In this two-part episode we head up to Canada to take Jasper National Park by storm! In this episode we detail the first half of our week trip exploring Jasper and Kootenay National Parks. We share our adventures hiking, exploring the gorgeous lakes, seeing bears, dipping in the hot springs, trekking on a glacier, and stopping along the Icefields Parkway. Since it’s so close we also ventured into British Columbia to see a few sights in nearby Kootenay and it did not disappoint!
Make sure to listen to part 2 of this episode where we head to Banff National Park and if you want to take this same exact trip, we have a 7 Day Banff National Park Travel Guide itinerary for you to download!
Jasper National Park – Episode Transcript
Welcome to this week’s episode of the Travel Squad Podcast. Today we are giving you a twofer heading up to Jasper, Banff, Kootenay and Yoho, national Parks in Canada.
Yeah, so we’re breaking this episode up into two sections this week. We’re gonna launch the first half of it next week we’re gonna launch the second half, but I’m so excited to talk to you all about this. This has been one of my favorite trip. I am a sucker for nature trips and the Canadian Rockies really exceeded my expectations by far. We packed so many things in in the eight days that Jamal and I were there. Kim was there for about six days and I just can’t wait to die right in and share everything with you guys. This
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Is why I love the podcast. I learn new things about my wife. We come back from this trip and she didn’t even tell me this is one of her favorites. I’m learning something new as we are recording this. That’s not to say that this trip wasn’t epic because it was. If you have not been to these national Parks in the Canadian Rockies, in the provinces right on the border of British, Columbia and Alberta, you’re doing yourself a disservice. So, so beautiful. You have to go and do it. But wow, Brittany, you didn’t tell me like one of your favorites that you we’ve been on. Wow, I’m impressed. It was highly impressive to me just as well. Loved it, loved it, loved it. And I’m really excited to dive right into this ’cause I think there’s gonna be lots of useful information because we know Banff is one of those hotspots and even though Banff is that hotspot National Park, like Kim said earlier, there’s three other national Parks that touch in this vicinity.
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So if you’re gonna go, you might as well do ’em all. ’cause each one of them has something a little bit unique that the other does not. But really comprehensive Canadian Rockies experience. And
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I feel like a lot of the articles that I read, the TikTok videos that I watched, they would be specific to either Jasper or Columbia Icefields or Banff, but it never really said, there’s all these Parks around. So if you’re spending a week here, do this. So we’re gonna give you the itinerary, how we did it and how we’d recommend doing it. Not just Banff, but everything around there because it’s all amazing. So
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We are gonna dive right into the tip section. And the first tip I have for you is something we learned while we were on the trip and that is in Alberta, which is a providence in Canada, they do not sell alcohol in grocery stores or gas stations or convenience stores. You actually have to buy it from a liquor store.
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Good little tip to know if that is your thing. Of course, you know, we always bring our collapsible cooler. We have rooms that had refrigerators in them after a big hike. It’s always nice to have a refreshing cold one, at least in our opinion. It is our thing, not that we’re raging alcoholics over here or anything like that, but a good tip to know on that if that is something that you’re looking for. Also, you can buy your park pass per person or for group using what Canada’s national park system calls their discovery pass, which is a little bit different than here in the US and that was a learning curve for us, right? You know, if you’re going to a national park, you either have your national park pass for the year and everybody who’s in your car pretty much gets in.
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Or if you’re buying it, I don’t wanna say for the day, usually it’s you know, two or three days, but it’s per vehicle. So this is a little bit different. In Canada, they do do it per person or you have to actually buy it as a group
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And you can buy that online or in person. But because we were going to have some early mornings, you know, easy days over here, we decided to buy ours online and have it mailed to us in advance so that we didn’t have to worry about if the stations were gonna be open or not. And that actually did work in our favor. And
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Up here in the Canadian Rockies they do have bears and more specifically grizzly bears. Now, not to say that all bears aren’t dangerous, I mean we’ve talked before about how I feel about black bears. You know, I’m not really too intimidated by ’em, but a grizzly, you know, you, you don’t wanna mess with something like that. So you’re gonna wanna have bear spray to rent or buy now pretty much everywhere you go you’ll be able to find it. They do charge you an arm and a link for it. But Squad tip here for you in the tip section is ask your hotel if they have bear spray themselves to rent. Because a lot of times their rental price will be a lot cheaper than if you were to go to a sporting store, get it in the visitor centers of the National Park themselves or any other you know, store that could potentially be selling them.
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So do ask your hotel. That’s actually what we did and we ended up getting it without having to pay any money whatsoever. So we got a real solid on that. So do yourself a favor, ask your hotel if they have bear spray. Didn’t
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You also say that that hotel was giving Day park passes for free as well?
1 (5m 13s):
Yeah, I think that they were giving them for free. I don’t know if Jamal actually when he returned the baker spray confirmed that or not. But the guy was saying, oh, do you guys have your, your park passes? And I said, oh, we have the discovery pass for one, we’re here. And he was like, oh, okay. So I do think perhaps if it’s not for free, they at least sell it there, probably at the same rate so that you don’t have to like go to a visitor centers or a booth
2 (5m 35s):
Specifically. And they probably do have that because one thing I I learned too is you know, as you’re entering the national Parks, at least in this area, you’re off of Maine Canadian highways. So if you don’t have your national park pass, they will have the toll booths there. But they do have a bypass lane to where you don’t have to stop. So if you already have it, you can just hug that lane to the right and then just bypass and kind of go through. Because even though it is a highway, yeah you don’t need the pass to go into the national park, but if you actually stop at any place that has a parking lot that’s not a gas station to really fill along the way, you do need that. And then National Park Rangers will be checking. So you know you can get those park passes at the hotel potentially if
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You go in the shoulder season months. We love to travel in shoulder seasons because there’s usually less crowds. Just make sure to research when trails and roads open. There were some roads that still weren’t open yet in June that wouldn’t open until like the end of June or early July. And then some roads close in October. So just make sure that you are looking and researching in advance because if there is an attraction off of a main road, you may not be able to get to it if you’re traveling on shoulder months or in the winter.
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And then also in shoulder season, the weather can be a little unpredictable. So definitely bring those layers in Jasper, when we were there it was super hot and then as we made our way down to Banff, it got rainy. And I heard not too long ago since we came back, it actually snowed up in Jasper.
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Gosh, I can’t believe it snowed in Jasper because it was like deathly hot and that was the furthest north that we were at. And it’s just like counterintuitive. You know, the further north you should go, it should technically be cooler and it was like hot, kind of miserable. It cooled off at night. So that’s why we say have layers or if you’re starting early in the morning, but crazy that it snowed. But then when we got to Bamfield, right, it rained on us, it was a little bit cooler. Cooler in the mornings, the evenings cooled down a little bit quicker too. So address in layers potentially when you’re out on the trails. Some
1 (7m 24s):
Of my favorite tips, and I always say this, is to download offline maps. We use Google Maps sometimes you’re not gonna have data service. We were in remote areas, so having the offline maps downloaded in advance was super helpful. And then same for all trails. I have the All Trails Pro, they may have changed it to all Trails Plus, but it’s a paid subscription to all trails. I can download all of the Hikes that I planned to do while we were there. You can actually categorize it by location. So like I have a list going for Oregon, a list going for the Canadian Rockies, I have a list going for the Redwoods for example. And you can save the Hikes that you plan to do into that folder and download them. And so then you can access them offline to make sure you’re on the trail and not getting lost.
