Sunwapta Lake

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29 travelers at this place:

  • Day121

    Athabasca Glacier, Jasper NP, Alberta

    September 10, 2015 in Canada

    Wir stehen hier auf knapp 2000 m Höhe am Athabasca Gletscher, umgeben von gewaltigen Bergmassiven, unter Millionen von Sternen.
    Der Icefield Parkway in den kanadischen Rocky Mountains ist an landschaftlicher Schönheit kaum zu überbieten: Schneebedeckte Gipfel spiegeln sich in türkisblauen Seen, reisende Flüsse stürzen in tiefe Schluchten und das Ganze wird begleitet vom Bunt des herbstlichen Waldes.
    Und als wäre das alles noch nicht genug springen auch noch ein paar brünftige Hirsche über die Wiesen (das Bild zeigt allerdings eine Hirschkuh; die stehen da ganz friedlich und warten geduldig auf ihre Begattung ;-)), und die Bären (leider nur ein peinliches Handyfoto) stopfen sich mit Hagebutten und Cranberries ihre Bäuche voll.
    Und die heißen Quellen ... nee, jetzt ist genug. Sonst glaubt das ja wieder keiner.
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  • Day11

    Words can hardly express the ‘wow’ factor for the 230 kilometre experience. Travelling north and then south three days later, we found ourselves amazed, speechless, exhilarated to exhausted by the many amazing vistas.

    I won’t bore you with the detail, just the highlights. Sadly I am limited to six shots for the article, as long as you know they severely under state the magnificence, beauty and power of this place, this experience, this two days of our lives.

    Seeing frozen lakes became common, beginning with the magic of the well featured Lake Louise. None of this perfect blue skies, pristine waters, green grass and red canoes. Oh no, there was more than a metre of snow in places, with ice rinks still noticeable on the lake’s surface and heavy skies in the background. But given all of that there was still something special about taking a selfie with the very recognisable vee of the mountains.

    Heading north saw us experience increasing snow, with the highest point of the trek being over 2000 metres. Bow Pass was special, especially on the way back. I struggled for twenty minutes up a snow-covered road to get a view of the famous Peyto Lake. Missing its blue mystique Peyto was was still well frozen!

    The action of water has led to amazing rock formations and waterfalls. Mistaya Canyon, Sunwapta and Athabasca Falls all highlighted the incredible powerful force of water over time. It is amazing, and photos don’t really give its true power and dynamic.

    Parker Ridge highlighted a ‘whoopsie’ in the road [a technical term for large corner and gradual climb] offering awesome views north through the valley.

    To experience Athabasca Glacier was amazing. We found the commercialism somewhat distasteful, so we ventured through some snow [not good for Sheree’s knees] to a viewpoint. With a strong breeze coming off a glacier, deeper than the Eiffel Tower is tall, it gave us an inkling of the uniqueness of this spot... it was freezing!

    On our return journey gloriously clear skies were enjoyed much of the way. Plus we were blessed with wildlife - black bear, grizzly bear, large horned sheep, elk, deer... to name a few.

    By the way, how do you define a traffic jam along the Parkway? It’s cars stopping and photographing wildlife. Sheree came within five metres of the black bear or should I say the bear came that close to her open window. [I had to hold her back]

    We are glad we have had this experience. And as a tour director / bus driver from Melbourne told us from his thirty years experience coming back here annually, “...this is the best time of year to come.” There is still plenty of snow [but not too much] and the tourists numbers haven’t grown to the mammoth proportions of summer time.

    Thank you Icefield Parkway... you are beyond Wow!
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  • Day19

    Od 39782
    Miles 463
    28.6 mpg
    SOC 86 Percent
    46 F

    Night in Icefields hotel area - not a lot of amenities, but incredible views.
    Lots of traffic and construction today - guess we are back to civilization.

    Might make it home today depending on the route we take.
    Granola for breakfast and a pastry stop at Lake Louise 🙂👣

  • Day266

    In Icefield we also did the Glacier Skywalk. To be honest I expected a better view of the glaciers but most likely you saw the valley and the mountains in the far end. Nevertheless the construction itself was impressive!
    On the way towards Jasper we stopped at the quite busy Sunwapta Falls and Athabasca Falls as well as the beautiful located Honeymoon Lake Campground.
    The Icefield Parkway (Hwy between Banff and Jasper) is an amazing road to travel but gets really busy in summer. Anyway, in early june we were still lucky with the traffic!Read more

  • Day29

    Jasper - Icefield

    July 17, 2017 in Canada

    Athabasca Glacier
    Wir konnten fast bis an diesen Gletscher hoch wandern. Leider sah man auch, dass der Gletscher immer weiter zurückgeht.

    Und unten beim Parkplatz befindet sich der Sunwapta Lake.

