Canadian Rockies: a walk along the Bow River at Banff

Thursday was another day off skiing.  I don’t have the stamina or the lift pass to ski every day.  I took my skis in for a service – sharpen the edges and wax – and set out to follow a series of trails, first to the Bow River Falls downstream and then upstream, passed the town, diverting to the Cave and Basin and the wooden walkway system up the hillside to the hot springs which in 1883 first excited interest in what became Banff, and on towards Sundance Canyon.  I stopped short of the Canyon, intending to walk that another day and, after sitting on the dry rocks of the river bed kept clear of snow by another trickling hot spring, headed back by way of the ‘Marsh Loop’. Altogether about 8 miles in 5 hours with mooching around time and frequent photo-stops.   

That’s it for the words.  The rest is pictures.

Looking across the town bridge built in 1923, Cascade Mountain at the end of Banff Avenue, the Bow River partly snow covered,partly flowing water

Looking across the town bridge built in 1923, Cascade Mountain at the end of Banff Avenue, the Bow River partly snow covered, partly flowing water

Looking towards the town bridge from the new wooden pedestrian bridge

Looking towards the town bridge from riverside trail

The new wooden pedestrian bridge, completed last year

The new wooden pedestrian bridge, completed last year

Mild weather and fast flowing water breaks up the ice on the river as it rushed towards the falls

Mild weather and fast flowing water breaks up the ice on the river as it rushed towards the falls

More open water than usual in winter below the falls seen from the top of the crag alongside, Mount Rundle towering above

More open water than usual in winter below the falls seen from the top of the crag alongside, Mount Rundle towering above

Looking upstream to the frozen falls

Looking upstream to the frozen falls

Zooming in on the still rushing water on the right as it emerges from the ice

Zooming in on the rushing water on the right as it emerges from the ice

Immediately after the falls the river bends at right angles northeastwards towards the Fairholme Range

Immediately after the falls the river bends at right angles northeastwards towards the Fairholme Range

Upstream of teh town bridge the river is frozen solid enough for semi-permanent footpaths across

Upstream of the town bridge the river is frozen solid enough for semi-permanent footpaths across

On the recreation ground is the Banff Community Greenhouse, snowed in at this time of year

On the recreation ground is the Banff Community Greenhouse, snowed-in at this time of year

Snow blown across the rugby pitch drifts in the lee of the trees.  Either the pitch rivals Pontypools famous slope or the earth tilted on its axis as I took the shot

Snow blown across the rugby pitch drifts in the lee of the trees. Either the pitch rivals Pontypool RFCs famous slope or the earth tilted on its axis as I took the shot

A hot spring feeds this pool, a rare wildlife habitat

A hot spring feeds this pool, a rare wildlife habitat surrounded by snow

The topmost pool on the walkway is home to the unique Banff Springs Snail, Physella johnsoni

The topmost pool on the walkway is home to the unique and endangered Banff Springs Snail, Physella johnsoni

Looking across the snow-covered river to Mount Edith

Looking across the snow-covered river to Mount Edith

Another view showing the narrow open channel of running water

Another view showing the narrow open channel of running water

The vegetation along the bank

The vegetation along the bank

Standing on the ice in the middle of the river and looking downstream towards Cascade Mountain

Standing on the ice in the middle of the river and looking downstream towards Cascade Mountain

Mount Rundle seen across the Marsh Loop

Mount Rundle seen across the Marsh Loop

Riding stables backed by Cascade Mountain

Riding stables backed by Cascade Mountain

Horse-drawn sleigh offers rides to visitors

Horse-drawn sleigh offers rides to visitors

x

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Canada, Hiking, Landscape, Mountains, Winter and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Canadian Rockies: a walk along the Bow River at Banff

  1. Sartenada says:

    Awesome place and terrific photos.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s