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And this was really helpful for us while we were out there in Banff and Jasper.
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One of my favorite tips and our last tip here is to bring your bug spray. Banff definitely has mosquitoes and there were some trails that we went on where you really needed, it
2 (8m 20s):
Really shocked me about this. I guess, you know, Brittany knew it, you knew it, you guys brought bug spray. But it’s one of those things where I say this all the time, maybe not for you anymore Kim. ’cause you’re in Texas, that’s bug central sometimes. So you’re used to the bugs now. But we’re really spoiled here in San Diego. I don’t really feel like there’s mosquitoes or lots of bugs and I always forget when I go to new places that they’re there, but really wasn’t suspecting it to be up in the mountains, but there sure was. So you do want to have that bug spray.
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So we’re gonna dive right into the episode. We left on a Tuesday. Jamal and I, we flew into Calgary from San Diego and we landed at about 7:40 PM So that night all we did was really kind of get the essentials. We went to a grocery store, we got water, we got some snacks for the road, some apples, bananas, things like that. And then we drove to our hotel. We actually stayed in the town of Canmore, which is about 15 minutes south of Banff and we stayed there because it was a lot cheaper to stay there than actually in Banff. So that’s what we did and we just checked in, stayed the night and then the next morning we had an early morning
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And Canmore is about an hour, 15 hour, 20 minutes away from Calgary. What’s really unique about Calgary is in this area of Alberta that’s literally like flat plains farmland, but it’s right on the edge of the Canadian Rockies. So Canmore was already up in the mountains in the Rockies, so we got to that point there, but when you land it’s gonna be flat. But that drive, we’re working our way into the mountains and like Brittany said, 15 minutes away, truly really from the entrance of Banff and Banff National Parks
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The next morning Kim actually started her journey towards us. She left from Austin and then she landed in Calgary right like midday 1140 and then Kim ended up popping on a bus that took her to Jasper. So she was on her way to meet us. Jamal and I were leaving Canmore and driving all the way up to Jasper that evening.
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That bus is called the Brewster Express and it’s a fantastic option if you don’t wanna rent a car or you just kind of wanna go to a destination and not move around a whole bunch. They have a bunch of different legs, not just Calgary to Jasper, but you can go to Banff Lake Louise, they even have more sightseeing tours where they’ll take you to the different Lakes. We did stop a little bit on that trip ’cause it was an eight hour bus ride and so you got to like get out and take pictures a little bit, maybe get a snack if you wanted. So I would highly recommend the bus.
2 (15m 2s):
Well as you were on your bus experience and in the little spots where we ended up having data and wifi service, we were keeping track of things that you posted and they made tons of stops along the way. I mean it took you about what you said, eight hours to get from Calgary to Banff to finally meet up with us. But that’s not how long it takes for the drive, it’s just because you had all those stops. So like you said, a really good opportunity if you don’t wanna rent a car, kind of stay in one spot but it will take you to places along the way. So while Kim was having her travel day, Brittany and I woke up here on this day Wednesday early in the morning and the plan was make a few stops along the way from Canmore through Banff all the way up to Jasper, do our things that we wanted to do in Jasper and then meet up with Kim where the bus dropped her off and then just kind of meet up for our Squad adventures.
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So this whole day here Wednesday, you know unfortunately Kim was not by our side at this point in time, but the reunion was coming its way. Yeah.
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And I had been watching the weather and leading up to it it looked like things were gonna be really sunny. But as we got closer to the trip it was like oh some of our trip’s gonna be pretty sunny but then it was gonna drop and be a little rainy. So because it was really nice outside, we decided to make a pit stop at Lake Louise, which we weren’t anticipating making and we were really glad we did because when you go early in the morning the water’s calm, there’s not a lot of wind and the sun was out and it was shining. So it made the lake look really pretty. Lake Louise is more of like, I would say like a green lake, not as blue, like more green, somewhat gray, but has really beautiful waters. It’s a Glacier Fed Lake and there’s all of these peaks around it and it’s right next to the Fairmont Hotel, which obviously is a really nice hotel.
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They have a canoe dock there so in the summer you can canoe and apparently in the winter the lake turns into an ice skating rink on the frozen lake. So although we didn’t get to experience that, that’d be a really cool adventure to do in the winter. So parking is limited here so just keep that in mind And you do have to pay to park here as well on top of having the national park path.
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Right. And so like Brittany was saying, lake Louise here was kind of an impromptu stop. We were gonna be coming to Lake Louise later on the tour itself. Now Lake Louise is quite honestly one of the top two most famous Lakes in Banff National Park. I would say maybe the other one is gonna be Lake Moraine. Now if you drove straight from Canmore, which we would recommend, you know if you’re getting in late, flying in, doing this trip as we are starting in Jasper working your way back down south, it’s three and a half hours with no stops. But of course we took longer ’cause we had stops along the way so that Lake Louise was impromptu because the weather was good as Brittany was saying and we’re just like, well let’s go check it out. It’s very famous for the when the waters are still, it isn’t that like crystal clear blue but still a strong, you know, blue in those colors.
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Brittany was saying but it was so flat that it really reflects everything of the mountain scenery that you have of that Glacier in the back snow cap mountains onto the lake makes it very scenic. And so if you happen to be at Lake Louise when the weather is right, pristine condition
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From there we went into a lake called Bow Lake and we were there, we weren’t there for that long but what was really cool about it was no one was in the parking lot. And then when we got to the lake, there was literally no one else at the lake. It was one of the Lakes we got to ourselves. And this didn’t happen just once along the trip we had several Lakes where we had them to ourselves and it was just really nice because you have these really amazing landscape Lakes mountains surrounding you and you just have the destination to yourself and you’re not sharing and you just get to like take that in for a moment. So that was really nice. There was also like a wooden bridge leading up to the lake. So it just gives like a really good spot for pictures and there’s like a building with some with a little cafe as well. But that was great. And then we went from there to Pedo Lake and this was probably one of the prettiest Lakes that we saw in Banff National Park.
2 (18m 47s):
Yeah, Pato Lake was really, really beautiful. And it’s one of those things where, you know, we’ve already mentioned three Lakes here, lake Louise, bow Lake, Pato Lake, and you’re like, well how many Lakes can you see? And each one is just as beautiful different colors and shades of the water, different sceneries of the mountains in the background. So it really was one of those things where when I looked at the itinerary that Brittany had made where we’re gonna stop and just like how many more of these you know, but they all did not fail to impress. And what I really liked about Pato Lake is I think it had the best color of blue that we really did. See now when you get here you can actually park at the lower parking lot at the turn-in and it’s a 0.8 mile round trip hike to go kind of uphill to this overlook platform or you know, I’m gonna throw this out there.
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You could choose or choose not to do this. You can avoid the hike and park at a parking lot that’s really close to the overlook itself. It’s really only designated for handicap or bus. But there are some areas if you’re not parking in the handicap or the bus where you can kind of like squeeze in. And we did not do this when Brittany and I did it but we’re gonna talk about it a little bit later where when we came back and told Kim how cool this lake was, we ended up doing that ’cause it was just for a quick little overlook. But Pato Lake was absolutely beautiful and stunning.