    Vorher haben wir noch den Bow Lake und den Peyto Lake gesehen oder nicht gesehen. War ziemlich nebelig. Letzteres fanden wir echt schlimm, weil da gefühlt 100 Asiaten sich auf einen Aussichtspunkt drängelten und gesehen hat man eh fast nichts. In diesem Urlaub sind uns Asiaten wirklich sehr negativ aufgefallen.
    Um mal so richtig zu pauschalieren: sie drängeln sich bei den Toiletten vor, obwohl ich mit einem Kind da stehe, sind unfreundlich und unhöflich, machen keinen Platz, auch wenn man schon alleine am Weg steht, müssen sie sich trotzdem noch mit ihrer Gruppe vorbeischieben, merken nicht, dass sie anderen ins Bild laufen, ok, kann mir auch passieren, aber entschuldigen kennen sie auch nicht. Sorry, allen den ich hier unrecht tue, aber irgendwie ticken die anders.😳
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  • Day51

    Das Columbia Icefield ist wirklich ein mächtiger Gletscher. Es war super interessant zu sehen, wie die Berge und die Vegetation sich verändert hat, je näher man dem Gletscher war. Um sich die Dimension des Gletschers vorstellen zu können, sollte man wissen, dass der Gletscher gleich drei Weltmeere mit Wasser versorgt.
    Leider sieht man besonders bei Gletschern den Klimawandel drastisch. Wenn die Gletscherschmelze im aktuellen Tempo weitergeht, ist der Millionen Jahre alte Gletscher in knapp 100 Jahren komplett geschmolzen.Read more

  • Day86

    Columbia Icefield discovery center

    August 28, 2016 in Canada

    Once again we landed into one of those big spots where the tourist industry got all their creativity together to press the last dollar out of you.

    So can get guided tours to walk on the glacier, you can drive with a bus up onto the glacier and fill yourself a bottle with glacier water, you can walk on a little bridge with glassfloor hanging on a stoney mountain wall to 'fly through the glaciers' and of course you can book helicopter tours.

    The prices have been riboff and we did most of that anyways before completely for free by hiking inside the glacier national park, but of course their are always people ro prefer the easy way...
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  • Day6

    Icefields Parkway North

    August 1, 2017 in Canada

    We then hit the Columbia Icefields Discovery Centre - the centre point of the parkway. The Icefield is like a big frozen lake with frozen rivers (glaciers) coming off it - the Athabaskan glacier is the one you can see from the centre. The Sunwapta glacier feeds the river that runs alongside the road for much of the rest of the trip.We went into he centre and bought a few things - Ed loved a moose pillow! I enquired about timings for the Skywalk and the drive onto the glacier. We could have done both but wouldn't have finished until after 5pm, so as we are doing the glacier walk on Friday just booked for the Skywalk now. Had to wait about 10 minutes then we queued to join the bus (I dropped the moose back in the car - worried as usual about how we will fit everything in by the end of the holiday, may need a roof box). The bus took us about 10 minutes down the road to the Skywalk, with an entertaining commentary on the way. Apparently water from here flows into three separate oceans depending on which side of the mountain it runs down. Slightly scarily the big rocks either side of the road tumble down from high above and sometimes the road needs to be cleared of them in the mornings.

    At the Skywalk we got handsets to give us a guided tour then followed the path along the side of the valley, looking at descriptions of how the valley formed and the animals and plants that lived there. We got to the showpiece, a glass floored horseshoe shape sticking 30m out over the canyon. Sam just stepped on then quickly off she then confined herself to what they called the chicken walk, the concrete rather than glass path. I found it slightly unnerving to be on such a big glass structure, kids were fine with it. Funny how the brain reacts to things like that. We made it off safely and continued the tour back to the bus and the centre. It was an interesting experience and broke up the journey nicely. Back at the centre we got drinks then headed off.

    Not too far down the road we pulled over at a nice waterfall that had the bonus of being on various levels that you could scramble up to fairly easily. Ed and I got all the way to the bottom of the top part, where the water was falling the furthest and stood in the spray of the waterfall. Think he enjoyed this the most out of the whole day, was good fun.

    Next stop was Sunwapta Falls, only a couple o minutes walk from the car park and where a lake emptied out into a canyon with great force. A bridge across the falls made viewing easy and the power of the water was clear.

    After this we had our first encounter with nature, spotting cars pulled over and duly joined them to see a female elk (we found this out later when the commentary told us they had paler coloured bottoms) which was licking the rocks by the side of the road (they do this to get minerals that they don't get from their plant diet). Took some photos and got very close (from safety of car of course).

    Our last pull off was Athabasca Falls, quite close to Jasper. Close to car park and as spectacular as the Sunwapta - a bit bigger if anything. From here we headed to Jasper and Mount Robson Inn. The sat nav got very confused, essentially because it didn't realise you could access the car pal from the side so took us straight past and round the houses to get to the front entrance (it continued with this every time but we are wiser now!). We checked in, nice room with bunk beds and super king size for us. Got some recommendations for dinner from reception and walked the 10 minutes or so into town. Was very busy (as it is very small downtown area) and we couldn't get in anywhere to eat so went to Subway in the end, then back to hotel quite exhausted by the driving.
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  • Day7

    Columbia Icefields

    September 29, 2016 in Canada

    Der zweite geplante Stop auf unserer Tour waren die Columbia Icefields. Ein wunderschöner Gletscher, der leider jedes Jahr ein Stück schrumpft. Wir hatten dort nicht nur eine einzigartige Kulisse sondern nahmen uns die Freiheit und sind querfeldein durch die Steinwüste gelaufen.
    Leider konnten wir nicht mit dem Bus auf den Gletscher fahren oder über den Skywalk aus Glas laufen, weil es zu teuer war und wir wegen asiatischer Mitmenschen stundenlang hätten anstehen müssen.
    Wir hatten aber auch so viel Spaß und einige gute Eindrücke und Fotomotive :)
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