One of the many joys of staying in the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is that they’ve got a fair few options here to help you make the most of the beauty that is Banff National Park; with hiking Johnston Canyon being one of the best.
Having done a fair bit of what I’d wanted to around here (including skiing at Sunshine Village); there was one place I knew we hadn’t gotten the chance to visit which I had wanted to for years.
This was to go hiking Johnston Canyon in Alberta.
Like I said though, the Fairmont makes it really easy to do stuff like this so, we booked in with them and after a rather magnificent breakfast.
seriously, breakfast here is worth making that extra time for – this is one you probably don’t wanna rush through. We got picked up by our driver for the morning to head over to go hiking Johnston Canyon.
I was a bit wary of the walk here.
See, as much as I wanted to experience Johnston Canyon, I wasn’t overly keen on a strenuous uphill climb.
Thankfully, this hike here is fairly easy and the uphill section don’t last long at all.
From the get-go whilst hiking Johnston Canyon, you’re surrounded by amazing sights.
It’s absolutely gorgeous here.
And that’s even before you get to Lower Falls.
Lower falls is absolutely gorgeous to see from the bridge (how the water’s still rushing through and yet frozen on top I have no idea) but the best view is easily at the other side of the bridge, once you climb through the gap in the rocks.
Only a handful of people can be here at one time (it’s got limited space) but it’s the closest point you can get to the waterfalls whilst hiking Johnston Canyon.
We carried on through the canyon, with our guide stopping every so often to set some context into different parts of this area; the wildlife, the locals, the geology.
It’s all stunning.
Eventually, we arrived at perhaps the most impressive part of Johnston Canyon – Upper Falls; in all its frozen glory!
It’s such a beauty and another reason why I love visiting Canada in winter.
After marvelling at it from below, we headed to the viewing platform at the top for a different perspective of Upper Falls.
It is easily as impressive from the top as it is from the bottom.
Cookies and hot chocolate at the ready, we stopped for a break and to properly take in the gorgeous scenery around us.
Honestly, hiking Johnston Canyon was incredible.
Eventually, it was time to head back to The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise to grab our stuff and head home.
Lake Louise and Banff as a whole had been the beauty I knew it was and it was just such a pleasure finishing off our trip to Alberta in this spectacularly beautiful part of Canada.
Back in Calgary, we headed over to what was turning into an old favourite pre-airport restaurant (we did the same thing last time we were here) – Cactus Club Café.
The food is absolutely fantastic here and the cocktails are amazing so it was a far too easy choice to stop here for food before leaving.
I went for the calamari to start with Lloyd going for the buffalo wings.
For mains, I had the creole steak and prawns while Lloyd had the fish tacos.
Dessert for me was the chocolate peanut butter crunch bar (so good) and the key lime pie for Lloyd.
I would normally finish things at this point, essentially because we did nothing next but to go to the airport but on our flight home, we finally got to see the Northern Lights over Canada for the very first time.
I knew the forecast was strong for it today and the thought had crossed my mind about the possibility of getting to see.
Though, when it came out, it was so much better than I’d imagined.
It was perhaps the strongest showing of the Northern Lights we’d seen thus far and the movement across the sky.
It was absolutely incredible.
Usually, it moves so slowly but this one was dancing across the sky like it did in movies.
It was just such an amazing experience to finish off our amazing trip through beautiful Alberta.