Stanley Glacier Hike

Since Monday was a holiday and the weather was nice I decided to take on the Stanley Glacier Hike, a 10.9km hike with 606 metres of elevation gain located near Lake Louise. When I arrived at the trailhead at 7:00am there was still a moderate amount of rain, despite the weather report stating there shouldn’t be any rain. I was considering turning back and calling it a day, but I sat in my car for about twenty minutes and the rain let up.

I started hiking at 7:20am and the hike starts out as a gentle gradual climb up through a new forested area (the area had burned down from a fire numerous years ago and there were some smaller trees). After emerging from the forest into the meadow you could start to see Stanley Glacier and a large waterfall from a distance. The meadow area was quite flat and super pretty.

2019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 12019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 22019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 32019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 42019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 52019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 6

The last bit of the bike towards the glacier is quite the grunt, and is an unmaintained part of the trail, but there’s enough traffic during the summer months its quite apparent where the trail is. While I couldn’t directly walk to Stanley Glacier I did get fairly close however. I planted myself down on a big rock and ate lunch (homemade pizza from the night before), before venturing back to my car. On the way back I actually got to hike through the clouds, which was super cool and mysterious feeling. The hike took me just over 3 hours to complete.

2019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 72019-09-02 Stanley Glacier 8

Valley Of 5 Lakes & Bald Hills Hikes

Yesterday I completed two hikes in Jasper National Park; Valley of 5 Lakes & Bald Hills. I started my day off early at 6:30am by waking up and making a nutritious breakfast omelet and coffee before setting off on a 5 hour drive towards Jasper.

First stop was Valley of 5 Lakes, a short 4.5km hike with a mere 154 metres of elevation gain. The hike was amazing; it started through a moderate density forest and opened up into a meadow before going back into a forest with a view of five beautiful turquoise and emerald coloured lakes. The hike took roughly an hour to complete and was completely worth the visit.

2019-08-31 Valley Of 5 Lakes 12019-08-31 Valley Of 5 Lakes 22019-08-31 Valley Of 5 Lakes 32019-08-31 Valley Of 5 Lakes 5

It was nearly lunch so it was time to head into Jasper. I stopped at my favorite place; Jasper Brewing Company and had a cheddar burger with poutine, and a pint of their Rockhopper IPA, which is super tasty.

After lunch I drove to Maligne Lake, where I started on the trailhead to Bald Hills. It was a light misty rain when I started the hike, but over the course of the hike it started to rain more and more. About 1/3 of the way through the hike I met a wonderful woman named Susan, and her husband Steve. They had one of their daughters, and daughters friend with them. We spent the rest of the hike together, which made for a nice time. One of the kids made a hilarious comment when we were talking about religion. She said “Is a Protestant also a prostitute; we all burst out laughing! By the end of the hike we were all soaked. The hike was 13.2km with 701 metres of elevation gain; I definitely felt it in my quads towards the end.

2019-08-31 Bald Hills 12019-08-31 Bald Hills 22019-08-31 Bald Hills 3

After the hike I drove back into Jasper to fill up my Lexus with fuel, and get some coffee from Tim Horton’s before heading back to Calgary. I finally made it home around 10:30pm.

Lake Annette & Read’s Tower Hikes

Today I completed two hikes; Lake Annette & Read’s Tower. I woke up at 4:00am and had some eggs, brisket, and cheese for breakfast with some coffee and then set off at around 4:30am. I had to fill up with fuel on my way out of the city, but thankfully gas is only 95 cents/litre at the moment so it only cost me $23 for a partial fill.

My first stop was Lake Annette, which is near Lake Louise. The drive took about 2.25 hours. I arrived at 6:45am and got started on my hike. Lake Annette is rated as a moderate hike with 377 metres of elevation gain over 11.3km of distance. The hike took me just over 2 hours to complete. The hike spends the majority of the time in the woods, with a few spots of alpine meadows. I was the only one on the trail for the majority of the hike, except towards the end when I was nearly back at my car.

2019-08-30 Lake Annette 12019-08-30 Lake Annette 22019-08-30 Lake Annette 52019-08-30 Lake Annette 6

The next hike was Read’s Tower, which is in the Spray Lakes area near Canmore. The drive from Lake Louise took about 1.5 hours. There was only 3 other cars in the parking lot, so I knew the trail would be quiet. I made it about 2/3 of the way up the 6.8km trail with 855 metres of elevation gain before throwing in the towel. My shoes were not giving me any grip what so ever and I fell over a few times. It’s time for new hiking shoes since my tread is almost completely gone.

2019-08-30 Read Tower

C-Level Cirque, Wapta Falls, Takakkaw Falls, Emerald Lake, and Natural Bridge

On August 18th I went and explored Yoho National Park in British Columbia, and completed C-Level Cirque in Banff National Park.

I started the day early and left my place at 7:00am with a quick stop get to some coffee from McDonald’s. First stop was Natural Bridge, which was once a waterfall, but the softer rock that was below the hard limestone had eroded away until the rock widened enough for the water to flow under the outcrop, thus creating a natural bridge.

2019-08-18 Natural Bridge 3.jpg

A quick drive down the road had me emerging at Emerald Lake. It was full of tourists so I didn’t stay very long. Despite being full of tourists it was still a beautiful sight to see.

