It’s 12:30 pm on a beautiful Thursday morning. It’s May 6, and the temperature is going to get to +20 degrees celsius (68 degrees fahrenheit) this afternoon, so winter clothing isn’t advisable. I’m waiting on a ride to head out to do a portrait shoot for two dear friends of mine. The backdrop they’ve chosen is going to be the luscious landscape of Jasper, Alberta. I feel another travel blog in the rising.
I got all of my gear packed and ready to go. We loaded up the truck and started making our trek west to the Rocky Mountains. Living in central Alberta you tend to forget of what rolling hills and trees look like, especially if you live in a city. Heading west on highway 16 will showcase you the gradual progression of what’s to come. After a long work week I have to say that the journey was therapeutic for me. As you get closer to towns like Edson and Hinton, the mountains make their big entrance and surround you with breathtaking views of ancient structures that have stood the test of time.
After passing through the Jasper National Park gate you get fully immersed into the massive rising rock walls with snow caps on top. There’s beautiful river streams feeding lakes alongside the highway. There’s one location where there’s a landing field for small aircrafts which looked so fitting in an area like this. We get to where we’ll be staying for two days at the Beckers Chalet. Located alongside the Icefield Parkway on Highway 93, it’s a set of little cosy cottages that sits right next to the Athabasca River. This is a good start to a weekend getaway in the mountains
The next morning I woke early to get a few shots of the Athabasca River. The water is clear and white and if your brave enough to touch it it’s fairly cold. This is glacier fed water so its cold just standing next to the running current. I sat for a moment and enjoyed the rushing sound of water passing me by, and I instantly got immersed into the moment, almost to the point that I lost track of time. All right back to reality, let’s head to the first location.
The Jasper Skytram is a gondola (cable car) that was erected in 1964 which brings as much as 30 people up to about 7,472 feet above sea level. When you arrive at the top, there’s a trail that leads further up the mountain where you can get a tremendous view of the town of Jasper and the surrounding areas. The one mountain that caught my eye was Pyramid Mountain. A fellow named James Hector named the mountain back in 1859 due to it’s apparent appearance. I’ve couldn’t have had a more perfect day. There was little to no wind, the sun was shining, no cloud in sight. Too bad I forgot my sunscreen.
Arriving to the bottom, we went in the town of Jasper for a bite to eat. Jasper is a great vibrant small mountain town with pretty well all the accommodations you’d need. There’s a bunch of gift shops, bicycle rental places, cafes, restaurants with porches that faces the mountain view, and a train station that has a fully functional train terminal, not a museum for once. After I consumed bad greasy bar food, it was off to the next location, Pyramid Lake.
Pyramid Lake is located north of the town of Jasper. The lake is at the forefront of the appropriately named Pyramid Mountain. The lake is crystal clear and beautiful sitting in front of the 9, 075 foot mammoth in the background. The lake has a small island that has a bridge you can cross. When I arrived I was witnessing a couple getting married on the island.It was a tremendous setting for a special occasion.
Making our way back to the main drag, we decided that after a long day of photographs it was time to relax and really soak in the atmosphere. Our next move was to head towards the hot springs outside of town. The Miette Hot Spings are naturally fed hot spring water that flow from the mountains and then cooled to a comfortable level by the time it reaches the pools you get to go into. There’s two hot pools and two cool pools. After a long day of travelling it was nice to take a quick dip in the cold pool and go straight into the warm one. After our bodies got a chance to fully relax, we got back on the road.
Back at our camp, its time to back up all the photos from that day, have a beer, and then go to bed. The next morning I wanted to go to one last location by myself. My gear was packed from the night before so I put on some clothes, got the truck keys, and set off. My last location was Old Fort Point. A hiking area and a fantastic lookout point towards the town of Jasper and everything around it, I wanted to get one last look of this beautiful landscape. While I’m walking up, I got swept into the environment and again I got immersed into the landscape. The mountains have a way of putting a mindset into place. I’m not sure if it’s the sheer scale of the area or how much various types of terrain are all into one location, but for me this place is truly inspiring. There’s a sense of peace where I can forget whatever troubles my mind, even if it’s momentarily. You can’t ignore the massive stone figures around you because they have such a tremendous presence.Another trip in the books, now its time to go through all the photos and footage, and work on planing onto the next trip.