Whirlpool Camp ~ Jasper, Alberta

This was the first time I took Mya along with me and for those of you who do not already know who Mya is she is my chocolate lab aka. Crazy Brown Dog She has gone car camping with me multiple times but never back country and she was defiantly up for the challenge

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One happy pup about to hit the trail

With Whirlpool campground being at the  6.5kms mark along the Athabasca Pass Trail it was the perfect opportunity to take Mya and a few ridiculous luxury items as well.

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Yes that is a frying pan and eggs

The trail follows an old fire road so its easy to follow. Near the beginning of the trail you pass by Moab Lake which is fishable.

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This campground is very primitive.  No luxury of the green throne here … You guessed it only a hole in the ground and a log for you to perch on. For some this might be a deal breaker but I have to say it was not all that bad.

This was the first time I got to use my Mountain Hardwear Optic Vue 3.5 and I have to say I love it. It was a little big for just Mya and I but would be perfect for two people and a four legged companion or three people.

Our weather was wet and windy but it kept the mosquitoes away that we found during our day hike a little further up the trail.

We came across a couple of these torn up trees that had been stripped by a porcupine. Something I had never seen before. I found it fascinating.

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Mya was unsure on how she was to react to the bird that was chasing us down the trail.

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Parts of the trail past Whirlpool where very wet, it looked like a creek had rerouted itself to follow the trail. There is also a log crossing that for myself was more difficult than I had expected. The log was wet and it crossed over a raging creek. Stop over to  Stop Nothing But Time to see her post about our trip for a couple of images from this spot.

Our steak and egg supper was by far the best back country food I have yet

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Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park

Last year my friend Sarah over at Stop Nothing but Time
convinced me to hike the Berg Lake Trail with her, her son and Nephew.

I sure am glad I did!

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

Mount Robson

This was one of those hikes that when you see the pictures it instantly gets added to the bucket list. So when opportunity struck the planning began.

You MUST reserve your spot well in advance

With this years hike already booked and in the planning stages it is already very evident that things this year will be different beginning with length of time on the trail and the biggest difference for me is that my daughter will be joining me
The plan
To hike to Whitehorn Campground and then up to Emperor Falls campground where we will spend two nights and use it as a base camp for a day hike into Berg Lake
The idea of breaking up the hike in is one I am thankful for this time around. Having my daughter with me I need to remember not to push too hard or she will not have fun. Her having fun and enjoying this trip is the most important part.
 
Trail Head to Kinney Lake Campground; 7kms; Easy
The beginning of the trail from the trail head to the the first camp at Kinney Lake will take you thru an old growth Cedar/Hemlock forest along an easy trail. This portion of the trail is used for Day use hikes where bikes and Dogs are allowed. Both of these are not permitted past Kinney Lake.

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

A short dip of the hands to cool down

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

Taking a moment to soak the feet

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

Sarah explaining where we were headed

Kinney Lake Camp to Whitehorn Camp; 4km; moderate

The trail that continues on from Kinney Lake narrows and becomes a little more technical than the first section. There is a bike Rack at this point for those who chose to bike the first 7kms in. It is here that you can take one of two trails. One will take you along the flood plain but is not always passable so make sure you check at the visitor center before you hit the trail if this is an option or not. If it is not then you take the higher ground where you will hike across boulder fields and across landslide areas.

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

A sign along the way reminding us to be careful

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

The suspension bridge into Whitehorn Camp

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

Shelter at Whitehorn Camp

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Whitehorn Camp to Emperor Falls Camp; 5km; Moderate to Difficult
I won’t lie this portion of the trail is my least favorite. From Whitehorn Camp to the start of the Switchback up the mountain is a nice leisurely stroll along the river where you start the trek up the hill thru the Valley of a Thousand Falls. I recommend you take your time and go at your own pace up and make sure to take in the different view opportunities. Near the top is where you will get to the short side trail that will take you into the powerful Emperor Falls. This section of Trail is very wet and slippery due to the moisture being thrown off of the falls. Take your time and it is all worth it.
*Make sure to fill up with water as Whitehorn is the last available water source before going up the Hill.

The Emperor Falls Campground is 500m past the trail to the Falls.

