It is now peak season here in the Rocky Mountains and there are many activities to enjoy and sights (and animals) to see! Takakkaw Falls, the second highest waterfall in Canada, is flowing at full capacity over Mount Niles and all the beautiful mountain wildflowers are in full bloom, taking advantage of the short growing season.
With the steady warm weather, the snowpack is finally melting, making many higher-altitude trails now accessible, including Twin Falls, Iceline, Whaleback, and Burgess Pass to name a few in the local area. If you do hike up to the historic Twin Falls, be sure to time your hike to include a stop at the teahouse where Fran serves tea and snacks between 12 and 3pm daily. She lives at the little chalet all summer and always has stories to share!
All the melting snow has made our Kicking Horse River high and fast – perfect for whitewater rafting just 30 minutes from our lodge. I have gone rafting three times so far this summer, and my latest trip (last week) was by far the most fun I’ve had rafting! The river was fast, the rapids were thrilling, and everyone had a fantastic time - I would highly recommend it if you like a little excitement!
Apart from hiking and rafting, there are so many other activities to enjoy: horseback riding along a mountain trail is always popular, canoeing, fishing, biking, golf, helicopter tours, and ziplining are all great things to do within an hour drive from Cathedral Mountain Lodge.
I must say, if you are fairly new to hiking and mountain climbing, the thrill you get from climbing your first peak is an absolutely grand and, I must admit, humbling experience. Two nights ago, a couple of our staff and I set out to climb the trail to Paget Peak. We left around 6:30 pm, wanting to be up there for the beginning of the sunset, while still making it back before complete darkness. Two other hikers passed us on our way up, saying they just saw a Grizzly bear and her cub and that we should turn around, but we had bear spray and weren’t going to where they came from and honestly, we wanted to hike to the peak, so we kept going. We never saw the bear, although we did see its footprints. After an hour, we reached the Paget fire lookout, the oldest remaining fire lookout in the Rockies. From there we kept climbing up the side of the mountain until we reached the very top. It was cold and windy, but so amazing! Having a 360-degree view of the Yoho Valley and surrounding peaks was incredible:
Whatever adventure you choose while you are here in Canada’s Mountain National Parks will surely bring a smile to your face and probably a few “Wow”s from your mouth. Just make sure you bring a camera, because you never know when you will see wildlife! I came across this deer while I was biking along a trail near Emerald Lake:
Thanks for reading and happy exploring!