Sunday, November 5, 2017

Tunnel Mountain and Lake Louise

I kept waking between 3:30-4:30am and was unable to fall back asleep which meant that by 7:30pm every night I was toast. 

Louise woke in a panic and tore into the shower thinking it was 8:30am when really her cell phone clock hadn’t adjusted to the two hour time difference.

The temperature outside was -17 degrees. Yikes.

The day started with a drive around Tunnel mountain which included checking out the stunning views from the Banff Centre for Performing arts and the beautiful vistas near the hoo doos. I was excited to see a lone bald eagle riding the air currents above the valley.

A stop back at our condo was required to get extra clothing before taking a 45 minute drive to Lake Louise.

We first checked out Lake Louise ski area which was busy with last minute preparations before season opening. Mount Norquay had already opened on Friday; being the first ski hill in Canada to open for the winter.

Being a Saturday, Lake Louise and it’s Chateau were busy but we still found a parking spot. Fluffy magpies kept a watchful eye in the lot for tourists willing to share food.

I noticed new signs all around the hotel stating that only guests of the hotel or restaurants were allowed on the premises. 

We did take a brief walk through the hotel before hiking around the lake. I was glad for my rubber cleats which I’d attached to the bottom of my boots.

The Lake was like a sheet of glass with bits around the edges showing signs of freezing. These frozen areas increased the closer we got to the back of the lake where running water, frozen mid stream adorned a small section of the mountainside.

A lonely snowman was the sole inhabitant at the end of the lake.

It was overcast so although we could see the tops of the mountains, the lake didn’t show off the brilliant turquoise colour as it would  on a sunny day. Nevertheless it was still gorgeous.

The whole lakeside hike was just under 5 km.

After warming up with frothy hot chocolates at the Chateau Lake Louise cafe, we took the quieter Bow Valley Parkway back to Banff; breath taking views at every turn.

We stopped in Banff just in time to catch the tail end of the Art Gallery Hop...which included $1 glasses of wine and lots of appetizers. After a visit to the old fashioned candy store and a few shops, we headed back to the condo for supper in front of our fireplace and an early night.

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