Hello, it’s grapejenga again, unexpectedly hijacking the blog with things which are semi-related. No jungles or volcanoes this time unfortunately, but I do have mountains!
I’ve recently relocated from the sunny South Pacific to the somewhat less sunny, but still very beautiful locale of Central Alberta. Where I am normally is pretty drab – hills, grass, rocks, not a lot of trees. But my mother unexpectedly showed up last week so we went on a road trip to Banff!
Driving to Banff is very easy. You just go towards the mountains. It is very difficult to get lost. Here we are approaching Cochrane. You can see the mountains in the distance. We didn’t stop in Cochrane, but there were lots of statues of men on horses in the hills around it. Cochrane’s motto is: “The Way the West is Now”
There, now you can see the mountains. The rocky mountains are very big. When you think of mountains as a kid (assuming you haven’t grown up next to one) you think of a row of those grey triangles with snow on top, but mountains aren’t actually like that. At least, the Rockies aren’t like that.
You’re just ambling along the prairies and you can see the mountains in the distance. It starts getting a bit hilly. Then, WHAM! Giant impassable rock wall taller than three CN towers rears up right in front of you and stretches away in every direction. It really makes me respect the early explorers who saw that and decided to keep going, because it’s kind of intimidating.
Unless you’re a sheep. The sheep don’t seem intimidated at all.
This is Castle Mountain. It looks like a Castle! We weren’t supposed to see this, but Mom missed the turn off to Banff twice and we ended up driving to Lake Louise and this was along the way. It got really foggy and snowy and gross after taking this picture.
Luckily the grossness cleared up in time for us to see Lake Louise. It is ridiculously pretty. Because of the time this detour took we could only stay a few minutes, but it was a very beautiful few minutes during which we experienced snow, rain, sunshine, and then snow again.
There was also this bird that didn’t want me to take its picture. I have no idea what kind of bird it is, but I like taking pictures of random birds doing random things so for me this was the highlight of the trip (the beautiful panorama above was awesome too):
It would pose for my Mom though. Figures.
Anyway, after leaving Lake Louise we did eventually get to Banff. Since it was the off-season, all of the museums were closed. Since my mother’s new husband was feeling sick and I didn’t want to just abandon him in the car we couldn’t hike. Still, even from the car just driving around, Banff is very beautiful, and we did manage to get out a few times. Mostly to look at waterfalls:
This sign, warning people not to pet Elk (you know, because they’re dangerous wild animals) also made me laugh:
And that just about sums up my trip to Banff and Lake Louise. It started getting dark about then (and my camera died) so we went home.
Stay tuned for more delightful hijacking posts. I’ve got a few planned on dinosaur safaris, Head-Smashed-In-Buffalo Jump, and THE creepiest museum in Canada.