Icefields Parkway – May 2017

 

We left Banff earlier today and traveled on the Icefields Parkway, through Banff National Park and then directly into Jasper National Park. I know this gets redundant, but this place is fantabulous! And, we are no longer virgins! Bear virgins, that is. We saw our first sighting of bears, and we have yet to leave Alberta Province!  Tonight we stay at the Wapiti Campground, located in Jasper NP, close to Jasper.

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In fact, we had a nice wildlife day on the road, with sightings of bear, moose, bighorn sheep and tourists with selfie sticks! That last group can be vicious, particularly if you stand between them and a good photo op; kind of like getting between mother bears and their cubs. Not to worry – we always carry a can of Tourist Spray any time we leave the vehicle. Never leave home without it.

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Mama bear and two cubs

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Moose

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Bighorn sheep

The Icefields Parkway is absolutely stunning – words don’t capture the beauty. We had majestic mountains on either side of us, viewed gorgeous lakes and rivers, went through numerous avalanche areas, saw many incredible ice fields, plus saw wildlife. This could as easily be called the National Geographic Highway.

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But the reason they call this the Icefields Parkway is, drum roll, the numerous ice fields you see along the way. These ice fields are incredibly imposing, and beautiful.

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Speaking of avalanches, we passed one avalanche that must have only occurred days or weeks ago, and the damage was unbelievable. An entire swath of trees was wiped out in what I am sure was a matter of seconds, dumped tons of snow, trees, and debris across the highway, ripped out guardrails, and created a clearing as you look up the slope that clearly never existed before the avalanche wiped out an entire stand of trees. Amazing.

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Meanwhile, look the other way across the highway and you are treated to drop-dead gorgeous scenes. How does this all make sense?

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And talk about glacial waters and their beauty! Oh my goodness!!

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Very shortly we will start to be a little more remote and post a little less often as we head towards Dawson Creek, British Columbia, the Yukon and beyond.  See you some time soon!

4 responses to “Icefields Parkway – May 2017

  1. Thanks for your insightful explanations and enthusiasm. I’m off to do some of this journey in the next 2 days.

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  2. I will have to get some of that Tourist Spray. I think you have a photo of a moose in this post. I am following you with interest because I want to do this trip as well.

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    • Ha! I think you are right about the moose! I sure thought it looked like a moose but every other indication on the ride said caribou. I will edit my post, and thanks! This has been so far an unbelievable trip – hope yours is as well.

      Like

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