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Do not forget to fill up your water

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Looking down towards Whitehorn Camp

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
First glimpse of Emperor Falls

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Emperor Falls Roaring below Mount Robson

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Time for a nap

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
The mist from the Falls feels amazing
Emperor Falls to Marmot Camp; kms; Easy to Moderate

When leaving Emperor Falls camp and heading towards Berg Lake you will pass thru Marmot Camp which is located at the south end of the lake. To get there you hike thru the valley and along the flats. This is one of my favorite sections of the trail. It was wide open and the views were breathtaking

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
I loved the trail between Emperor and Marmot

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
The flats between Emperor camp and Marmot

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Stopping for water

 

Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
 
Marmot Camp to Berg Lake Camp; kms; Moderate

 

From Marmot to Berg Lake the trail will take you thru the trees along the Lake to get to the other side.  There are numerous look outs along the way to stop and it all in. Once to the other side of the Lake you have arrived at Berg Lake Campground. From here there are many other Options for day hikes as well as two other Campgrounds.
Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
The first view of Berg Lake from Marmot Camp

Berg Lake

If you hike to and stay at Berg Lake you will have many options for day hikes. There are also two more camps past there. Many people hike all the way to Berg Lake and use it as a base for the many hikes from there. Berg Lake Camp has a shelter and outhouses
Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
Other Options:
Last year I did part of the Tobaggan Falls. This year I plan on doing all of it. As the years pass I would like to explore all of these other options
Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
My view from the Tobaggan Falls Trail
Info taken from BC Parks for the other options listed below
Hargreaves Lake Route (1/2 day): From Marmot campsite near Berg Lake, this route climbs to Hargreaves Lake and Glacier. From the viewpoint, the trail continues and crosses the Toboggan Falls Route on course to the Mumm Basin.
 
Toboggan Falls Route (2 hours, return): From the trailhead at the Toboggan Creek bridge near Berg Lake campsite, the trail climbs to Toboggan Falls and the surrounding alpine basin. This route intersects the Hargreaves Lake and Mumm Basin routes. Continue up beyond this junction for an extra 45 minutes and you will reach a small cave.
 
Mumm Basin Route (1/2 day): A steep alpine trail leads to views of the alpine lakes, mountains and glaciers. The trail can start or end in Robson Pass or Berg Lake campsites.
 
Snowbird Pass Route (1 day): Snowbird Pass is closed May and June due to caribou calving. A challenging route marked by rock cairns (caution required), it provides spectacular views of the back of Mount Robson. From berg Lake campsite the trip is 22 km, return. Start north of Rearguard campsite, follow Robson River then travel up to Robson Glacier’s moraine. Hike up to an alpine meadow, beyond which is Snowbird Pass.

 

Moose River Route (7 days): This route should be attempted only by well-equipped, experienced hikers as river crossings and route finding are required. This 105 km route can be accessed via Berg Lake, through Robson Pass onto Adolphus Lake continuing on the Jasper National Park trail system. The route takes you over Moose Pass back into Mount Robson Park and down the Moose River to Hwy 16 near its confluence with the Fraser River. For day hikers, trips along this trail offer view of Adolphus Lake (7 km return, to Berg Lake) or Coleman Valley (26 km, return, to Berg Lake).
Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia
A winter View
I strongly recommend you head over to Stop Nothing but Time and give it a read for a more detailed account of gear and preparations
If you ever get the chance to experience what this area has to offer take it
Fun fact
Mount Robson Provincial Park, is included within the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks as a UNESCO world heritage site
 Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia            Hiking the Berg Lake Trail ~ Mount Robson Provincial Park ~ Beautiful British Columbia

 



Trial & Error = Lessons Learned

With training for next years summer Hiking season already well underway, today was a day full of lessons learned.

I pack up my bag, load up the pups into the truck and pick up my friend Sarah Burns over at Stop Nothing But Time for our first hike into the WillmoreI have been up here before hiking into Jasper National Park instead. 

Its not long into our hike before I start to realize this will not only be an absolutely beauty of a day but I will learn a lot.

 

Wild Hay River
 
Lesson 1: Always remember your trekking poles
This is the one item that I have been on the fence about for some time now. I currently own a cheaper set of poles that I have used periodically along the hikes closer to home. With today being the first real hike of the winter season with approx. 4″ of snow on the ground and a couple of nice inclines and declines carrying a pack at 18lbs (remember I mentioned in training) poles would have been a great tool to have along.
 
Lesson 2: Remember a ball for crazy brown dog
Seems a bit strange.. I know to say having a ball would be a lesson learned. For those of you who know me already will understand this statement. For those of you who do not,  you soon will. Mya affectionately known as Crazy Brown Dog is my 2.5 year old Chocolate Lab. Like most Labs out there she is full of Spunk and even after a good long hike will want to play fetch when we stop. A good ball (Kong Extreme Ball is one of our favorites) is the best way to keep her occupied while I prepare lunch. Whether it is for fetch or to just have a good chew session with. 
 

 

 
Lesson 3: When reheating Mocha pay attention
Do I really need to explain this one!
I boiled it over and made a huge mess 
 
Lesson 4: Bring blanket for The Old Boy 
This one is another dog related lesson. Sam my black Lab is officially a Senior. At the age of 11 years young he refuses to stay home. Granted he wont be tagging along on heavy hiking days but can easily still handle 10 kms a day. He does deserve a nice blanket to call his own and to help keep him comfortable. Even if he is camera shy and refuses to give me any pictures! 
 
