Stayed over night at Snaring River Campground in Jasper National Park. It is located closest to Maligne Canyon and Lake where we spent the day. At Snaring River campground, the price was $15.90/night for a space (no hook-ups and no senior discount). Other campgrounds for RV’s here are a little more expensive than we paid. We saw a black bear just outside the campground so that made it interesting. Most National Parks we have been in do not allow boondocking so the designated campground was our only option save leaving the park. The campground was fine, quiet and completely dark an hour after we arrived (so we couldn’t even see our nearest neighbor) but it was smoke-filled as some one had a campfire that produced a tremendous amount of smoke.
Jasper National Park–
We started our day fairly early so saw some wildlife by the side of the road and we ended our day an hour before dark so had a chance to see more wildlife as we drove along. This park is huge and we are just hitting some of the highlights as outlined by the National Parks Visitor Center folks. I can imagine spending an entire summer just exploring this park there’s so much to see. Before we started sight-seeing we got gas at $4.53/gal. regular (price of gas for us is improving!).
We took the Maligne Road turn off in Jasper National Park. This is a good, paved, two lane road and leads to some of the many spectacular places in the park. Our favorites today were the Maligne Canyon and the Maligne Lake. The Maligne Canyon appears to have been cut by the fast-moving Maligne River. The canyon rock faces can be seen all the way down to the raging water by taking an easy trail that includes footbridges over the canyon, raging river and a spectacular area where the rapids go over a breathtaking waterfall with tremendous force.
At Maligne Lake we took a 90 minute lake cruise. Cost was $57.50 each and no senior discount but it turned out to be money well spent. In addition to seeing spectacular mountains, a lovely box canyon and glaciers it took us by the well-known “Spirit Island”. We were able to disembark to an overlook giving everyone an opportunity to take pictures of the iconic “Spirit Island”. The island was very small, tree covered and rather non-descrepit but the color of the water surrounding it was that glacier melt, beautiful blue/green, the surrounding mountains were wonderful to look at and the sky was a lovely blue and studded with fluffy white clouds.
All this on a beautiful sunny day that was shirtsleeve weather. The tour guide said that last year they had 73 days in a row of rain at the lake. Sadly, many people who went out on the cruise last year did not get to see some of this fabulous scenery.