1 (20m 4s):
Yeah when you get to the top there is a wooden boardwalk and you kind of get to overlook the whole area. And this is a longer lake. The lake is literally bright blue, turquoise blue. So beautiful. I also did read after the fact though that you can go past it and there’s another overlook with no boardwalk but also like no people. So that’s a tip for you guys as well.
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Now Kim, before we kind of get on on our stops that we made along the way up to Jasper, just tell us a few of the stops that you actually made on the bus ride yourself. We
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Did stop in Lake Louise and I almost got left in the bus because it was supposed to be really quick. But I jammed back there to get the picture and jammed back. We stopped at the Athabasca Glacier, we stopped at the iconic gas station.
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The iconic gas station, which I’m glad you kind of mentioned. We’re gonna touch upon it too. There’s really only one gas station at some point from Banff up until Jasper and that’s the one and you’re gonna wanna fill gas there. But we’ll touch upon that later iconic gas station by the way.
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And it also did stop in Banff where we had like a 30 minute layover. So I got to do a little nature trail and get some pictures.
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And you’re talking about the town of Banff, not necessarily the national park. Correct, yeah and that was a cute little quaint town. We did not stop there. It was only about 15 minutes north of Canmore where we had actually stayed. But the entire time, and we didn’t mention this quite yet, but honorary Squad member Charlotte joined us on this trip too. She came a day later after you got there Kim and her bus ended up stopping in the town of Banff. And until we had gotten there at that point working our way back down south as a Squad and group together, you two were just like raving about how like cute and quaint that town was and when we were there I loved it just as well. So really cool spot to stay also in the town of Banff itself. So
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While we were driving up on the Icefields, Parkway, Jamal and I did come across a bear, there was two motorcyclists in front of us and we saw Jamal saw one of them point to the side and I kind of opened my eyes at the same time ’cause I was rusting and I was like, oh bear. So Jamal pulls off to the side, the bear crosses the street right behind us. The, well it’s not even a street, it’s a highway right behind us coming along the side of the road was a bicyclist and he ends up stopping and the bear like looks at him, they have like this little standoff and the bear’s like, all right, I just want my food. So he just kind of goes into like the little ditch beside the road. But while he was in the little ditch, you just really see like how camouflaged they are.
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Like you would think that with the colorations they’d be easy to spot but they’re really not. They’re really good hiders and camouflages so you gotta get lucky to see one.
2 (22m 35s):
Yeah. So I mean we were driving, the bear was on the opposite side of the road. We stopped on the side of the road, pulled over to the shoulder, it crossed and luckily in that little ditch area, you know the bear started feeding and walking along by us. So we were no more than 10 feet away from the bear as it was just kind of grazing in our car. Yeah, well we were in our car, we didn’t get out yes of course, but just 10 feet away from us and we were watching it graze, eat for food, et cetera. And we were doing that for maybe about, you know, 15, 20 minutes, which was really exciting. It was a black bear. We were hoping to see a grizzly bear. I’ll give you guys a spoiler, we didn’t see any other bears on this trip but you mentioned Brittany, the that’s not true. What other bears did we see?
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You didn’t see any other bears?
2 (23m 17s):
Oh well you did. That’s right.
0 (23m 18s):
But on my bus ride I was just gazing out the window as we were approaching the Jasper train station and there was a black bear rummaging around on the train tracks.
2 (23m 28s):
And that’s actually a really good thing to mention. I forgot that you had actually saw one Kim, so thank you for throwing that in there. But somebody when we were in Jasper and one of the shops said a mama bear and her cubs, they were grizzlies a week ago. Were actually on the train tracks as well and it’s very common for bears. I don’t know why to just kind of hover around the train tracks. They seem to like it and get close to town so you never know when you’re gonna see them. But also at the same time they can be very elusive. But Brittany mentioned the Icefield Parkway, it’s called that because once you get out of Banff in that area into Jasper National Park, there are famous, famous glaciers that you can go ahead and visit walk on, which we did.
2 (24m 11s):
We’ll talk about that later in this episode. But that’s why it’s called the Icefields Parkway ’cause this area a little bit more north, that’s where you really just start see a lot more glaciers than you will see in Banff. Even though there are some in Banff.
1 (24m 24s):
So from Pato Lake and the bear siding, Jamal and I went to a waterfall, it was called Sun Wata Falls and it was a two mile trail. There’s an upper fall and a lower fall to see the upper falls. If that’s all you have time to do, all you have to do is get out from the parking lot, go down the trail, just 0.1 of a mile and there it is right there in front of you and you really just get to see like how impressive waterfalls, how much pressure they have, like how crazy water is. It’s really beautiful site. There was a bridge that you could stand on to and look down over it. I always look like looking at waterfalls and I asked Jamal like do you think if you fell down this one you could survive this? You know, just like outta curiosity, he’s like, I don’t know, like we don’t know what it looks like coming out on the other side.
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Would you think Jamal would, would you be able to survive this one?
2 (25m 10s):
Oh go. I don’t know. I guess it depends on what time of year it was and how fast that water is flowing. But it goes back to the point of what you’re saying, I don’t think any one of these are necessarily guaranteed death, but any one of these can absolutely kill you. You know, it just really depends on the day and how fast it’s flowing, what rock that individual person may or may not hit or ricochet off of. So you know, water is one of those things in nature that you really need to respect and you can really appreciate it when you see waterfalls. And so you said if we just saw the upper one, we continued on. That trail wasn’t very hard. What was it? About two miles. So round trip. One round trip, right. So an additional mile to get to the lower falls and if you have time you can do it.
2 (25m 51s):
The lower falls I didn’t think were that really impressive. So if you’re on a time crunch you can just get away with the upper and it’s a good stop as you’re driving up more into the town of Jasper and concentrated area of Jasper National Park.
1 (26m 4s):
And then from there we also went to another waterfall called at the basketball. This one wasn’t as long as a trail, it was about 0.6 miles. And also just really beautiful waterfall. I love to see all of the different colors of blue. Like every lake was a different color, different shade had something different to offer. This one did rush down into a canyon and there was a few different lookout points that we were able to go to. And then we were also able to go down some stairs and you were able to see kind of where like the waterfall ends and comes out of the canyon and into the river. And really just beautiful landscape backdrop. We spent some time here taking pictures if you’ve ever been to Cuyahoga National Park, there’s like, they’re famous for the the rock ledges.
1 (26m 47s):
And as the water exited the canyon, the rock formations there kind of ri reminded me of that same thing like the ledges rock but really beautiful. And from this waterfall in particular, there is a three-way continental divide in this area. And the water flows to the Atlantic, the Pacific and the arctic oceans, which was pretty cool to learn
2 (27m 10s):
About. Yes. And the water from Athabasca falls to itself actually leads to the Arctic. And so you actually told that to us Kim when you arrived because again it was kind of that bus ride with a little bit of tour. And as you passed the Glacier, which we’re gonna touch upon a little bit later, they said this mountain point is really kind of like the three-way. And I didn’t really know that. And so when you shared that, that was interesting information. But at the same time when we were reading the information at the Basco Falls, it did say that this actually leads to the Arctic Ocean. But I didn’t make that kind of thought process of like, oh well where does it split? Like Atlantic Pacific, Arctic. So only place on earth where you have kind of three oceans of the continental divide where it will dump into.
