“Pic of the Week”, February 14, 2020: St Mary’s Parish, Banff

P1000327

A special place to visit when you’re exploring Banff is this pretty mountain church.

Catholic missionaries have had a presence in the Canadian Rockies for almost 200 years, including during the founding of the Banff townsite in the late 19th century.  A log cabin church was built in Banff in 1888 and it was consecrated as  ‘Our Lady of the Assumption’, but known by the locals as St Mary’s.

The church you see today was built in 1951 by Fr. Robert McGuinness, and it replaced the original building.  Fr McGuinness had attended seminary in Europe and loved the stone churches he saw there, inspiring him to build something of this type in his beloved town, Banff.   Fr. McGuinness had been a structural …

Read More

Karl on | Leave a comment

“Pic of the Week”, December 6, 2019: Fresh Snow in the Mountains

P1150370

I love driving through the mountains.  Perhaps no season in the mountains is more memorable than winter.  The fresh snow on the Rocky Mountains in the Crowsnest Pass and soft light were quite lovely. 

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, December 6, 2019: Fresh Snow in the Mountains

“Pic of the Week”, June 28, 2019: Peyto Lake, Alberta

IMG_8829

One of the classic symbols of the Canadian Rockies is Peyto Lake, which is situated adjacent to Icefields Parkway, the road which connects Banff and Jasper.  Peyto Lake is a popular stop with travelers who enjoy taking in this panoramic view from Bow Summit.

The lake is glacier fed, the glacial silt giving it a lovely milky turquoise-green color.  It sits at 1860 m (6100 ft) above sea level.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance)

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, June 28, 2019: Peyto Lake, Alberta

“Pic of the Week”, April 26, 2019: Downtown Calgary

Returning to Calgary from Whitehorse (17)

I’ve always thought Calgary had a pretty skyline — and I’m not alone in that opinion as it’s been featured in several movies.  Rising from the prairies, a modern city that seems to be optimistic about its future.

Downtown Calgary is about 12 miles southwest of Calgary International Airport, so  you often see it as you fly into the city.  Usually it’s too dark or I’m sitting on the wrong side of the plane or there’s some other reason not to pull out my cell phone and snap some photos, but recently the conditions were perfect.

My plane approached downtown from the west, looped south of downtown, then to the east and north up to the airport.  From my seat in the …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, April 26, 2019: Downtown Calgary

“Pic of the Week”, April 13, 2018: Boo the Bear, Golden B.C.

Golden B.C . Grizzly Bear Refuge (35)

I’d like you to meet Boo, a grizzly bear. Boo is well known around the Canadian Rocky Mountain region because he lives at the Kicking Horse Grizzly Bear Refuge and gets lots of visitors. His home consists of a fenced 22-acre piece of natural land (apparently the world’s largest protected grizzly bear habitat) where Boo has lived and wandered freely since 2003. Boo and his sibling were orphaned at only a few months old when their mother was killed by a poacher; sadly Boo’s sibling didn’t survive his first hibernation.

Boo has found a good home here in eastern British Columbia, near the town of Golden. He’s been known to escape during mating season (he digs out under his electrified fence), …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, April 13, 2018: Boo the Bear, Golden B.C.
.All Trips / Alberta / Central Canada / North America

Banff National Park’s best Short Hike — Moraine Lake Rockpile Trail

moraine lake

Moraine Lake is located a few miles south of Lake Louise in Banff National Park, in one of the most scenic and breath-taking locales of the Canadian Rockies.  In the winter the lake is buried under a thick layer of snow and not accessible by car.  The road leading to Moraine Lake is a popular cross-country skiing destination once enough snow has accumulated for the Park Service to groom it, but the skiing trail ends well before the lake because of high avalanche risk within its valley.  During the summer months (June – Sept) Moraine Lake is popular and busy, even though it doesn’t thaw out until late June.  Parking is limited so it’s best to arrive early.  The lake …

Read More

Tagged , , ,

“Pic of the Week”, May 27,2017: Spring in the Rocky Mountains

P1070298

I enjoyed a beautiful drive alongside and through the Rocky Mountains in Alberta and British Columbia this past week.  The landscape had greened nicely with the warming weather, but the mountains still had lots of snow on them.  I made a few stops along the way and photographed some of the beautiful scenery.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, then right arrow to advance the slideshow)

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, May 27,2017: Spring in the Rocky Mountains

“Pic of the Week”, June 24, 2016: Moose at Piney Lake, Colorado

Summer 2009 123 Piney Lake, Vail

I love summer days in the Rocky Mountains!  Having finished a rewarding six mile hike at beautiful Piney Lake, situated in the Gore Range of Colorado, we were resting by the lake’s shore and enjoying the scenery before returning to our timeshare unit in Vail.  Suddenly and surprisingly quietly, two large moose walked by us on their way to the lake.  They wadded into the clear water and started munching on water-plants growing close to shore.  They were not disturbed by our presence and were close enough that I was able to take some nice photos.

Moose are huge, the largest of all the deer species.  Males carry massive antlers which can have a span of up to 6 feet (1.8 meters).  …

Read More

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, June 24, 2016: Moose at Piney Lake, Colorado