Banff, Jasper, Icefields Parkway, Alaskan Highway
Trip Start Jun 06, 2012
14Trip End Aug 10, 2012
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One of our first adventures was a walk to go visit the “Hoodoos”, which are unusual, jagged, spire-like mountain formations. From that vantage point, we were able to see Randle Mountain, and several others in the area. Many of them are still snow-capped at this time of year. For those of you who have visited the area, you’re familiar with the Bow River Parkway, which runs adjacent to Highway 1. The locals recommend that you drive on the Parkway, because it’s less traveled and wildlife is abundant. We can attest to that, because almost immediately we saw some bighorn sheep, and then a huge elk with a giant rack. You can always tell when wildlife is near the road because cars and campers pull over for pictures
The last day of our trip in the area was spent visiting Lake Louise and Lake Moraine. These alpine lakes are fed by glaciers and they are crystal clear. The aqua water actually reminded me of the Caribbean. Lake Louise is without question the most beautiful lake I’ve ever seen. Picture this: snow-capped mountains on all sides, with a glacier framing the back of the lake, the bluest sky you’ve ever seen, dark green pine trees framing bright, clear aqua waters. Sublime. Our pictures don’t do it justice, but we tried. Moraine Lake, about 10 miles away, is similar, but wilder, with several sharp mountain peaks surrounding it. To top off our great week, we traveled up the Icefields Parkway, which, according to the brochure, is “the most beautiful road in the world.” I’d have a hard time arguing with that. We drove through some of the highest peaks in the Canadian Rockies, most of them snow-capped at that elevation, and numerous icefields and glaciers, the biggest of which is the Columbia Icefield, with its Athabasca Glacier, that you can walk on if you’re so inclined
The last several days have been mostly travel days. We’re excited that we can finally use the Alaskan “Milepost” guidebook which starts around the area that we ended up in last night – Dawson Creek, British Columbia – Mile Zero of the Alaskan Highway! I was excited to hear that, until I realized that we still have about two day’s worth of traveling before we actually get to the Alaska state line – but hey, we’re getting there!
We met a great group of people that are going to be traveling together caravan-style throughout Alaska when we stayed at the “Northern Lights Campground” in Dawson Creek last night. It’s fun to share stories and adventures with people from all over the place.
We took off from Dawson Creek around noon today, and have traveled as far as Summit Mountain, British Columbia – about a 350-mile drive. We saw our first bear today! Three black bears, one at a time, right along the highway. Fun. We’ve just stopped for the night. We’ve pulled off the road near a little lake at the bottom of the mountain. There is one other camper parked here, but their lights are off for the night
Love, The Hamberg’s
P.S. Update: It is now the next day, and we're getting there. Watson Lake is about 300 miles from Whitehorse, which is just a hop, skip and a jump to the Alaska border. We'll be there sometime tomorrow! Enjoy all the pictures below....