So many great hiking trails, so little time...It's challenging to choose just one hike, but we eventually opted for the 8 km (5 mile) loop comprised of a long section of the Brins Mesa, Soldier Pass, Jordan Road and Cibola Pass trails. Highlights included fantastic views, the Seven Sacred Pools, Devil’s Kitchen and The Mitten. We completely missed the Hole in the Sky and Soldier’s Arch in our trip planning, so that means we have a ready-made reason to return some day.
After Zodiac excursions in Placentia Bay and Aviron Bay, we looked forward to going ashore for a short hike in Gros Morne National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The easy Lookout Trail was a great introduction to this fascinating part of Canada.
Chester Lake is a great shoulder season hike, can be done on snowshoes in winter, and has a lake for skipping stones, dipping toes or watching fish rise. It's pretty easy, with less than 400 meters elevation gain. And there are a few options to extend your hike past the lake: a loop around the lake, the Elephant Rocks, or continuing up to Three Lakes Valley.
September is one of our favourite months to get out and about in Alberta. We absorbed doses of Vitamin N(ature) at a concert in the park, on hiking and biking trails and on our usual active transportation walks to pick up groceries, stop at the library, etc.
Despite the mist, rain, sleet and snow pellets, it was definitely worth hiking at Lake O'Hara during golden larch season and we hope to do it again (in better weather) some time over the next few years. On the advice of Parks Canada staff, we covered about 9 km, hiking up the Lake Oesa trail, across the Yukness Ledges and then - after a bit of time exploring the Opabin Plateau - down East Opabin trail.