2 (27m 54s):
1 (27m 54s):
During this time too, we had gone by the gas station, there is only one gas station between Bam and Jasper and so you’re gonna wanna fill up, it’s a little bit of a higher price there because they’re literally the only gas station out in the middle of nowhere. And they have a restaurant in there, they have like a chili bar, they have snacks, things to get, but everything was overpriced. So we didn’t get anything there other than bathroom break and gas. But from here we went to, we made it to Jasper, we ended up going to a lake called Pyramid Lake. There were at least three different beaches, I think maybe even four different beaches around the lake. We stopped at the main one. It was pretty big.
1 (28m 34s):
There were picnic tables, people were paddle boarding, there were people on the water getting in along the edge. We brought our picnic blanket. So we laid out for a picnic, ate some snacks that we had brought and we were kind of just waiting for Kim to get into town and we were waiting for her to come in. And so we were killing some time, well killing
2 (28m 51s):
Some time because we were gonna do a possible hike and that was gonna be the Edith Cavel hike. Now going back to what Brittany was saying in the tips check, you know kind of if you’re in shoulder season, sometimes things don’t open et cetera. And so the main highway that this hike is off of is open. But the road leading from that main highway to the hike was not, it was gonna open in what like another five, six days later. And so the information on the National Park website really wasn’t clear but of course we confirmed that information with other people when we were there. So we weren’t able to do that one. It’s ranked really as one of the nicest Hikes that you can do in Jasper. So if you happen to go during the time that this trail is open and the pa the road to it is go do the Edith Caval hike, let us know how it was, we’re gonna be jealous of you ’cause we really wanted to do that.
2 (29m 40s):
But like you said, killing time until Kim actually did arrive. And so then we just, after Pyramid Lake explored downtown Jasper, cute little quaint town, really enjoyed it a lot. Brittany and I stopped at the Jasper Brewing Company for a few beers while we were killing that time for you to arrive Kim. Yeah.
1 (29m 59s):
And then we just walked the town, it was really cute. Checked out a few stops shops, went to get a few souvenirs, had some brew and then we were like, well what else can we fit in by before Kim gets here? Kim was not everyone arriving till about eight 30. So we decided to go to a hike called Valley of the Five Lakes. And surprise surprise, you actually do see five Lakes along this trail. Each one of them is really gorgeous. We ended up doing this hike twice ’cause Kim wanted to see it as well. And there are several different options, like you can make it a longer hike if you go around the entire first lake. The way that we did it was a three mile hike. You got to see like the edge of lake one and then you got to really see the overlook of 2, 3, 4 and then stop at five to get on a dock, which was really nice.
1 (30m 44s):
So we were kind of booking it while we were doing this hike but still really enjoyed it. And we were a few minutes late picking up Kim, but when Kim got there she was, her legs were up around a campfire. She was just chilling, having a great time and we picked her up at that point.
2 (31m 1s):
Yeah, and I just wanna say the main reason why we did Valley of the Five Lakes minus killing time was because this hike and area is known to actually have good chances of bears sightings. And we wanted to see some grizzlies. I mean we’re there, the grizzlies are in this area. So we did this specifically, unfortunately we did not see it but we made it to, Kim picked you up from that hotel where they dropped you off on the bus ride. And then unfortunately for Kim, you know you had a little bit more of a car ride after that too because we did not stay in Jasper that night because to stay in Jasper is so, so expensive. We chose the option of staying maybe about 45 minutes more north in the town of Hinton and a lot more affordable.
2 (31m 48s):
And our hotel that we were at fricking awesome, we had like a suite not purposefully for any you know reason. It wasn’t like oh we’re splurging just normal price. $131 per night had a living room area with a kitchen, two separate rooms. It was fantastic. So if you’re looking to save money and willing to invest a little bit of a drive, we would highly recommend staying in the town of Hinton a little bit north outside of Jasper.
0 (32m 12s):
And that was the B C M I in for everyone that wants to stay there.
1 (32m 17s):
So Kim, why don’t you start us off with what we did the next full day that we had together.
0 (32m 21s):
We started our day like we love to do with a breakfast buffet. Heck
1 (32m 26s):
0 (32m 27s):
And then we got our things together, we got in the car, we drove down and started on the malignant canyon hike. It was about 2.3 miles. It was super pretty. You’re literally walking through towering canyon walls with gushing water right below you and you look down and you almost like get a little dizzy ’cause it’s so deep down there. It was a really, really pretty nature walkabout.
2 (32m 50s):
Well not only that too, yes of course very pretty. We would highly recommend doing this trail. Absolutely. But the wildlife sightings started as soon as we got into the parking lot. I think it was a white-tailed deer, but it had really, really big antlers. It definitely was not an elk, but it was not the size of a normal deer either. So we’re still not for sure for sure on the species that it was, but it was just right in the parking lot. We gotta enjoy it walking by, you know, everybody who’s in the parking lot trying to do the same trail. And so even though we didn’t get to see more bears, unfortunately you will encounter wildlife and just, you know, really appreciate and respect it. Luckily we didn’t see anything stupid. Like you see the videos of people in Yellowstone going up to Bisons doing dumb shit.
2 (33m 35s):
No one came and messed with the the deer out here. So that was good. But you know, be mindful of your surrounding.
1 (33m 41s):
And a Moline canyon is one of the deepest canyons in the Canadian Rockies. It goes up to like 50 meters deep at certain points and there’s a lot of amazing photo opportunities. You cross a total, there’s actually six bridges we ended up crossing, I wanna say four. And they start right away. We crossed like bridge two, we ended up going to bridge five. But getting out of the canyon gives you a good hike. We thought it was another easy day getting back out of there. So just keep that in mind. You’re gonna get a little good workout even though it’s only 2.3 miles long.
2 (34m 14s):
And then from there we headed on to Medicine Lake. You know Medicine Lake is also known as the disappearing lake and it’s famous for its wildlife and unusual, occasional habit of draining into underground sinkholes during the winter and disappearing. So that’s why it’s known as the disappearing lake. And water depths can vary as much as you know, 20 meters throughout the year. And so the Native Indians, which in Canada they actually called First Nations individuals, they believed that the disappearance of the lake was caused by the big medicine or magic in their language and they really feared it. And that’s kind of how it’s gotten its name Medicine Lake. Isn’t this where they had part of the trail blocked off because they had the bald eagles nesting at that point in time?
2 (34m 58s):
1 (34m 58s):
That’s the one. And from this lake we went to another lake, we went to the malignant lake and this is the largest natural lake in the Canadian Rockies. It has a ring of snow and ice cap mountains. It’s a really, really long 22 kilometers long. It stretches past an island called Spirit Island. You actually have options to do a boat tour here. We were highly considering it. You can see tons of wildlife while you’re on board. But Kim thought this was gonna be a glass bottom boat and it was not. And for that reason we decided not to book it. We just decided to do like a partial hike around the lake and it was really beautiful while we were here.
