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Thursday, 29 October 2009

Round Banff and up to Lake Louise

Saturday 10 Oct.09  (This episode I actually wrote up at the time!)

sulphur mountain 002 There wasn’t a bus to Lake Louise till 3.00p.m. today, so I booked a ticket and then spent the morning looking around Banff.  I wanted to see the rock formations called the Hoodoos, but couldn’t get there by the local bus service.   CIMG3309It would have been a long walk to get to them so I gave that idea up.

 

 

   CIMG3315Instead I walked around looking at the old trading post shop, and took yet more pictures of the views from alongside the river which was already icing up!

 

CIMG3299 I had lunch at Evelyn’s coffee house – well I had to, didn’t I!  There are three branches in Banff – Evelyn’s, Evelyn’s too, and Evelyn’s again.  Nice food!

Finally the bus came to pick me up at the hotel, and we were offCIMG3327  – over the

railway lines - up the road to the village of Lake Louise, mountain views on route, and widening of the road going on in parts along the way.  I was dropped at the Lake Louise Inn where a foreign – even to Canada – girl tried to do the check-in!  What a muddle!   Then I found there was no elevator to Floor two of the quite modern accommodation wings.  No elevator either to the only restaurant they had open tonight, on the second floor – well, first floor to us in UK .  I finally got a room on the ground floor, but there was a nasty step and threshold to manoeuvre my suitcase-on-wheels over. It’s getting heavier every minute I think!

I found that the village is actually about 6 miles from the actual lake Louise, and there are no buses.  The only option if you haven’t a car is to get a taxi, so I did!   They must do really good business!  It took me to the Fairmont Hotel, another chateau-like hotel a bit like the one at Banff and the Empress at Victoria.  I took a look around the ground floor later!  A bit grand!

CIMG3344 Anyway my first impression of the lake was a bit disappointing!  I had expected it to be larger, with a glacier at the far end.  The glacier wasn’t that obvious and the lake quite small.  I’d been led to believe the view was perfectly stunning, and the water a beautiful aqua green because of the sediment from the glacier.  Well, the view was nice, but the water wasn’t that green, probably because the sun was in the wrong direction.    

sulphur mountain 009 However I found there was a nice easy walking track through the snow along the lakeside which I took, hoping for better things. 

 

 

sulphur mountain 005Well,  it was a lovely walk and further round the green colour did start to show; the mountains were pretty high with a drizzling of snow on them, and the trees and forest quite attractive.

sulphur mountain 016   I did take a lot of photos, trying to be “artistic”, and some were not so bad!  It was about  about a mile and a half to the point where the path began to go uphill, and I decided then that it was time to turn back. 

sulphur mountain 004 Besides it was round about 7 o’clock so it would be getting dark by the time I got back to the Chateau (That’s it in the distance, between the trees).

 

sulphur mountain 011The sun was shining on the mountain tops, but the light was already beginning to go when I started back, so I had to be quick.

 

 

 

 

sulphur mountain 027 Before getting the taxi back to the Inn/motel, as I said before, I took a look around inside the Chateau.   It looked very grand, not unlike the Banff Fairmont!

There was an art gallery amongst the shops that sold rather exclusive stuff, and it had some beautiful paintings and sculptures.  sulphur mountain 024 I quite fell for one painting, an impressionist view of the far end of the lake, in winter when the lake was frozen and the mountains covered with snow, but at something like $800  it had to stay where it was.  I must look up the artist on the net……….  no, couldn’t find him or her!  Shame!  He/She has a beautiful style, and with the name Cameron, must have Scottish roots!

I managed the climb up the stairs back at the Inn/Motel with difficulty – can walk on the flat quite well but stairs are the killer on my hips just now – to the restaurant, basically a pizza/pasta choice!  I ate almost all my spag bog with garlic bread, but couldn’t have managed the tiramisu or berry crumble that I quite fancied for afters!

So here I am in my room, writing up the day’s events.  I should have disciplined myself into doing that at least, each night even if the photos weren’t edited and ready to insert!  That’s why I’ve fallen behind in giving you the news.

So, all for today.  Talk again soon.

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