Jasper (3 days)
Aug 30, 2005
|Aug. 30 - Travel to Jasper
Sun was out today, but the temperature was still 9 degrees in the morning, must have warmed up to mid-teens by afternoon. Slow start, but we did a few errands and then headed out for the 350 kms to Jasper. After about 2 hours you can start to see the mountains. Hinton is just before the start of the mountains and the entrance to the Park. We purchased the National Parks pass for $109 as it is good until end of August next year. The daily rate for a family is $16, so we'll break-even with our planned 9 days between here and Banff.
We're staying at the Whistlers campground as we were hoping to get a full service campsite, but they were all full. One night dry camping and then we can get two nights with services. We saw a few elk as we entered the campground. It is their rutting season, so they warned us to stay away from the males. Hope to see some Big Horn sheep while we are here.
Aug 31 - Jasper
I headed out on my bike this morning to see a few of the local sites. Cruised thru the Whistlers and Wapiti campgrounds and headed up the highway over the Athabasca River to a trailhead. Went about 1 km into the trail to a meadow, but didn't have time to do the full trail loop to town, so just headed back to campground.
Kids had to try out the skateboard park and then we headed up the Jasper Tram for a panoramic view of the town and mountains. Jasper is actually shaped like a J, didn't know that. Pyramid mountain is the main dominating feature from town.
Headed up to Maligne Canyon. It's twice as deep and half as wide as the Lynn Valley Canyon back home. Quite amazing, the pictures don't do it justice. Off to the Jasper Park Lodge to see how the rich and famous live. Had a beer on the deck over looking the pool and lake. They also have a beautiful golf course. I think they plant them, but there were two Elk right on the roadside into the lodge.
Met a nice couple who were camped next door. They had two younger boys who got along great with our kids. John and Dodie both work in the Army on computer stuff. He has to head off to Afghanistan for 6 months soon. They just happen to live in St. Albert (in the 'O's for those that know the town).
The serviced sites in the campground don't have fireboxes, so we brought out the gas fire and had a good evening around the campfire.
Sept. 1 - Jasper
Woke up to 3 Elk walking thru the campground. Drove up to Mt. Edith Cavell in the morning. It's about 30 km south of Jasper. You end up in an old glacier valley at the foot of the mountain. It goes straight up 3,000 feet on two sides of you. There is a short 20 minute walk up to the glacier lake which has icebergs in it. Jackson went for a swim. There is also a large hanging glacier (Angel). Very beautiful spot.
Michelle has been keen to go horseback riding so we headed to the Pyramid Stables for a 1 hour trail ride in the afternoon. My horse was Bo, Jill had Tango, Michelle had Coco, and Connor had Badger. Connor was a bit concerned at first, but we all had a great time.
The kids had another great evening playing with Josh and Ben next door and the adults shared their stories of the day.