Hello friends!! To be perfectly honest, I sit here typing up this post in a hostel in Calgary. However, I will likely be at my sister’s place in Ottawa when this post actually goes up.
I’m a tad sad that my mountain adventure has drawn to an end. I’ve had a fabulous time exploring new corners of the world with people I’ve never met, yet already know will be good friends with forever.
My recaps of the trip thus far can be found here, here and here. It’s been an experience I’ll never forget – and I feel the need to recap it not just for my readers, but so I have a record of it all for myself.
Let’s get to it – shall we? ;)
Today’s post is all about probably the most beautiful spot we visited here in Alberta – Lake Louise.
Holly, Karen and I started early Sunday morning after a rocky nights sleep in the tent. We didn’t buy many additional groceries for camping, so I threw together a mishmash of things to make a decent breakfast.
This would be an almond butter sandwich on the Silver Hills bread. with the lovely addition of straight up soy protein powder. Yes, I sprinkled it right onto the sandwich. I’m weird, because I really dug this.
Now please prepare yourself for a slew of earth shattering scenery.
Meet Lake Louise. A lake located about an hour from the town of Banff.
The area is just simply stunning. I love how the mountains on either side come down to frame the lake, and the white-capped glacier in the back. Of course, there’s also the signature turquoise water…
There’s a trail that leads to the back of the lake and you can hike up to the glacier. We ended up walking an hour along the lake, soaking up the sights.
Fuelling up with some Canadian made protein bars along the way ;)
This is the view from the back of the lake. That’s the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise off in the distance. Can you imagine staying there and waking up to this view every day??
The lake wasn’t the only eye candy. The shirtless rock climbers didn’t hurt ;)
By the time we made it back to the other side of the lake, we decided we were much to hungry to wait and find a cheap place to eat. I mean, when you’re at the Chateau Lake Louise, you might as well live it up.
We chose the tea room upstairs to eat, and were seated on the balcony with this stunning view:
Holly, Karen and I all talked ourselves into getting the Afternoon Tea… but appaaarently you need to book that sort of thing in advance. So we just settled on individual pots of tea.
I got the cinnamon apple spice. Usually, my favourite kind of tea, but there was a lot of sweetener already in the tea – honey probably.
Pip pip! (It’s what the English say Holly!!! :P )
We didn’t just drink tea though. Ohno. For we were also here to feast. Expensively.
I went for the Smoke Gouda Reuben: thinly sliced brisket, braised red cabbage, dijon mustard on light rye bread, caraway & ale mustard dip.
When in Lake Louise, right?
SO GOOD. I tried a brisket at the beginning of the trip and was still kinda “meh” about it. But this brisket was smoked. I love any and all smoked meats. Especially on this sandwich.
Soon after we said goodbye to Karen (sadface!) who had a job to return to (jobs?? what are those? :P ) Holly and I trekked along without her.
Starting from Lake Louise, we hiked up one of the side mountains to Lake Agnes. Mostly because there was a teahouse at the top. How cute is that!?
The hike wasn’t that bad. A little steep, but only about an hour long. Let me tell you, nothing like a trail on an incline to remind you just how in shape you really are.
But we made it!!
There was tons of snow at Lake Agnes which made it even more fun.
And a waterfall on the other side pouring down the mountain.
Every mountain should come with its own quaint teahouse at the top.
Holly and I were actually too hot to drink tea and were pretty bummed when we found out they were all out of lemonade. Boo!
We chose the trail less traveled on the way back down. Erm, it may be less traveled for a reason. But we found some new pretty views!
On our way down, Holly and I had a very serious discussion about what to do for dinner back at the Lake Louise campsite. All we had left on us were items we brought for snacks. With our imaginations combined, we came up with grilled pita pizzas.
Ohyes my friends.
On one side we have a pita with an almond butter sauce, topped with green apple and dried apricots.
On the other side we have a pita with an almond butter sauce and chocolate cherry trail mix topping.
Sweet melty action. Omg.
And because a dessert pizza requires a dessert…
We then fell back into a food and sugar coma and watched the clouds pass us by.
Another perfect end to another perfect day in the Canadian Rockies!
Thank you for indulging me in my vacay recaps!! I’ll be back with our final day in Banff and a fun blogger meet-up in Calgary. And of course – all the fun goings on here in Ottawa!! I’m in Ottawa until the end of the month before I move to Toronto, so let me know if you’re in the area and up for a meet-up! :)
Question of the Day: What’s your favourite kind of tea? Spiced apple is mine! Chai and peppermint aren’t far behind though.
Well, Holly and I are back after a weekend of camping in the Canadian Rockies. We haven’t showered in a while and reek of campfire. But we both agreed that blogging would come first ;) LOVE travelling with fellow bloggers!
Saturday started off with another one of our now famous maple-y oatmeal concoctions.
I believe this was Nature’s Path cinnamon raisin oatmeal cooked with soy protein powder and a banana. Topped with maple fudge, cinnamon peanut butter and maple jelly. Every bowl of oatmeal now must be topped with fudge. I’m ruined.
