.All Trips / Alberta / Central Canada / North America

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

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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 …

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“Pic of the Week”, October 20, 2017: Paradise Valley, Alberta

06 Paradise Valley, Lethbridge (2)

There are probably more places that go by the name “Paradise Valley” than by any other.  This particular one is situated on the western outskirts of Medicine Hat, just off the TransCanada Highway in eastern Alberta.

The valley was home to the native peoples of Alberta for thousands of years.  They lived here, gathered wild berries, and hunted buffalo (chasing them off a cliff at a nearby”jump”).  They valley has a rich archaeologic record documenting this history which has been extensively explored. 

Today this Paradise valley is home to a public park and golf course, and has this pretty floral wagon situated within it.

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

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“Pic of the Week”, September 1, 2017: Canola field, Saskatchewan

08 Canola Field, Saskatchewan (1)

I had a pleasant drive across the Canadian prairies this summer with my father.  While the landscape is flat and lacks relief, it was a great time to do the trip because the canola and flax were blooming, adding a lot of color to the landscape.  And the first cutting of hay was being bailed, putting a fresh pleasant scent in the wind.  

Canola has become a popular crop in Canada these past few decades and canola fields are everywhere.  The plants are about a meter high and produce beautiful small yellow flowers that ripen into bean-like pods.  Black seeds from the pods are harvested and crushed to create canola oil and meal.  Canola seeds contain about 45 percent oil …

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.All Trips / Alberta / Central Canada / North America

Cochrane Farmers’ Market

24-Cochraine Farmers Market 08-2015 27

The town of Cochrane sits in the beautiful Bow River Valley, between Calgary and Banff.  Growing rapidly because of its proximity to Calgary, Cochrane still retains a small town vibe although it’s now home to more than 20,000 people.   The region was originally developed as a ranch, as was much of the western Alberta prairies, and the farmers’ market is still held at the Historic Ranch Site (which you can explore when you’re done with your visit to the market).

While it’s only held during the summer months, the Farmers’ Market is very enjoyable.  It’s busy, but not too crowded, and features locally grown produce and handicrafts, as well as popular food vendors.  You’ll find items here you don’t see …

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“Pic of the Week”, July 1, 2017: Ballooning over Calgary

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Stepped out of my home on my way to work early one morning and was surprised to see this hot-air balloon floating over the roof-tops.  Not a common site and as good as a jolt of caffeine in waking me up.

 

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.All Trips / Alberta / Car Culture / Central Canada / North America

Classic Steel — a visit to the Rolling Sculpture Car Show, Canmore

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Happy Canada Day, eh?  Today is Canada’s 150th birthday and across the country people are celebrating in a big way.  It’s not everyday a country reaches that age and there is good reason to celebrate, because Canada is a great place to live!  There’s a “suggestion” from the Canadian government that a certain percentage of media be “Canadian Content”, so here is our piece of Canadian content for today.

I wonder if there is anything more Canadian than spending a pleasant summer day enjoying classic cars with the beautiful Alberta Rocky Mountains as a backdrop?  Probably so, but those things likely would be a lot less fun.

Summers in Canada, or for that matter any place that has cold snowy winters, are …

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.All Trips / Alberta / Central Canada / North America

Gotta Sing, Gotta Dance! A Day at Calgary’s Ukrainian Festival

Calgary Ukranian Festival 06-2016 (20)

One of the many things I enjoy about summers in Canada are the large number and variety of ethnic festivals held around the country.   Like the United States, Canada has derived much of its character from its many immigrant groups.  People are encouraged to celebrate their heritage, culture and traditions, while become part of the national melting pot.

If you’re interested in learning more about the culture of a country, visiting one of these festivals is an excellent way to take a “mini-trip” to that destination.  This year I wanted to explore somewhere I’d never been to before, so decided to stop by the Calgary Ukrainian Festival.  Over a weekend, the large Ukrainian community of the city presented a great celebration …

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

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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)

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