2 (35m 37s):
It’s one of those things, if we had more time, like yeah, amongst ourselves, we talked ourselves out of really doing the boat ride. But it, the lake is very long and narrow and from where you get off in the parking lot and kind of they have that little boat dock and visitor center area, you can really see at the very end kind of really the, the mountaintops and glaciers. That’s kind of that little backdrop. So I do think it would be something worthwhile if you have the time to actually do the boat ride. In hindsight, I’m not upset about it but if I ever go back it’s something that I think I would want to do at this point.
0 (36m 10s):
We were getting kind of hungry. So we went back into the town of Jasper. Back to that brewery that you were all at the day before. They had some good beer options. We tried Canadian poutine. Mm
2 (36m 22s):
What’s the hot take on poutine ladies?
0 (36m 24s):
It’s okay. Yeah,
1 (36m 25s):
It’s not like my favorite. It’s not like I crave it. It was good in the moment and it’s good to have like a beer, but it’s not something I’d be ordering and craving to order all the time.
2 (36m 35s):
I kind of feel the same way. But I’m wondering, you know, I’ve only had poutine a couple times and I’m wondering if I’ve had it in the right spot to really appreciate the poutine. So I’m not done with trying poutine, but you know, it’s still worth getting when you’re here. But that’s the, the squad’s hot take on the poutine. It’s just, eh, but you’re in Canada, you gotta try it. It’s like their local cuisine, right?
1 (36m 55s):
We also didn’t think that we had enough things to do that day and we were trying to fit other things in and then we realized at this point we were rushing for a time. So we were getting done with a brew. We needed to pick up a Christmas ornament. So I sent Jamal to do that. Kim and I booked it over to a pizza restaurant. Like we gotta order this really quick. We might have to eat in the car. We ordered a salad and pizza right after we ordered Kim, booked it to the store next door to get some water ’cause we were gonna do the trail and we were gonna do the trail of the valley of the five Lakes again. What did you think of that trail Kim? I
0 (37m 25s):
Thought it was going to be easier and so I wore just regular white shoes and it was a quote unquote easy day. There were some pretty steep inclines declines and I feel like I messed up my ankles for the trip. But it was a pretty hike. The Lakes were pretty, I loved the lake at the end with the dock and there were people swimming in there and you could put your feet in there. That was really nice.
2 (37m 48s):
Yeah, and that’s something that if you are going to do this, and Brittany and I knew this I guess the second time we did it, but we did not actually bring our bathing suits to go in on that dock and do some swimming one. If we know me I’m, you know, I really don’t like cold water. I knew that water was gonna be like super, super cold.
1 (38m 6s):
It was cold. I stuck my feet in my feet were like pale.
2 (38m 10s):
But you know, we also in the evening had some Hot Springs that we were go going to do and we’re gonna obviously talk about that here coming up. But if you know me, just the way the girls call me out. But it’s very, very true. I can’t stand being wet and sitting in the car. And so the last thing I wanted to do was get wet, get in the lake, sit in the car and drive for another like 45 minutes to an hour only to get wet again in the Hot Springs. So we did not do that. But you know, if you could handle the cold, I really do think it would be something exciting and fun to do to just get on that dock and swim in the lake.
0 (38m 44s):
I’m actually kind of glad we stayed in Hinton, not just for the price and the amazing place, but it was very close to the meat Hot Springs, which is where we ended our day here in Jasper.
2 (38m 56s):
Is it meat or miette? I
1 (38m 58s):
Think it’s Miat.
2 (38m 59s):
I don’t know how to pronounce it ’cause I know they do French in Canada just as well. And you know, it’s very weird how they articulate it. So point being it’s spelled M I E T T E. Hot Springs. So miat meat, not too sure on that. So we apologize for not knowing officially, but highly recommend the stop here. Didn’t mean to interrupt you Kim just wanted to kind of give clarification.
0 (39m 21s):
Yeah and I said Malignan Canyon earlier and it might be Moline but it tomato, tomato,
2 (39m 26s):
Tomato, tomato. Yeah for
1 (39m 28s):
That one I did look it up and it was like Moline or something like that. But in, in the way that it was pronounced, it did have that accent, that French like flair to it. But regardless we made it to these Hot Springs
0 (39m 39s):
And I’m glad that we did because when you look online, the pictures don’t really do it justice. It looks cool but it’s almost like, ah, I could pass on it if I need to. They’re manmade pools fed by natural Hot Springs and there’s varying degrees of temperatures in the warm, the hot pool. And then there’s two cold pools, which is kind of cool. You can do a little back and forth action. I know Jamal, you really enjoyed that part of it.
2 (40m 1s):
You know what I, for all my talk about not wanting to get into the water on the dock there ’cause I hate cold water and I really do, you know, I pushed myself outta my comfort zone a little bit and did a little bit of back forth at one point and did get into the cold water only to get back into the the Hot Springs. So yeah, cool little aspect ’cause that is actually very health beneficial for you. And if you’re at Hot Springs and they give you good health and natural remedies anyway, you definitely want to go go ahead and do that. But yeah, I’m really glad we did this too. ’cause a lot of times for Hot Springs people are just like, well, you know, like they want that natural feel, right? Well these are natural Hot Springs just kind of in manmade pools. So yeah, the photos then kind of like, you know, you think you can pass maybe not necessarily needing to do it, but we had to climb really high up into the mountains to get into this area where they had it.
2 (40m 51s):
At that point in time the sun was starting to go down, which by the way, we’re so far north, it suns at, you know, we’re here in June, you know, around 10 30 at night. So they closed at nine. But the sun, you know, it’s starting to come down a little bit and just with the overlook of the mountains and everything, the whole ambiance, it really solidified the experience. And I enjoyed the the Miat Hot Springs a lot and would recommend this to anybody. Yeah,
1 (41m 15s):
It’s about 1650 for a single entry. You have to shower before you enter the pools, but you also have the option to rent a bathing suit or towel there if you happen to forget to pack one.
0 (41m 24s):
Not just any bathing suit. A historic bathing suit.
1 (41m 27s):
They had two D, they had a modern and a historic option so you could take a pick.
2 (41m 31s):
If I forgot my bathing suit, I would go with the the historic option. You wanna know why? Because that’s a historic Hot Springs that they built. Like what in the 1920s or something, wasn’t it? I think really, really, you know, early on in the 19 hundreds this was a popular tourist spot within the national park also
1 (41m 46s):
They also give you a locker to put your stuff in. And so we were able to watch the sun come down the mountain and we stayed here until closing, until they closed down shop for the night
0 (41m 56s):
And they were going to extend their hours once the busy summer season started. So for us it closed at nine when we were there, but it was gonna be open just a little bit later in about like a week or so after. Yeah,
2 (42m 7s):
I think like an hour later. Right. And to that point, didn’t the price go up if you were there during the busy season also, wasn’t it a little bit more expensive by about like five or $10 if I remember correctly? I
1 (42m 20s):
Didn’t see that, but perhaps you did
2 (42m 21s):
Double check on that if you’re gonna be looking into reservations than yet. ’cause I believe that was actually the case too, is that it gets a little bit more expensive in price.
0 (42m 30s):
Day four, it’s Friday baby and we are so excited because on this day we are going back down the Columbia Icefields Parkway and we’re gonna hit up a Glacier.
