Banff & Johnston Canyon – Photos Aug30

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Banff & Johnston Canyon – Photos

After our delightful day at the lakes, we hooked back up with the RV and headed another hour down the highway to the town of Canmore. The Worldmark was perched at the top of a hill overlooking the city, and yet still underneath the incredible mountains which were in view no matter where you were in town.

The view from the entrance of the Worldmark

The view from the entrance of the Worldmark

It was a fairly late arrival for us and not only did we need to bring in all our laundry and clothes for the week, but we needed to empty the fridge so that we could shut everything off in the rig while it was parked. Even with the luggage cart, we made close to 10 trips from the RV to our room which was on the sixth floor. Once we got everything into the room, priority number one was a cocktail, priority number two, laundry. We’d saved up all our dirty clothes for a while, knowing that the Worldmark would have free machines. Many of our campgrounds have coin-op machines which we use, but it’s a couple bucks per load and not always the nicest equipment.

Buried in laundry

Buried in laundry

We slept in, had a lazy morning and then spent our first day in town wandering through the shops and galleries in Canmore and taking care of some errands, namely grocery shopping and bike maintenance. We were expecting Ann and Jen to arrive the next day, but not until the late afternoon, so we made a plan to get up early and drive out to Johnston Canyon for a long hike. We’d read about it in our Canada book, it is one of the most popular hikes in Banff National Park and it lived up to all our expectations.

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The trail followed the river upwards for 2 miles on both dirt and canyon-clinging catwalks that hung out over the rushing water. We reached Lower Falls first. A bridge across the creek allowed us to view the falls face to face, and then we crawled through a short tunnel through the canyon bedrock for an even closer look (albeit a wetter one).

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Another mile up, we reached Upper Falls, also viewable from a bridge across the creek. There was quite a log jam there, probably from the recent flooding. You can continue up another 2 miles to view the Ink Pots, which are cold mineral springs, but the crowds and the bugs had descended upon us, and lunch was waiting back in the car.

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What better way to follow a long, wonderful, hot hike and lunch, than with a soak in a hot spring. We parked & wandered around downtown Banff for a while, which consists mostly of a handful of streets packed with stores and restaurants. Then we drove up the hill side to the Banff Upper Hot Springs.

Located in the town of Banff, in Alberta’s Banff National Park, the Banff Upper Hot Springs has all the amenities of a modern facility in a splendid historic spa and bath house – against a backdrop of Banff National Park’s spectacular alpine scenery. You can relax in the comfort of soothing, natural hot springs where travelers have come to “take the waters” for more than a century.

The Banff Upper Hot Springs is one of Banff’s most famous attractions; discovered in 1884, the hot springs were included in Banff National Park, the first National Park in Canada.

– Courtesy of http://www.pc.gc.ca/voyage-travel/sources-springs/banff/banff.aspx

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