Canada – The Emerald Lakes And Peaks Of Banff

It was my last day in Canada for this trip. I had been on the beautiful prairies, down rivers and up in the air. However, I had one day to get in and amongst the Canadian Rocky Mountains. I just had to get there and see, yes, one day is so not enough but I could treat it as a recce and wet the appetite to come back. And, Crikey! .. Yes I will be back. The things I saw and felt, in just a few hours, on one day, in just a small part of the area has given me a longing wish to head back and get out for days on foot.

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Banff National Park was established in 1885 and was the first national park of Canada. An area I can confidently state as absolute beauty. Where should I start? Well many had told me about a couple of lakes beyond imagination, so off to the waters edges I headed.

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Moraine Lake

Any of you that have been Moraine Lake will know what I mean when I say you just have to go.. stand.. on.. that.. spot! It was early, thankfully had missed the mad rush for the crowds wanting to take the pic. Sitting there, the sun still hidden behind the mountains, the first rays hitting the trees opposite on the valley. A moment I felt very very lucky indeed.

Looking at the pics it is not hard to see why it is called The Valley of The Ten Peaks. Ten very prominent peaks lining the valley above the gorgeous blue waters of the lake created by glacial waters coming down.

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Lake Louise

Lake Louise is another fine sight. A lot more bustle going on around here due to the large and grand hotel. Walk around the edge, find a quiet spot.. and sit, relax. Emerald colours again strike the eyes as you look across the water. The rocks high above grinded by glaciers create a rock flour that comes down river and is held suspended in the water of the lakes. Light helps do the rest for the effect. There are hikes high and/or along for miles and miles here. Some restricted for sole hiking due to grizzly bears but having listened to experts and read advice I would more than happily set off with friends out into some amazing landscapes.

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The things to see/do grows much and vastly beyond lakesides. Why not take dinner in Lake Louise Railway Station? Yes an old railway station that was part of the Canadian Pacific Railway Line. The line that has helped shape Banff and the area into the popular, and rightly popular place we see today.

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Or you can take a view of the area from way up and up.. The Lake Louise Gondola. Quite lazy for me to sit down up a mountain but wanted to squeeze these views in 🙂 The ride up to the viewpoint is one of the most common ways people get to see grizzly bears in the wild. I was unfortunate not to see one, this is their turf, and wild creatures don’t appear on demand. Plus. The aim was to get up to the view, and a magnificent view. A final look over the Canadian Rocky Mountains, Lake Louise nestled in the middle of the panoramic before me. Deep breaths and time to reflect.

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I want to go back, I shall go back. Exploration of this place deserves to be done on many levels.

And for a calm, relaxing, homely overnight rest we had had the delights of Buffalo Mountain Lodge. Wood burning stone fireplace, king size beds and a patio with views like this…..

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Written by Paul Steele

Paul is the founder and Editor of the site. An avid hiker and trekker. Travel, adventure and photography are passions that he combines to make his articles here. Likes to see the positive in everything.


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  1. Couldn’t agree more Mary. Each time I feel envy and longing to go adventuring. And that Paul is because of you. I also feel grateful that you share with us. Thank you!

  2. Paul,

    You have an ability to take beautiful pictures and make the viewer feel as though they are actually there, not just looking at pictures. They are all amazingly beautiful, thank you for sharing and much luck on your continued adventures. Regards.

  3. Thanks so much for sharing all with the awesome info! I am looking forward to checking out far more posts! gbeeagkffkke

  4. Just last week I discovered you on Twitter talking about your lovely bassett
    Hounds (more please). I live in Vancouver, British Columbia, and have
    Gone through the Rockies on the train quite a few times. These are beautiful photos
    And I hope you do return (and write more about the bassetts).

  5. A beautiful place and wonderful pictures! So sad at what the area is going through right now with the flooding.

  6. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous. Canada has to be one of my favourite places in the world for its sheer natural beauty. Wonderful post 🙂

  7. Hello. Thanks for your views of a part of Canada. This country is huge and you have chosen one of it’s beautiful and amazing areas. Glad you didn’t encounter a grizzly. Come back again and maybe visit the west coast of BC before the Tar Sands pipelines are approved. 🙂

  8. Thanks for the lovely photos of Banff National Park. We are planning a trip there in the next couple of years so the photos help to keep my motivation to save up the money!

  9. Amazing pictures. Canada is definitely full of a many awesome hiking trails. I wish I had time to visit them more often. There is always that peaceful content feeling. Especially if you look at that crystal clear water. It always amazes me, doesn’t matter how many times I see it. I haven’t been to Emerald lakes in a long time. I guess it´s time to change that.

  10. Like you I have only been to Banff/Lake Louise for a quick trip and have been trying to get back ever since. It is magnificient and peaceful at the same time. Your pictures are unbelievable. Thank you for sharing

  11. Fantastic clear stunning images of Banff Canadian lakes. Great job of capturing the essence of the area, been fortunate enough to have hiked the area. Thank you for sharing them to the world! A must place to visit!

  12. Hello Mr. Steel,
    I ve started to adore your pictures. Those objects you shot are favorites of mine..A trully visible testaments of God, that it bring somehow ‘lucky’ feeling. Thanks for sharing it, you might make people keep thinking that world still worth to live in. Mostly for people in some part of world where these views aren’t exist, but polutions and riots.
    Thanks and regards,

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