2 (42m 42s):
Not only are we gonna hit up a Glacier today is meet up with Charlotte, Charlotte’s meeting us in Banff at this point in time. So total Squad at this point is gonna be here come Friday evening. The
0 (42m 51s):
Glacier was really cool, it was a tour experience, so we paid about 89 bucks per person. Reserve those tickets far in advance and there are a ton of tourists, so definitely get your tickets early. You show up to the meeting spot at the tow of the Athabasca Glacier, you get on this bus, they take you over to another area where you get on these insane like monster truck looking buses to get actually to the Glacier and that’s a whole fun ride experience in and of itself. Yeah,
2 (43m 23s):
Check out our website, Travel, Squad, Podcast. We’re clearly gonna have photos. Of course the photos of those buses are gonna be on social media just as well on Instagram for you guys to check out. But I think they were saying like the only other places on earth where they have those buses isn’t Antarctica, where they do kind of like little expedition treks. So I mean these are big kind of like monster buses more so than really trucks with giant tires, tons of like horsepower in it. And of course the tire tread is to made to be go to go over ice and rocky areas, right? So the bus took us to one spot just right across the way, right? Because the meeting area, if you’re gonna do this or overlook area where you actually stopped on your original bus ride up to Jasper, kind of overlooks the glaciers and you can see the glaciers without having to do this tour, but doing the tour, you know you’re gonna get on that bus, just literally cross the highway to the one spot where it meets you up with those big ice vehicles.
2 (44m 18s):
It drives you onto the Glacier and then then at that point we gotta be able to get out, take our photos and kind of like hike and explore the Glacier a little bit.
1 (44m 27s):
Yeah, once we got off the bus, we had 30 minutes to explore. They have this conned area, so that’s what you are able to explore. We were really set on drinking Glacier water and so we found like a little sidestream that was like right near the barrier and fresh water was coming down it. So we filled our water bottles, we dipped our hands in and we drank. It was really good, fresh glacial water, really great. They also have a Canadian flag up there on top of the Glacier as well. So it’s a good spot to take photos and then from there you really go the same way back and go right back down. It’s like literally a roller coaster coming down the Glacier then going up the mountain to get back to like the spot where you transfer buses and that bus will take you to the skywalk because this tour includes both getting on the Glacier and the skywalk and in total the experience is about three hours.
2 (45m 20s):
So yeah, like you said Brittany, it was about a three hour tour. It took us to the skywalk. But couple things that I kind of want to mention here is one we’re saying it took you to the skywalk. We didn’t say what that was yet, but at some point Kim, when we were getting onto the bus again to take us to the skywalk, you really had to use the restroom. Unfortunately no restrooms at the top of the Glacier, although we did see as we were leaving that they did have a restroom for staff up there. They just don’t really kind of like advertise it and nor do they take you back as they’re going to the skywalk to the area across the street. Whereas the meeting center visitor center where they have restrooms, right? So just kind of be mindful about how much water you have to drink or if you’re gonna need to use the restroom because they really don’t have restrooms.
2 (46m 8s):
Now the skywalk was maybe about what, two miles away from the actual Glacier. Now what the skywalk is is it is a horse shoe shaped kind of land bridge that hangs out over the edge of a cliff. You’re looking down 1500, 2000 like feet glass, bottom floor. There’s no restrooms up there either, just as well. So again, like I said, just really, really be mindful of that situation. But yeah, I am, I, I don’t have a problem with heights. I won’t deny that, but I don’t like glass bottoms that hang over the edge. And so, and what was
0 (46m 46s):
Your experience on the skywalk
2 (46m 48s):
Jamal? Ah, I fucking hated it. I hated it all. Every little bit of it. Especially when people are like, Ooh, let me just jump and you know, take the photos as I’m jumping on the glass, et cetera. Jamal was having
0 (46m 58s):
A freak out,
2 (46m 60s):
Not having a freak out. It’s just not really my thing. But I told this to Brittany too. Glass bottoms don’t really bother me ’cause I’ve stood on them in the, apparently they do. Well I’ve stood on them in the CN Tower in Toronto, which is a really high tower, has a glass bottom floor. We did it in Tokyo Tower in Tokyo. It’s something about the fact that it hangs out over the edge glass bottom. That just bothers me. I don’t like it, especially when there’s that many people on it. But good views. I, I mean I can’t deny that it gives you really good views, but just not like my thing. But you ladies seem to like it though. Yes.
1 (47m 32s):
Yes. But we will say that we thought the skywalk was gonna be over the Glacier and it was not. It was two miles down the road. So you’re not looking at the Glacier at all. You’re looking overlooking the sun Wata Valley. Still really beautiful but not what we were originally anticipating.
2 (47m 49s):
Well river from the glaciers flowing through it though. But yeah, not the Glacier itself. That is correct. All in all, what would you rank the Columbia Icefields adventure that we did ladies?
1 (47m 58s):
I would give it an 8.3.
0 (47m 60s):
I was gonna say about an eight because it was really epic to be on a Glacier. Right. But it was also very crowded and only 30 minutes and only in a certain conned off area.
1 (48m 10s):
Yes and no bathrooms. But I would also say had we only done the skywalk, which was something that we were kind of contemplating, I think I would’ve been disappointed if we just did that. I think the highlight was getting on the Glacier. Oh
0 (48m 23s):
2 (48m 24s):
Yeah. That, that was definitely the highlight. So do keep that in mind when you’re driving through the Columbia Icefields Parkway. This is a really good spot to go the Athabasca Glacier and do this adventure.
0 (48m 36s):
As we were driving away, we did see people hiking in a row up the Glacier where we were not allowed to walk. And I don’t know if that was some other kind of tour or what, but that would’ve been cool to do.
2 (48m 48s):
They started at the bottom where there was rocks and no ice and were working their way up to the ice. Yeah. Now that doesn’t sound fun whatsoever. Sounds great. I, I liked the bus taking us onto it and just being directly on it. But you know, that bus is half the adventure. It
1 (49m 1s):
Really was. And the bus too, like the top of it, there was like no roof really. There was like windows at the top so the sun shined directly in and people were saying how hot it was and then they wanted the heater off and the guy was like, the heater’s not on. It’s just like the sun coming directly in to the bus.
2 (49m 18s):
So after the Glacier, what did we do ladies?
1 (49m 20s):
We went to the Messiah Canyon and we did a little hike there. And so the Messiah River flows out from Pato Lake, which is one of the Lakes we mentioned earlier, all the way to the canyon here. And we got to see parts of the canyon and the falls that were kind of there as well. And we did do a hike and we went in a clockwise direction. No one else was really on the trail while we were there. It was really nice, really scenic. It encloses you so you feel like you’re in a wooded area and even though at like the base of it, there’s a ton of people this kind of like secludes you from everyone.
2 (49m 53s):
Yeah, the Messiah Canyon Trail was really, really fun. If you’re not gonna be doing the trail, which is just a little short one, it’s not gonna take you very long to to do it whatsoever. It’s worth the stop just to kind of see the water in this area. And again, just get that appreciation for it. These are cool little overlook places should you not even want to do the Hikes. So highly recommend it Nonetheless for you guys,
0 (50m 18s):
The next hike we did was at a lake called Waterfowl Lake. And we, we went out to the viewpoint, we did the lower lake view and then we walked over to the upper Waterfowl Lake trail. It was only about a mile out and back. But I loved this lake.