Saturday was our first legitimately beautiful day weather-wise. Around 23 C and not a cloud in the sky.
We couldn’t see the mountains very well when we first arrived, but they popped in the sunshine. Here’s another shot of the main strip in Banff with Cascade Mountain in the back. Never gets old!!
We hit up Evelyn’s Coffee Bar for our morning coffee. Holly and I are a little useless without that one (big) cuppa joe in the a.m.
The heat called for an iced latte with skim milk, an extra shot of espresso and sugar-free vanilla syrup. Hit the spot, fine work Evelyn ;)
Somehow, after coffee, we ended up wandering into this tea shop called the Banff Tea Co.
There were probably a hundred different kinds of loose teas lining the walls. Every sort of flavour you can imagine. The little canisters in the front were for smelling – I whiffed on a lot!
I’m not a big-time tea person, but I definitely appreciate a spot like this. It was so cute!!
Karen is a huge soccer fan and was excited about Saturday’s US-England World Cup match. So we all agreed to watch some of the game at a local pub/restaurant.
Navigating menus on this trip has been so hard. Everything looks absolutely delicious. We haven’t been doing much snacking – mostly just three big meals a day to keep us fuelled for long spurts of activity. Saturday’s lunch was chosen with just that in mind ;)
Manitoba Bison Bruger? Yesplease!
I haven’t been overly concerned with choosing low-cal or super healthy foods on this trip – but doing things like asking for the mayo on the side, or getting the bun un-buttered at least helps the cause a little.
Omg. This burger was spectacular. Second favourite meal of the trip thus far (elk stew still sitting at number one) Bison is a really lean meat, so it can sometimes end up on the dry side. But this burger was thick, juicy, and perfectly seasoned with spices reminiscent of a sausage. YUM.
And let’s not forget our vegetables ;)
Sweet potato fries count… right??
Dessert were goodies we spied with our little eyes at the Wild Flour Bakery.
Raw desserts have always intrigued me, and cinnamon rolls are one of my fave treats!
It came with a soy frosting. Unfortunately, this was not great. A little bland from being made with ground flax, and waaaay lacking on the cinnamon.
Karen got an almond square that was a little better.
I think the chocolate coating was made partially with dates? And the base was coconut based. Oddly enough, after all the meat I’ve been eating, the raw desserts have so far been the most disappointing!
A guy working at the hostel recommended we go up and check out Lake Minnewanka just a short drive up the road from the town Banff. Karen had her car with her… so why not?
Moi et Karen:
Minnewanka Lake is a glacial lake fed by the Cascade River.The water here is the most gorgeous shade of turquoise. I’ve been trying desperately to capture it properly on film, but it just won’t work.
Even the gorgeous shimmers in the water are dulled on film.
We also checked out Two Jack Lake just a hop skip and a jump away. Everywhere you turn here, there is something more beautiful from the last!
There were also an unusual amount of goats in the area.
I think we saw around 30 altogether? Don’t be fooled by these creatures. They may look cute from afar, but their eyes are bright orange. Creepy.
After much wandering, we eventually hit the road for Tunnel Mountain.
The Tunnel Mountain Campground is also very close to the town of Banff. Many of the trails in the area lead straight through the town.
However, we were more concerned about setting up camp.
But we’re pros and got the tent up in no time!
This is where I conveniently leave out the part that the folks at the mountain equipment store gave us a tutorial on how to set it up ;)
We also learned that coolers are not bear proof.
No worries here though, for coolers are much too classy for gals like us ;)
Holly claims she’s a dolt when it comes to campfires, but the old camp counsellor had one flaring immediately.
My only experience in lighting fires is doing it in my kitchen :P
Between the three of us, we pretty much had enough snacks to forage together a meal.
I opted for a sandwich – campfire style.
One half consisted of gouda cheese and sundried tomato tuna.
The other half was almond butter + gouda.
Amazing combo you guys!!!! The unsweetened almond butter paired perfectly with the melty cheese. Don’t just take my word for it – try it!!
Karen also had the brilliant idea of pairing smoked salmon pate with Mary’s Herb Crackers.
And of course – what’s camping without a brew??
We opted for the Big Rock Pale Ale as a pale seemed perfect for some fireside drinking. Big Rock is an Alberta beer too – thumbs up!
Honourable mention goes to the seedy bread we enjoyed with dinner.
Silver Hills Bakery sent me some coupons to try their bread a while back, but I couldn’t find any in New Brunswick. We found a wide array of their breads at Nester’s Food Market here in Banff. I immediately remembered those coupons and Silver Hills came to the rescue!!
All of their breads are sprouted grain, but not frozen like your more popular ezekiel brand. The Hardy Hearty Harvest seemed like the perfect choice for hiking and camping, you can check out the stats and ingredients here. The bread is Susan, Holly and Karen approved! Can’t wait to try out some of the other varieties!
A tired Susan, but a happy Susan :)
This is where this post ends… but I’ll be back with Part 2 of our Camping Adventure – Lake Louise!
See you soon!!
Question of the Day: What’s your favourite camping food? Mine is beer by the fire. Beer totally counts as food.