2019-08-18 Emerald Lake 12019-08-18 Emerald Lake 22019-08-18 Emerald Lake 4

The next stop was Wapta Falls, which you can get to from a quick 4.7km rountrip hike that has 126 metres of elevation gain. It took me about 1 hour round trip to complete. Wapta Falls is a waterfall of the Kicking Horse River, and is about 30 metres high and 150 metres wide. The waterfall averages 254 cubic metres of second of water flow.

2019-08-18 Wapta Falls 12019-08-18 Wapta Falls 22019-08-18 Wapta Falls 3

The next stop was Takakkaw Falls, which you can get to from an even quicker 1.4km rountrip walk (yes lets not even call it a hike), with only 36 metres of elevation gain. Takakkaw Falls stands at an impressive height of 373 metres tall, making it the second tallest waterfall in Canada. Takakkaw, a Cree word, translated to the word “wonderful” in English. The falls are fed by meltwater from the Daly Glacier, which is part of the Waputik Icefield.

2019-08-18 Takakkaw Falls 12019-08-18 Takakkaw Falls 2

The last and final stop was the C-Level Cirque hike in Banff National Park, about a 45 minute drive away. The hike is quite the huff at 9.2km with 755 metres of elevation gain. The hike mostly has you in the trees until you are greeted with an amazing view of Lake Minnewanka. At the beginning of the trail there is some old abandoned coal mine buildings and shafts. I was warned about a bear towards the end of the trail head but that didn’t deter me. I had my bear spray with me.

2019-08-18 C-Level Cirque 32019-08-18 C-Level Cirque 42019-08-18 C-Level Cirque 52019-08-18 C-Level Cirque 6

Willcox Pass Hike

A few weekends ago I had the wonderful opportunity to complete the Willcox Pass hike with my friend Ashley. We set off early in the morning with a quick stop at McDonald’s to fuel our bodies with coffee before continuing the 3.5 hour drive to the Willcox Pass trailhead.

Sticker time on the hike is about 3 hours but we took closer to 4 because we wanted to take our time and we ran into some people and got chatting. The hike is 9.5km return with 522m of elevation gain. At the end of the trail you are greeted with a beautiful view of Athabasca Glacier (aka Columbia Icefields)

2019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 12019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 22019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 32019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 42019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 52019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 62019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 72019-08-04 Wilcox Pass Hike 82019 iPhone Photos 1822019 iPhone Photos 183

After our hike we decided to go for some Montreal Smoked Meat poutine in Canmore at 514 Poutine, which is owned by a group of friends from Montreal. The clientele was mostly French speaking so we knew it was a good place. After our delicious dinner we drove back to Calgary. It was a 13 hour day all-in-all but an amazing one!

2019 iPhone Photos 1862019 iPhone Photos 1872019 iPhone Photos 185

Buller Pass Hike

On August 3rd 2019 my friend Carissa and I completed the Buller Pass hike in Spray Valley Provincial Park. It’s a 10.1km out & back style hike with 778 metres of elevation gain. The majority of the elevation gain is at the end, but the views are worth it. It took us about 6 hours to complete this amazing hike. The hike starts out in a heavily tree’d forest and eventually breaks through to some meadows before getting into some more burnt out tree’s from a forest fire from 2011/2012. After passing through those trees you come to the pass, which is about 250 metres of elevation gain, and it definitely makes you work for it. The loose shale makes it difficult to gain much traction. After reaching the peak you can see the beautiful view of Ribbon Lake below. We had some lunch at the top before turning back towards the car. I highly recommend this amazing hike!

2019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 012019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 022019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 042019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 052019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 062019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 072019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 082019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 092019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 102019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 112019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 122019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 132019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 142019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 152019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 162019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 172019-08-03 Buller Pass Hike 18

Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes

Last Monday I took the day off of work to drive through Jasper National Park to do some hiking and take in the sights. I decided the previous day on two hikes; Parker Ridge and Edith Cavell.

My first hike was Parker Ridge. Along the way I stopped at Herbert Lake and Bow Lake to take some photos.

2019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 022019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 04

Parker Ridge is an easy to moderate hike that took me only 1.25 hours return to complete. The hike is 5.1km with 269m of elevation gain hike. The hike starts with a quick jaunt through some trees, before emerging to a series of switchbacks, before transitioning to a beautiful meadow. The rest of the hike is a quick 5-10 minutes of walking in the meadows before being rewarded with the pristine views of the Saskatchewan Glacier. I took a bunch of photos of the spectacular view before heading back to the car.

2019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 062019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 072019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 082019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 092019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 102019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 11

It was then time to drive to Jasper for some lunch and a few beers before heading to my next hike; Edith Cavell. I settled on Jasper Brewing Company and had a delicious Ramen and a few India Pale Ale’s.

IMG_3312.JPG

After lunch it was about a 40 minute drive up a very windy road to the Edith Cavell trailhead. The hike is a moderate hike that took me about 2.25 hours return to complete. The hike is 6.1km with 409m of elevation gain. The hike starts with a slight incline to a view of the beautiful crystal clear blue lake, before heading up some strenuous switchbacks to the lookout points of the lake from above.

2019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 132019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 142019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 162019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 182019-07-29 Parker Ridge & Edith Cavell Hikes 19