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Yoho Park , Alberta

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Wednesday, April 21—The day after our rainy day dawned cold, but mostly clear. It had snowed overnight.We decided to drive the Trans-Canada highway through Yoho Park. As with the other parks, we found many of the trails into the interior closed dueto snow, so we were limited to viewing most of the scenery from the road. My trip notes mention that we really enjoyed a place    called "Natural Bridge," but I can't recall exactly what this place looked like. This is what happens when you wait too long to document a trip! I think I might have taken this photo there, but am not certain.

One spot I do remember well was the Spiral Tunnel viewpoint. There are two railroad tunnels inside the mountain there that circle back upon themselves so the trains traveling this route can make it up the grade of the mountain between the tiny town of Field (one of the very few locations in these parks inhabited by people) and Kicking Horse Pass.

Another place we really liked a lot was Emerald Lake, a resort at a pretty little spot we drove up a mountain road to reach (supposedly from the memorable Natural Bridge parking lot). Even covered with ice, it was easy to imagine what the lake might look like in the summer and autumn months with its blue-green waters refecting the surrounding pines. This photo was taken from one of the upper verandas of the main lodge.

The water in each of the parks we visited seemed to have its own particular park-specific shade of blue or blue-green. In Yoho, the water was a bright   aquamarine color. Upon closer inspection of the water (yes, we dipped our hands in), we found the silt to be very fine and sand-like.

It was still early when we reached the boundary of Yoho Park, so we kept going west through Golden to Glacier Park in British Columbia. The approach to Golden was a hairpin curve on a road that wound along the top of a gorge. Really spectacular, but a bit nerve-wracking for the driver (which wasn't me)! On the other side of Golden, the approach to the mountains housing Glacier Park was breath-taking. The mountains were a contrasting combination of rounded rocks smoothed over by centuries of glaciers, and tall, pointy, craggy peaks covered thickly with snow. In the other parks we had visited, the road usually travelled along the valley so that we were always looking up at the mountains from the bottom. In Glacier Park, the Trans-Canada Highway took us up into the mountains. We saw several glaciers and many places where avalanches had occurred. We went through a series of "sheds," built over the road to prevent the frequent avalanches from covering up the road. Because it was getting late, we only went as far as the Rogers Pass Information Center, where we talked with the rather lonely park ranger and enjoyed interesting exhibits on avalanches and the C&P railroad, both of which are very prominent in this area of the world. The amount of snow on the ground was staggering. Apparently there had been a bumper crop of it that winter. In the photo with the flag, that's the top of a roof that's almost lost to view because of the snow drift in front of the building.

 

Natural Bridge (I think...)

 

Emerald Lake

Yoho Park

 

Yes, that's a roof!

Lotsa snow!

   

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