a waterfall on the upper Athabasca River, approximately 30 kilometres south of the townsite of Jasper.
Jasper and our hotel for two nights Chateau Jasper.
The following morning was crisp and a little cold so we wrapped up and boarded the coach for a trip to Maligne Canyon, a natural feature eroded out of the Palliser Formation, the canyon measures over 50 metres (160 ft) high.
The smaller streams that feed the valley below that point rebuild the river by the time it reaches the top of the canyon.
(flowing from Maligne Lake into the Athabasca River) backs up and suddenly disappears underground. During the summer months during intensified meltwater runoff the lake (which during the winter months is a meandering frozen river) fills to levels which fluctuate over time and with the runoff events. Much like a bathtub that is filled too fast for it to drain, it becomes laden with water (lake) until it can slowly drain as the tap flow (runoff) is reduced (river).
The underground system is extensive and during the 1970s researchers used a biodegradable dye to determine the underground river's extent. The dye showed up in many of the lakes and rivers in the area to the point where it became clear that the underground system was one of the most extensive in the world.
Next we went to the breathtaking Maligne Lake, famed for the colour of its water
Spirit Island, one of the most photographed locations in the world. Maligne Lake takes its name from the French word for malignant or wicked. The name was used by Father Pierre-Jean De Smet (1801–1873) to describe the turbulent river that flows from the lake (in the spring), and soon spread to the lake, canyon, pass, mountain and range. It is also possible that early French traders applied the name to the river for its treacherous confluence with the Athabasca River.
We had a cruise on the lake to look forward to, so we purchased some sandwiches and a soft drink from the restaurant to take with us, then took our boat ride to the island. The next photographs were taken from there.
Being, by now, late afternoon, it was time to board the coach once again to return to the hotel where we just had time to freshen up and change before joining our fellow guests on the tour for a complimentary dinner at the hotel. After dinner we were treated to a very interesting talk by a local wildlife expert. Everyone retired reasonably early as we had to be at the station in Jasper for 8.30 the following morning to take the next exciting leg of our journey, one which had really been the deciding factor, for us, when booking the holiday.
Join me next time for Canada Part 4 and The Rocky Mountaineer!