Canada - Rocky Mountains
October 11th, 2017
In August I‘ve visited Canada for a 4 weeks roadtrip. The plan was to start from Vancouver to Vancouver Island and then continue to Alberta and the Rocky Mountains. During the first part of the trip we had a lot of smoke due to the wildfires that spread over huge parts of British Columbia. So this Blog will concentrate on the Canadian Rockies along the border between British Columbia and Alberta.
The first stop along the way was Wells Gray Provincial Park with the stunning Helmcken Falls. Here the water falls down over 140 meters before it reaches the ground. What makes this falls so special is the fact that the water falls down into a vast canyon. Really a cool place.
We managed to get some of the very limited permits for Berg Lake Trail at Mount Robson Provincial Park. At the end of the 23 kilometer long trail lies Berg Lake, surrounded by the beautiful scenery of Mount Robson and some glaciers that calve right into Berg Lake. My expectations were high as it is said that it’s one of Canada’s most beautiful hikes and I was not disappointed. Sitting on the edge of Berg Lake with a camping stove warming a (rather ;) ) delicious camping meal in front of us and watching the glaciers while the evening light illuminates Mount Robson, is an absolute epic experience. Unfortunately on the third day it was raining pretty hard and as we both didn’t want to spend a whole day inside our tent we decided to walk the 23 kilometers out one day earlier.
Our next stop was Jasper with all the highlights in the surrounding Jasper National Park. Unfortunately we had strong smoke again and could only guess what the mountain scenery is like. After checking some webcams and the weather forecast the decision to move on was clear. Along the Icefield Parkway the view didn’t clear up till we come closer to Banff National Park. We spent the next days here around Lake Lousie, checked out the photo locations along Bow Valley Highway and moved on to Banff.
An absolute “must go” was Mount Assiniboine. I’ve seen such beautiful images from this scenery that there was no doubt, I want visit this place. So we’ve booked a helicopter to bring us to the Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park and planned to stay for 3 days in our tent. Unfortunately the park had to be closed due to wildfires so it was very uncertain if we are able to go… Right on the day before departure the good news arrived, the park will be open again tomorrow and we will be able to fly in! The short Helicopter ride into the backcountry opened the beauty of the area from an aerial perspective and we were both pretty excited. After setting up the tent close to Lake Magog we started to explore the surrounding area. We enjoyed sunset from the “Nub”. The view from up there is magical, as far as your eyes can see only mountains, lakes and forest – I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen a place more beautiful and wild than this one…
After the amazing days at Mount Assiniboine we’ve spent some days around Banff. There are several interesting places like Two Jack Lake, Vermillion Lakes or Castle Mountain in the Bow River Valley. Time flew by and the end of our trip came closer, as we haven’t been lucky with the light at Moraine Lake and Peyto Lake in the first place, we wanted to give it a second chance. And that was a good decision. So we enjoyed our last days around some of the iconic places along the Icefield Parkway.
We haven’t seen a lot of wildlife during this trip. Probably due to the wildfires. I was told that the animals went to higher places. Anyway, a Black Bear right next to the road and a family of Big Horn Sheep’s were among the highlights.
We really enjoyed the trip – our Truck Camper, the nice Canadian people, the unique mountains of the Rockies, photographing in the peaceful and untouched nature… I will come back, that’s for sure.