Our Canadian Rockies rule: never leave the trail head without rain gear, warm extra clothes, food and maybe a bear bell. The clouds gathered as we departed from Moraine Lake above Lake Louise on the Hi-line Trail. The thunder rolled and lightning cracked over our heads as we skittered over the rooty rocky trail downhill.
The storm stopped after forty minutes leaving us shivering and muddy. Even bears who might be relishing the berries along the trail were nowhere in sight. Back at the car we peeled off wet clothes, changed and headed for the Outpost Pub where we recovered with beef goulash, wild salmon and a glass of wine.
Friday we hit the road heading north from Lake Louise towards Jasper National Park. On the way we took a guided walk on the Athabasca Glacier which comes down from the Columbia Ice Field, a hugh mass of ice in the Canadian Rockies. Our guide Peter, a heli-ski guide/stand up comedian/alpinist, entertained us as he lead us 2 km up the glacier.
After a week or so with lots of rain we woke up to clear blue sky in Jasper National Park. Some clouds in the pm but no rain predicted until the end of the week. You can tell we’re not used to so much rain, but then we’re also car camping. It’s great to have dry clothes.
Taking advantage of the weather, we stopped to admire the Athabasca Falls en route to mountain bike the Valley of Five Lakes Trail.
Five Lakes trail rolled up and down alternately root and rock technical climbs then a swooping sweet ride downhill crossing meadows and along woodland lakes.
Sunset at 7:30 pm found us pedaling back to the trail head, tired but happy.
Not even seeing the Eiger quite prepared me for seeing the Edith Cavell Glacier, Angel and Ghost Glacier. It rivals the beauty of Switzerland—just add grizzlies and elk.