2 (50m 36s):
Well I loved it too. And you called it a hike, which I guess it kind of was, but it really isn’t. It was a trail, it was completely flat. So if somebody’s intimidated by like actual inclination, you know, don’t be, this is, you know, yeah maybe the mile out and back. But it is completely flat. And what I like about it is that parking lot’s kind of like in a little wooded area, right? And then you work your way through the woods, not very far. Then you get to the lake edge and then it opens into that kind of little meadow area along the lake and little river stream that it does have. So it was really just cool different scenery that we hadn’t been into quite yet. Just that little meadow area by the lake.
2 (51m 16s):
And I really did appreciate it. But what I appreciated more is how pretty it was and how absolutely nobody was there and we just got to appreciate that little point where they had the picnic bench all by ourselves.
1 (51m 27s):
What did you love about it? Kim?
0 (51m 28s):
I loved walking along the lake privately. There was nobody else out there. The picnic table at the end was like perfect for us to just sit down and chill. We actually spent a lot of time there just taking it all in.
1 (51m 40s):
We did and the lake is created from the pedo Glacier when we were sitting here, we were sitting on the picnic bench. I love to take off my shoes and ground, put my feet in the water, all of that sorts of stuff. But we had just left Jasper, it was so hot in Jasper eighties, almost nineties when we got to this spot, this is when the weather started to turn and we could just feel like it completely cool off and we could tell that it could, it would be probably be raining later that day as well. So we got there when it was nice and sunny and then the weather, weather started to change and that’s when we left. But having it all to ourselves was really nice. We actually encountered another couple coming back from this trail and I said, oh how was the lake? Was it worth going to?
1 (52m 21s):
And she said, we didn’t make it there, it’s too far away. And we’re like, oh okay. And then I’m looking at the trail and it’s like one mile round trip and completely flat. So I think they were just looking for what we had previously gone to, which was just the waterfowl Lakes viewpoint where you literally park and you’re right on the lake edge. They weren’t looking for an adventure going deeper in.
2 (52m 41s):
And then from Waterfowl Lake we stopped at Pato Lake for Kim. Again, if you remember we were talking about how beautiful this one was. It’s where they have that boardwalk kind of like overlook, like really, really high up overlooking the lake. But you know, we had more planned for the day already had done so much. So we did do that little Squad tip we told you where we kind of like parked in the upper little parking lot. But you know, in fairness other people were doing it too. We did not park in a bus spot and no we did not park in a handicap spot. I would not do that. We found a little opening area and we just kind of went in there real quick just to give Kim that five minute peak of the the overlook. But at the same time, you know, highly recommend if you’re there during a busier time, which I thought it was gonna be busy.
2 (53m 26s):
You know, we see all this stuff about Banff, Jasper, et cetera, and this is supposedly the time that people start to go. I think we were maybe there a week or two before that really happens and we got really lucky. So if you’re there when it’s busy and the parking lots are full, don’t try to do anything like that. But literally no one except for like three people was in that upper parking lot in those open spaces that weren’t designated for bus or handicap.
1 (53m 47s):
So earlier this day and earlier in the trip we had seen signs for a national park called Kune National Park and it was not even on our itinerary at all. We had no plans to visit it, nothing was on the docket. And then I just got the thought like, well you know, how far away is Kne National Park and what is inside of it and what can we visit? Because whenever we go on trips we overestimate how long things will take. ’cause you never know how traffic’s gonna be. You don’t know if a hike’s gonna take you a little bit longer if you’re gonna stop for lunch and it’s gonna take a little bit longer than anticipated. But we were like on track or early every single day by this point and we had been go, go, go. So I did a little research in the morning and looked like Kne National Park was right next to where we were gonna be in vamp ’cause that’s where we were ending.
1 (54m 34s):
And so we decided to add that on. But we were all getting a little tired and we needed a little pick me up. So we stopped to get coffee, water and booze. Very important things.
2 (54m 45s):
Well the booze wasn’t for now the booze and drinks were for later ’cause again we were gonna be picking up Charlotte. Where we actually stopped for that was back in Lake Louise Village, which is a little bit of a town that you would say right outside, you know Lake Louise. And we were gonna be staying in that vicinity that night. So we picked up water, which we for sure needed coffee for that pick me up. And then the adult beverages for later in the evening. And then yes we did head on to Kne National Park. But one thing I thought to myself too is just like all these national Parks are closed, why do they have ’em? Why is it not all one? Like yeah I could see Banff Jasper, et cetera. But like I said earlier, we are literally on the straddle line of Alberta and British Columbia, which are two provinces in Canada and Banff all falls within Alberta.
2 (55m 34s):
Kune, Yoho in British, Columbia and Jasper and Alberta too. So like literally it could be Banff but I really think how they designated is once you cross the province line, which provinces in Canada are basically like our states, it just becomes a new national park. So one in the same but yet not hitting off a new one. Kunene National Park.
1 (55m 54s):
Kne National Park also has a lot of glaciers, grasslands, valleys, canyons. Also known as like the land of fire and ice. Really beautiful scenic drive. We stopped at Marble Canyon, I really liked this canyon. You cross this bridge, you see these beautiful blue waters of course you hike up, you get to see a waterfall. There’s several different crossings where you just really get to like appreciate the scenery and I think it’s definitely work worth a stop here. There’s seven bridges that you’re able to cross, cross on this little canyon area.
2 (56m 25s):
And I usually say this, I don’t think I’ve said it yet in this episode, you know, just to get a little bit of context of these places and what we’re talking about, be sure to Google it because you know, marble Canyon, I, I really did enjoy you are following along a canyon, but at some point like once you climb up a little bit, it gets to the point where they have multiple bridges that cross over the canyon so you can look on and walk on either side of it. Then you come across, you know, a waterfall that’s at the very end of it. And so very scenic and really almost a surreal experience. I don’t know if I’ve ever done a trail that was kind of like that and I really did appreciate it. So everything that we’re talking about, guys, you know, we could only describe it so well with our words, you know, Google it and we always say this too, pictures do no justice.
2 (57m 9s):
So just imagine what it looks like in person.
1 (57m 10s):
From there we just wanted to see another waterfall. It was called Pneuma Falls. Literally right across from the parking lot I had downloaded a trail map. And this is sometimes where like all trails can steer you wrong or trails can steer you wrong. It said that it was like a one mile hike. So we were like, okay, let’s go do the hike. It literally ended us in the middle of a forest, not at any sort of destination or landmark or anything specific. It was just like, oh the trail ends here. When obviously the trail continued. But where we were was like we’re not gonna get a view of the waterfall again. And that’s what we came there. So this was, could have been a five minute stop but we made it a little bit longer.
