Donnerstag, 28. Juni 2012

Icefields Parkway and change of plans

June 27: After five days we are fed up with cold, rain and fog. And the weather forecast for the next days is hardly better. And actually after Custer, Yellowstone, Glacier and Banff we have seen enough mountains. So we change our travel plans and quit Jasper and the route via Wells Grey Provincial Park.

We read about it before, and a Canadian neighbour in Banff tells a lot of positive things about it. We want to go to the Okanagan Valley, that southeast of us leads to the US border and sometimes is called the Canadian Tessin.

But of course we drive the Icefields Parkway from Lake Louise nortbound. Overnight the steady rain ended, and at 4 degrees C (40 F) we start at 7 am. Unfortunately the weather gets worse again behind Lake Louise, thick clouds and repeatedly drizzle. At Peyto Lake we walk from the parking lot ten minutes through snow residues to the terrific view point.

Peyto Lake

Afterwards, too, it is always worthwhile (despite the weather) to stop at halts and view points. 


The Columbia Icefield is the main attraction of the route. Opposite the visitor center a road leads to a small parking lot, from where we can climb up to the edge of the glacier. The thermometer shows 5 degrees C (42 F), but the icy breeze is considerably colder. 

Columbia Icefield

Along the side a road open only for buses leads a few hundred yards further up, from where the big red special buses take the tourists a little further on the glacier and let them step out for a short time ($50). We can easily pass on that. Generally we find other spots along the Icefields Parkway more attractive than this one. Maybe that is due to the weather.

We return to Lake Louise; on the way we stop several times, as from this side a lot of things look different. 

We even climb to the Peyto Lake view point once again. In Lake Louise we turn and take the Trans Canadian Highway westbound.

In the afternoon we end up on a very nice small campground on the water in Revelstoke (Williamson Lake campground). The sun is shining, and at 20 degrees C (68 F) we are sitting outside !!!

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