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Canada Diary Part 9 – Enjoying Jasper

Canada Diary Part 9 – Enjoying Jasper

Canadians sleep in really late. We decided to go against the flow, and get an early start to our day, to maximise our time here and enjoy an early morning fishing trip, but after the drama with Luke in the wee hours last night, we all couldn’t help but sleep in late. Thank goodness he was feeling fine in the morning and after a bleary-eyed breakfast, we headed to the town of Jasper to buy lunch and then off to Medicine Lake, world-renowned for its trout fishing on fly.

 

First off, a picnic at Beaver Creek, a remote and picturesque spot deep in the mountains. We are world class picnickers – choosing to eat a cold lunch in the wild over any other destination meal. It is incredible how many well equipped picnic spots there are all over Canada. Everywhere you go, there are picnic areas in gob-smacking destinations, complete with (albeit rustic) toilets and bear-proof dustbins. We enjoyed a feast of freshly baked bread, cold turkey (which by the way tastes amazing and feels much better than giving something up), cheese, salad and crisps.

A picnic at Beaver Creek

Picnicking at Beaver Creek

Bear bin

A bear-proof garbage bin

Pit toilet

A pit toilet (don’t ask!)

From there we hiked up the most beautiful forest track – a path littered with leaves and lined with trees that reached the sky, running next to a gurgling creek which pierced the absolute stillness of the surrounding woods. Our destination was Beaver Lake, a crystal clear, deep aquamarine pool of water tucked away hidden in the mountains and teeming with colourful Brook Trout. Amid squabbling over who gets the best fishing spot, the boys managed to catch a small trout each, and Jacob hit paydirt with five. More squabbling on the walk back, as it was clearly unfair that Jacob caught so many! I was glad for the family feud, which was sure to frighten any local wild bears away.

Beaver Creek hiking trail

Beaver Creek hiking trail

Crystal clear and picture perfect

Crystal clear and picture perfect

What bright colours!

What bright colours!

Heading back to the gigantic Medicine Lake, the first challenge was to find a suitable fishing spot. As we approached our chosen parking pullover, we were delighted as a mommy black bear and her tiny baby bear cub trotted onto the road in front of us. What a lucky sighting! Clearly we could no longer park there though, as mother bears get very angry with interfering humans, so we headed back to the inlet of the lake and hiked up to where fishing was permitted. A huge and ominous looking storm cloud moved over to the North and provided a dramatic backdrop to our fishing expedition.

Mommy and baby bear

Mommy and baby bear

An ominous storm

An ominous storm

As the storm approached, the wind spewed its freezing breath our way and the icy rain started swirling around us. During this climatic frenzy, Ralph hooked one large rainbow trout, followed by a second which we decided to keep for dinner. Luke and I chickened out and headed back to the car for some warm respite from the tempest. Ralph, Jacob and Cian soldiered on and their determination paid off when Cian hooked a beautifully impressive huge male rainbow. Smiles all round as we headed home, happy and energised after an awesome day in Mother Nature’s finest playground.

Ralph's Rainbow

Ralph’s Rainbow

Cian casting in the tempest

Cian carrying on regardless

Jasper National Park is truly magnificent. I can’t imagine a more magical place for lovers of the outdoors. Mountains, pristine forests and crystal clear lakes, rivers and waterfalls everywhere and Canada Parks has maximised your enjoyment with kilometres and kilometres of cycling and walking trails, picnic spots complete with tables and toilets, signs and beautiful maps – we could literally spend a whole year here discovering all the different places.

 

Three days gave us a tiny sublime taste of this stunning piece of paradise and we were very sad when it came to an end and we had to pack up camp and move on.

Double Wabasso rainbow

Double Wabasso rainbow

On the camping front, I did a bit better today. When we arrived back to our camp, there was the most enormous vivid double rainbow right across the road – a sure sign of good times for us. Sitting around the campfire, telling stories about our day while eating pasta with fresh wild Canadian trout was a moment that will be etched in my memory forever. The downside was that the angry storm plunged the mercury into single figures and it was so freezing that we were all breathing plumes of steam. Despite wearing my entire wardrobe, zipping my sleeping bag together with Ralph’s and spooning to share body heat, I froze the whole night long.

Happy Camper Meter

Happy Camper Meter

Yours in travel

Signature

 

 

Did you miss any previous diary entries? Click below to catch up:

Canada Diary Part 8 – Settling in to Camping

Canada Diary Part 7 – Camping Take 2: Wabasso in Jasper

 

 

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