Will I always take my dogs?
 YOU BET….Having them with me even if it means I have to carry a little extra is well worth it. Their company and antics are something that I do not ever want to be without.
 
I am sure that there will be more lessons to be learned and I will happily learn them as long as it means getting outdoors and enjoying my time away to rejuvenate my soul.

Beauty Creek to Stanley Falls

A moderate yet short hike at approx. 4kms to Stanley Falls and back, with no shortage of breathtaking views.
 The trail starts at a road side turn out approximately 88km south of Jasper, Alberta along hwy 93.
Watch for the two large culverts going under the road in the Flats coming from Jasper you will pass by the Beauty Creek Hostel before arriving at the Trail Head.
Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Berm

 

Follow the berm across the flats and thru the trees where you will connect with the old section of Hwy. The Hwy here was rerouted back in the 1960’s before the relocation of the Icefields Parkway and until the relocation this trail would have been a roadside attraction.
Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Old Hwy
Continue along the old Hwy till you get to the end where the trail turns off to the left and you start up the canyon, if your not sure just watch for the arrow made of rocks pointing you in the right direction. If you miss the arrow no worries you don’t go far to where the road ends and the bridge is no longer there to get across Beauty Creek.
Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Sarah Burns from Stop Nothing But Time taking a moment to enjoy the view
Almost immediately you can hear and see the picturesque beauty that makes this hike well worth the time it took us to get here.
Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada

 

There are no barriers here and to get some of the best views of the falls you must get very close to the edge of the rock.
Always use appropriate caution

 

Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Jax taking in the view
Even though this is a short hike allow yourself lots of time to explore and stop to just enjoy. At any given moment you could see anyone of us exploring different areas with such joy that it reminded me of a bunch of teenage girls!

 

Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Chris enjoying everything this hike has to offer.
Her smile says it all

 

 

Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
The official Trail ends at the unmarked Stanley Falls.
Beauty Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada
Stanley Falls
The trail does continue past Stanley Falls to another waterfall that we had seen pictures of. This section of trail is not for the faint of heart, it turns into a very narrow and sometimes almost completely washed out goat trail. After traveling a short distance down the trail we realized that we did not have the comfort level or equipment to attempt going any farther.
So we found ourselves a nice spot along the waters edge had some lunch and began the trek back.
This is definitely a place that will be on my yearly list. I am already planning my next visit back there to take my family, as this is a definite must for anyone in the area. It never fails to amaze me how lucky I am to live in an area that provides you with such natural beauty.

Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 Hoodoo Trail, Hinton Alberta

Why have I not taken advantage of this place before? On a whim I decide that today is the day to get off the couch and hit the trail. With two preteen girls, a friend and three dogs all loaded into the truck we hit the road for the almost hour long drive to check out the hoodoos along the Wild Scripture Trail
 So what makes me want to do this trail …. the Hoodoos of course! But after further investigation of the map I realize that this trail can offer so much more than just a spectacular view, Which is the plan for another day!
The Lake Trail : takes you along the valley below the hoodoos and is the longest at almost 10 kms with three back country campsites (I have not traveled into any of these locations)
The Hoodoo Trail : takes you along the base of the hoodoos and provides you with great views of  the  hoodoos, but does cut off a portion of the hoodoos themselves.
The Skyline Trail : takes you along the entire ridge of the hoodoos with breathtaking views.


Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail

                         

I decided that this trip we would hike The Hoodoo Trail it is easy to follow and has been well used. Once we branched off from the Lake Trail onto the Hoodoos Trail the trail continued to be easy to follow but I would suggest long pants or gators as the brush was starting to overgrow in some sections and rubs against your legs. The Hoodoo trail takes you along the base of the hoodoos and is narrow and a bit sandy in some sections which during the wet season can cause for some slippery areas. There were signs that were posted at the “Y” ‘s to allow you to choose which trail you wanted to take, which I really liked.

 

Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail
So what did I like most about this Hike?
What wasn’t there to like?
Fresh air, Beautiful views, knowing your in a place that is virtually untouched by humans and best of all quality time with my daughter and niece
 Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail
 Even the dogs took a moment to relax and enjoy the surroundings. 
 
 Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail

 

 A glimpse of the view advantage from the Skyline trail
Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail
Everyone is Happy and Tired

Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Part 1 The Hoodoo Trail

I am definitely looking forward to going back here to explore the other trails!
And remember ….
Always be prepared before heading out into the woods.
More information can be found at Alberta Parks

Stay safe and Have fun!!!!

Happy Hiking!

Wild Sculpture Trail ~ Hoodoos