New year, new decade(?) and new adventures all come together in this month's installment of the Photo Blogging Challenge. Between New Year's Eve fireworks, checking out the Banff/Lake Louise Snow Days, a visit to Contemporary Calgary's new home, a vacation including new-to-us National and State parks and other activities, there were plenty of photos to choose from.
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.
This is an easy, interesting and scenic hike that starts along the Lake O'Hara shoreline, turns uphill via a short series of switchbacks and then enters an otherworldly plateau of loose talus and scree before ascending alongside Victoria Falls on stone steps constructed by Lawrence Grassi. After skirting the shorelines of two lovely little lakes, a short slope up through a break in the cliffs leads to the rocky slabs above scenic Lake Oesa.
Opabin West and East trails anchor an easy loop to Opabin Plateau - a beautiful, rocky hanging valley above Lake O'Hara. The plateau is dotted with multiple alpine lakes, offers spectacular views of Lake O'Hara valley and is criss-crossed by a network of trails that pass multiple waterfalls, larch trees and more.