The Canadian Rockies region is one of the most stunning places on the planet. Full of jagged peaks and colorful lakes, wildflowers and glaciers, it is an area that never fails to awe and inspire my passengers. I have often been asked what my favorite photo spot is on our Western Canada tours and that is really hard to answer.
But of all the photos I’ve taken over the years, I would definitely say the lakes are what define the area for me. And while I may not be able to pick a favorite, I can definitely pick a few that, no matter how many times I’ve seen them, still take my breath away every time.
Peyto Lake, off of the Icefields Parkway, is considered one of the most colorful lakes in the Canadian Rockies. Named after Wild Bill Peyto, a legendary mountain guide, it is a must-stop on the way from Banff to Jasper.
Emerald Lake in Yoho National Park is another of my favorites. Quieter than many of the lakes, it is the starting point for many wonderful hikes. A walk around the lake or a canoe ride is always good as well.
Of course everyone knows Lake Louise, “the Gem of the Canadian Rockies”, and it does not disappoint. With an amazing V-shaped valley exposing the glaciers above, it has definitely earned its reputation.
Nearby Moraine Lake has always been one I look forward to seeing. The mountains come all the way down into the lake. It is truly something to behold.
Further north in Jasper National Park, there are a dozen beautiful lakes including the Valley of Five Lakes which makes for an excellent half-day hike. But it is Maligne Lake which has always had my heart. Secluded up a long mountain road, it doesn’t get anywhere near the visitation many of the other lakes do, but it is offers magnificent views.
And the last one I will show you is well off the beaten track. Sherbrooke Lake in Yoho is a few miles up a somewhat unknown trail. The last time I was there I was completely alone in mountain splendor for a whole hour. It was amazing.
Come north, my friends, and spend some time in the magnificent Canadian Rockies. The mountains are truly spectacular, but it’s the lakes that keep me coming back for more.
Mike Harding, Tour Leader