For some obscure reason, we all started singing that old school Vanilla Ice song “Ice Ice Baby” a few days ago. Although we are all thankful that Hip Hop has greatly evolved since 1990 – no other song would be more appropriate to describe the kind of day that we just had. We left Banff, Alberta at the crack of dawn to drive up alongside the Icefield Parkway en route to Jasper National Park.
Highway 93 – easily one of the most beautiful drives in the world. If you leave Banff early enough in the morning, you might manage to avoid the tour buses parade. This road being the only road going through this slice of paradise, a perfectly timed departure is the key to success when it comes to feeling like you are lonesome on the top of the world. While having new friends waving their hands frantically in the background of your group shots can be fun, being alone in this practically untouched territory is as priceless as ice cream on a scorching hot summer day.
Keeping in mind that there was no actual road crossing the parkway until 1940, getting to feel like the first explorers while still having the luxury of a highway underneath your wheels can be considered quite a treat.
I often think about the first souls who said: “Let’s build a road here, people will want to come and have look at this.” I wonder how many times they have been referred to as completely out of their minds.
Welcome to the Athabasca Glacier. It has been nicknamed “the friendliest glacier in the Columbia Icefield”. What a well suited title. This glacier uses it’s good looks to persuade you to come closer to give it a good pet. Like most Canadians, I was born with a pair of ice skates on. Although ice skating is one of our national leisure pursuits, forget about skating and get your crampons on! This wonderful opportunity to experience the outback is as Canadian as it gets.
We had an absolutely perfect accent on the glacier today which included a romantic morning snowfall followed by an afternoon of glistening sun rays. You should have seen the clouds evaporating by mid-day. They did so in such a fashion that the National Geographic’s video team will forever be tormented that they’ve missed such an opportunity.
TrekAmerica group at the Athabasca Glacier
Athabasca Glacier, Canada
Athabasca Glacier TrekAmerica Montage