Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Day 6 Canada, 26/06, To Lake Louise

Our train trip had finished at Jasper and we were now coach bound, in the afore mentioned Prevost towards Lake Louise, with the same unfriendly but very skilled driver. Although the distance from Jasper to Lake Louise was not great, we diverted off the road known as the Icefields Parkway to see a few attractions along the way.

An elk, I believe.


Maligne Canyon. The noise was deafening.




 


Athabasca Falls.


 The next stop was Columbia Icefield, a very popular place for all tourists. From there we travelled on special vehicles up on to Athabasca Glacier after being transported by conventional buses from the busy Discovery Centre to the base of the glacier.

At the Discovery Centre looking at the glacier. It looked kind of dirty where we could see the vehicles on the glacier.


Closer.


The same as the vehicle we used to take us on to the glacier.


This hill does not look so steep but it was a 1 in 22 gradient. To give you an idea, a train will rarely climb more than a 1 in 2 gradient. My crash course in gradients has failed due to different standards being used in different countries. However, I would say the slope was more than 45 degreees. At the base a waterway washes soil from the vehicles tyres to prevent the glacier ice becoming spoilt.


Our host was ready with some whisky to warm us, but as you can see by the shirt sleeves, it was not really cold.



I think we could also see three other glaciers. Especially enlarge this photo to see the black material the glacier picked up. We now over 2000 metres in altitude, around the height of Australia's tallest mountain, Mount Kosciusko. The Columbian Icefields are pretty much the continental watershed where the melt drains into three oceans, the Arctic, the Pacific and the Atlantic. Since the early 20th century the glaciers have vastly receded, but as I keep telling you pinko lefties, it is nothing to do with global warming. Now burn more coal.


Our next stop was at the impossibly coloured Peyto Lake.


A short time later we stopped at Bow Lake. Beautiful, hey.


Yes, he did go in to the freezing water but not for long.

 

I think it was the exact same day when we stopped at Bow Lake that Marie of After 60 - The Next Ten published on her blog detail of where she and her companion stayed, right in this lodge across the water. There was certainly more snow when Marie was there.


Random along the way, somewhere.



Forest fires.



The setting and views at Lake Louise are beyond description.What a shame the grand old and much renovated hotel did not have air conditioning. It was stinking hot in our room and the public areas were hot too. At night fresh cool air was pulled in, cooling the public areas but that was no relief to us in our stinking hot room, in spite of the overhead fans. It really spoiled the visit for us. We simply must have a cool refuge if it is hot. Thankfully it was only one night but another night would have given us time to explore around the lake more. I did not really get a good photo of Lake Louise (but I just found I had some better taken the next day).


We were ordered to be downstairs for a group photo in an hour or so after our arrival, but our cases weren't delivered until later. We did not look our best. This photo is going to be crap, I told R as I squinted my eyes against the glare. The photo turned out to be quite good. Pretty skilled photographer, methinks.

The lake has moods.


I'll leave you with a video of the rushing water at the Maligne Canyon. If there is a blank square below the video, take no notice of it.




31 comments:

  1. Isn't the scenery fabulous? Interesting that so much snow had melted since I was there. Where did you stay at Lake Louise? Was it close to the lake or in the town? Apologies if you already mentioned where you were staying.

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    1. Marie, we stayed at the Fairmont Chateau and no, I did not make that clear. More about it tomorrow.

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  2. Andrew fantasic widlife . Definitely worth visiting. My favourite is your trip vehhicle the similar I saw in London..

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    1. Gosia, I wonder why they would need such a vehicle in London?

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  3. Stunning scenery, I'm so glad you went so that we can see it here in Aus. I'm impressed that you stood on a glacier, but surprised it wasn't cold. I don't think I'd enjoy the feeling of going up such a steep gradient.

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    1. River, from the coach with stops along the way was a good way to see the spectacular scenery. The vehicles are so massive, they feel very safe.

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  4. It was very cold on the glacier when we stood on it days after you did.

    I think Bow Lake is where went on the river safari looking for (and finding) bears. One of many highlights of our trip.

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    1. Victor, while we visited the same places as you, I am surprised that there is little similarity in what we did.

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  5. Oh how beautiful.
    How very beautiful.
    I remember glaciers in Antarctica, and being blown away by them. Cleaner glaciers. No traffic and no tourist trade I expect.
    Love that rushing water.

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    1. EC, you are fortunate indeed to have visited Antarctica. They do try really hard in Canada to minimise the impact of tourism, yet still allow places to be visited.

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  6. Oh my goodness, so beautiful, those lakes make me want to be in them, the color is so unusual. You had a fantastic trip, Andrew, all that beauty to behold.

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    1. Strayer, I really could not believe the colours of the lakes. It is all about suspended sediment in the water.

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  7. Out of this world scenery. Peyko and Bow lakes in particular are magnificent and impossibly coloured. Great photos, well done. Much as it's memorable to ascend a glacier, is it really necessary? I wonder if the authorities should just let us look and admire them?

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    1. Craig, I agree with you about the glaciers. The presence of people and vehicles must cause even more glacier melt. But to see the blue of the ice up close was pretty good.

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    2. I was on a glacier once in Alaska, well actually it was the Harding ice field, but I was on cross country skiis, so I don't think they do the damage of the big vehicle, but I don't know if even the vehicles are big enough to affect a glacier much.

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    3. Strayer, humans have been skiing on snow and ice for many many centuries without causing a problem. Just the heat from the vehicles must surely hasten the melting.

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  8. such picturesque scenery <3

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    1. <3 Fen? Typo or critical remark?

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    2. <3 is supposed to represent a heart. (On it's side.)

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  9. Such a beautiful blue sky. Beautiful scenery..

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    1. Margaret, while it was hot, we were fortunate to not have much in the way of rain.

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  10. I love wild rushing water.... beautiful. Canada has now gone up a notch in my 'to visit' book.

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    1. CM, the rivers and rough water are probably what impressed me the most.

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  11. Some of the pictures remind me of the Alpes ! Your trip so far was really beautiful !

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    1. Gattina, maybe not as spectacular as the Alps, but quite impressive.

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  12. Perfect timing! I was just contemplating a trip here. I much prefer your take and photos to the travel sites I'm investigating.

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    1. Bob, go for it. You won't regret it, but get your timing in the year right. Maybe a few weeks earlier than we were but after the lakes have thawed.

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  13. Amazing place well worth seeing.
    Merle.......

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    1. Merle, I highly recommend Canada to visit.

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  14. Oh so beautiful, Andrew; one of these days. After Australia.

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    1. Jac, I would suggest Canada over Australia.

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