2 (57m 47s):
Well from five to 10 minutes, you know, not, not too much longer from where like it was crazy, you know, the trail on all trails seemed to go longer and of course it did compared to where the G p s point like had us. But so odd that it just ended almost like a fucking cul-de-sac in the middle of nothing in the forest. We found that to be quite odd. Yeah, that was so
1 (58m 6s):
Random. And our last stop in Kuenne was the continental divide sign. This is a fun quick little stop ’cause they have the sign and it shows, this is a line that divides Alberta from British Columbia. It also divides Banff from Coe. So you can, we sat on different sides of the sign. So Kim’s on like the Alberta side on the, on the British Columbia sign or vice versa. And just like fun little viewpoint stop point. And that’s also like on the continental divide. So you know that water from there on one side flows to the Atlantic and then the other side flows to the Pacific and it sits at 5,382 feet above sea level,
2 (58m 43s):
Just a hundred feet over a mile. Look at that. Almost could be the next mile high city here in the Canadian Rockies. And we have one of the US Rockies in Denver. So pretty close in that sense of things. But after our journey working our way south, enjoying parts of Jasper, parts of Amp kine, we were like, we’re hungry. We’ve got time to kill till Charlotte arrives this evening. And so we decided to eat at Bill Petos Cafe and I enjoyed it. I, I won’t lie, I know your pasta didn’t really sit too well with you. Kim. I shouldn’t say it didn’t sit too well. It was good. It just didn’t have a lot of sauce on it. And if you’re gonna have a white sauce pasta, you need a lot of white sauce on it, don’t you? Yeah, I would give
0 (59m 21s):
The place about a seven and I think a lot of places in Lake Louise had the same menu, like burgers and bine and
2 (59m 30s):
0 (59m 30s):
Pastas, pizzas. It
1 (59m 32s):
Was like a lot of American food. Pastas, pizzas, burger. And then they would have like onet dish, one Indian dish and you know, like one other fish and chips. Yeah, ethnic dish, something like that. So all the same type of menu though
0 (59m 45s):
I would’ve eaten here again. We were struggling the next day to find somewhere and we kept throwing Bill Patos back around. But it was good. It was rustic inside. It had good ambiance.
2 (59m 55s):
It definitely did. I, I enjoyed it. I mean I did did. I absolutely love it. But it’s one of those things when all the minis look the same, I knew what I was kind of getting. But you know, there are options that you can have. But like we’re saying, you know, if you’re staying in this area, which was kind of like Lake Louise Village area where we were staying and where Bill Patos cafe is, a lot of the minis of all the restaurants kind of look the same. So do keep that in mind. It can create that dilemma of when you’re trying to figure out what it is that you want to eat.
1 (1h 0m 21s):
So Kim, tell us about the hotel we checked into. We
0 (1h 0m 24s):
Stayed at the Paradise Lodge and bungalows and this place is so cute, it has like cabin looking bungalows you can stay in. It also has more of the hotel style buildings, which is where we stayed. But what was so cool about it was one of the bedrooms opened up to its own private balcony that overlooked a gorgeous mountain. It was the perfect spot to view wildlife, although we didn’t see any. But it was a great, great place. It was super cute rustic.
2 (1h 0m 52s):
I really love hotels or unique stays that fit the ambiance of the place in which you are staying. And this place here, the Paradise Lodge definitely did do that. It felt like our little own cabin bungalow in a way. And I hate to use the term bungalow ’cause you kind of think of that like jungle beach, but it really good mountain vibes that this hotel was giving off in terms of the atmosphere. But it had lots of cool things with it too, minus how cute and quaint it was. You know, it was a two bed, one bath bungalow area that we had. But they did provide, you know, oatmeal, granola bars, cafe, coffee, it did have a toaster, plates, cups, et cetera. So if you were bringing in your own food, you can use that.
2 (1h 1m 33s):
They had food that they were selling in the lobby that you can microwave. So in an area where options of food are limited, they at least kind of give you a little bit of help should you actually need that. So I, I did appreciate that aspect of it just as well. But one of the main reasons why we stayed here, and I kind of wanna bring this up ’cause we talked about Lake Louise. When Brittany and I had stopped originally working our way up, the reason why we actually chose this place is it’s a 20 minute walk to Lake Louise and everything that you will see on reviews, we’ll say the Lake Louise parking lot’s small during busy season, it fills up fast. Don’t even think about trying to find a parking spot, blah, blah, blah. And like I said, I think we were here a little bit early into the start of the season, so maybe in two weeks it could have been a different story.
2 (1h 2m 19s):
But if it is a different story and you are unable to get that spot in there, otherwise you’ll have to take a shuttle bus park in a specific area. Kills a lot of time. So we chose this one for the proximity in case we actually had to walk to Lake Louise ’cause we were doing a hike that very next day, which we’ll talk about in the next episode here, you know, after we pick up Charlotte and everything. But I just wanna throw that out there. This is why we chose this spot and I would highly recommend it.
0 (1h 2m 44s):
Charlotte came in pretty late that night. I think we picked her up around
1 (1h 2m 47s):
Like 10 30.
0 (1h 2m 48s):
10 30 at night. Yeah. So she had a long stop over in Banff, just killing time. We were communicating with her throughout her journey up and 10 30 at night. Right? We’re not too far away from the bus station, but it would be what, a couple minutes drive
2 (1h 3m 5s):
Three to five minute drive. Right. But a 40 minute walk uphill. Yeah.
0 (1h 3m 9s):
And Charlotte actually thought we were going to make her walk to the bungalows. I, I think we told her to get some water for hiking.
1 (1h 3m 17s):
Yeah. So in Lake Louise, the water supply was limited. We went to a grocery store, it was like way overpriced for what we needed. And we had forgotten to pick some up for her. We had just gotten like a can for us. And then Kim got a can thing too, or like, I think it’s a what, two or four liters or whatever it is. And so then I message Shar as we get out of that area and I say, Hey, while you’re in Banff, pick up yourself some water. And she goes, oh it’s gonna be hard because I have to carry that in my suitcase. And I’m thinking, well it’s only gonna be hard temporarily because you’re gonna get on the bus. And I’m thinking like, obviously we’re gonna be picking you up. So like what are you thinking? And then she like messages me back like, Hey, it’s gonna be hard to walk uphill with that. Just mapped.
1 (1h 3m 57s):
It looks like it’s a three minute drive for you to come get me, but it’d be a 37 minute walk uphill. So like, do you guys could pick me up? I’m thinking like Charlotte. Of course we were gonna pick you up. Like that was the whole point.
2 (1h 4m 9s):
It gave us all the good little laugh thinking that she thought we were gonna make her walk up the the hill on that one and leave her alone at night at 10 30 for the bears.
1 (1h 4m 18s):
A little bear bait. She would be,
0 (1h 4m 19s):
Yeah. And then, you know, we brought her back to the bungalows. We caught up just a little bit and pretty much went to bed just after that. We didn’t stay up too late that night. Had a big day the next day and we’re actually gonna cut it right here and save the rest of the trip for our part two episode. Thank you so much for tuning into this part one episode. You know we’re gonna come back at you next week, so keep the adventures going with us on Instagram, YouTube TikTok at Travel Squad Podcast. And if you have a question of the week, send that on
2 (1h 4m 47s):
In. And as always guys, please subscribe, rate and review your podcast and tune in every travel Tuesday for new episodes.
1 (1h 4m 54s):
Stay tuned for next week’s episode. You already know what we have coming for you, part two, the Canadian Rocky Adventure.
2 (1h 4m 60s):
Bye everybody. Bye.