nowhere so expensive for what it is, friendly reception.
Unit bit dated and no kettle or microwave but clean and adequate
for one night and virtually nowhere else. Meals available in
restaurant and cafeteria.
Wet start so sat over pot of tea in cafe. Then improved and headed
north on glorious morning which did not last. As had all day
for short trip decided we would park up for rainstorms which
were heavy and slow moving and wait for good weather, had to
do this several times but good weather in between. Columbia Icefield
marred by huge service centre and crowds so we moved on quickly.
Sunwapta Falls worth visit and walk down to lower falls, Athabasca
Falls impressive. Liitle Bubble Springs interesting for a few
minutes wander. Down to Jasper for four nights. Columbine
House, Jasper. Very comfortable, quiet, lower floor unit
with continental breakfast provided. Good supply of maps and
books with very helpful owner. Highly recommended.
Fantastic morning so up to Mount Edith Cavell for walkies. Walked
up Cavell Meadows Trail as far a open, very quiet and excellent
view of Angel Glacier, also plenty of marmots and pikas. Back
to main path now getting busy. All very good. Went to do Five
Lakes Trail but carpark full and overflowing so to Old Fort Point
instead. Hard slog up, reasonable view from top but trail beyond
bit ordinary (more trees) and quite steep and loose in places
for a lowland walk. Explored Jasper, pleasant but very tourist
Bright day but not as clear for trip up to Maligne Lake. Busy
with overnighters and got busier. Lake from tourist centre was
a bit dull but we explored along west edge of lake as far as
we could which was good. Maligne Canyon on way back parking at
bottom to go up and back. Lower bit ordinary, parts of canyon
awe-inspiring. A lot of boot-polished limestone which we suspected
could be slippery when wet, and lower path muddy.
Damp morning so took things steady. Up to Five Lakes Trail (early
so empty carpark) for interesting little walk with improving
weather. Back to Jasper and up to stables for Patricia Lake Trail
with detour to Riley Lake. Good aspen country in places, otherwise
a bit ordinary with lots more trees and not many views.
Superb morning for good run west towards Hinton then north on
Highway 40. Wm A Switzer Park nice stop with friendly warden
and pleasant little trail. 64km diversion down rough and lonely
road to Rock Lake which was very quiet and well worthwhile. Boring
run on to Grande Cache, pleasant houses in really very nice country.
To Sulphur Gates, all very good. Would have liked more time here.
Mount Hamel B&B, Grande Cache. Quite excellent,
friendly family B&B with good room. Access to kitchen, very
ample DIY breakfast provided. Shared bathroom. Excellent value
and highly recommended.
Good run north initially but weather and view poorer when back
on prairie. Sexsmith interesting stop, locals intrigued to see
tourists, especially from England. Brief stop at Dunvegan but
not much there and now getting wet. Night at Peace River where
weather improving. Third Mission Heritage, Peace River.
Large very well equipped flat in old Mission. High standards,
but bedroom a bit small.
Dry, cloudy for pleasant run south after local viewpoints. Stopped
at Mclennan for nature reserve walk which was very cold, turned
wet later. Went for walk at Slave Lake but storm threatening
so retreated. Holiday Inn Express, Slave Lake. New
building, very comfortable, good breakfast.
South over Swan Hills (nice) on good morning. Stopped at Fort
Assiniboine for interesting little museum then walk in Sandhills
Wilderness which interesting. Now very hot for remaining trip
to Fort Saskatchewan. Inglis Avenue B&B, Fort Saskatchewan.
See 21 May.
Early departure for leisurely run through Elk Island NP with
few walks, then to Nisku to drop off car in good time for flight