We woke to our second day in the Canadian Rockies with super sore throats and a sluggish feeling. We were sick while traveling. Ugh! Despite feeling icky we decided to at least spend the day sitting in a pretty place.
Lake Louise seemed the perfect option. It was crowded, but for good reason. Steep mountains covered in glaciers rose 4000 feet above the turquoise water. We found a nice spot to sit and take it all in. People in red canoes paddled about the lake.
Birds like this Clark’s nutcracker hopped along the shore.
When we got cold, we went inside the Fairmont Chateau hotel and ate a late lunch overlooking the lake.
Driving back to the campground, our curiosity got the better of us, even though we were low on energy and sneezing. We decided to take a detour and check out Moraine Lake. We were glad we did. It was much less crowded, and just as magnificent.
It’s a very snowy weekend here. We’re sitting inside reflecting on a recent winter experience: cross country skiing! Chris helped code the Home Ranch’s new website and as an extra thank you, they gave us a complimentary two-night stay.
Our favorite part was that we could borrow gear and ski as much as we wanted on their 20 miles of groomed trails. Strangely enough, we’d each cross country skied exactly once before — both many years ago, both in Michigan, and each with an aunt. Those trips happened so long ago that we had to re-learn everything. It felt like a totally new experience. Trying something for the first time, like kids do, is so much fun! We fell a few times, but smiled a lot.
North Fork Cascade Canyon to String Lake Trailhead (11 miles)
We scrambled up onto a large boulder overlooking our campsite and ate breakfast. We packed the remaining food into our now almost empty bear can, just enough for our final day in this awesome backcountry.
Chris’s altitude headaches and fatigue from previous days were completely gone. He was thankful to be back to normal.
A storm loomed in the forecast, so we packed up a little earlier than usual. We wanted to make sure to cross Paintbrush Divide, our high point for the day, before the storm broke loose. Marmots basked in the sunlight as we set off.
Lake Solitude, though early in our day’s walk, was so nice that we opted to stop and and enjoy the view for a while. The water was clear enough to watch fish moving in its depths.