Friday, August 22, 2014

The Canadian Rockies Part 3: Waterton Lakes National Park

   I must first apologize as this will probably be the 3rd blog entry posted in the past day or two.  It was not intended to be timed this way, but the quality of Wi-Fi has been pretty poor throughout much of the past 2 weeks, causing me to wait till I got a good signal to get everything uploaded. 

     Our last installment to the Canadian Rockies series takes place in Waterton Lakes National Park, which is part of the Glacier Waterton Lakes International Peace Park.  As such we are within about 30 minutes of the Montana border. 

     Waterton Lakes is a small park on the scale of things, but it is nonetheless stunningly beautiful.  It surrounds a series of lakes while nestled between magnificent mountain ranges.  The inside road ends at the village of Waterton Lake on the shore of the biggest lake. 

     As has been our luck the weather was rainy or cloudy much of the time so there will not be much blue sky seen in our pictures.  We arrived to find there were absolutely no camping sites left in the park.  Our ranger advised us to go 10 miles south to Belly River to boondock there, but alas nothing was available there either.  We returned just outside the village of Waterton Lakes to the Waterton Springs RV Park who let us boondock in their back field for $15 @ night.  We even had access to a water spigot, Wi-Fi, and the dump station when we left.  We operated off our generator for the 3 days as there wasn’t enough solar power to charge a pack of ‘D’ cell batteries. 

     Our 2nd day we traveled a road outside the park which led up the Akamina Parkway to Cameron Lake.  This road winds and gains in elevation as you leave the village through a canyon for about 7 miles to the lake.  The area teams with wildlife and we slowed down for a bachelor group of 3 Bighorn Sheep that believed they were the only ones entitled to the right of way. 

     The lake sits in an amphitheater of mountains high in a pass west of the village.  It is a very popular place for canoers, kayakers, and fisherman.  Spectacular ‘thrust upheaval’ geological evidence can be seen in the mountains here.  There is also a very nice waterfall just below the lake. 

   Returning to the village we spent a bit touring the Prince of Wales Hotel.  This is the lodging centerpiece of the park.  It sits on a bluff providing a viewpoint for the mountains, lakes, and the village itself.  We were unable to get a price quote for this lodge, but I'm sure we couldn't afford it.   

Afterwards we did a bit of Barb’s norm (shopping), but I did con her into lunch in town.  The Fish Tacos at the Waterton Lake Village Opera House and Coffee Shop are to die for!  



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