Sunset at Moraine Lake
Undoubtedly Moraine Lake is already on your list. It may even be the reason you started looking at flights here in the first place. This lake will not disappoint you. While photos of it may have you wondering how high the saturation has been turned up, you will find that the reality of this place even more powerfully colorful than it looks in pictures. For bonus points, come at sunset and watch the light change the peaks. Keep in mind that parking here can be a real b, and you need to plan accordingly.
You know those gorgeous mountains that are the backdrop to Moraine Lake? How would you like to hike in them? The trail to Sentinel Pass will get you up close and personal with the Valley of Ten Peaks. It can be as short or as long of a hike as you want, either going to the Larch Valley, all the way to Sentinel Pass, or past that. This trail often has a bear warning that limits the trail to groups no smaller than four people, but never fear. If you are solo or in a small group, this just means that you get to make friends. Hang out at the trail head until you see a group to join.
Lake O’Hara Alpine Lake Circuit
This hike isn’t easy to get to, but if you can make it happen I promise it is 120% worth it. This trail will take you high above the stupid beautiful Lake O’Hara, onto crazy cool ledges, to the base of beautiful mountains, and to other hidden bright blue lakes. If you miss out on getting bus seats to Lake O’Hara, check at the visitor center in the morning for cancellations. Sometimes the universe throws you a bone.
Or Wolf Lake because how is this not what this lake is called? This place is right off the road which, while convenient, also means it is full of people. Try to come at an off-peak time to have this place semi to yourself. This will let you enjoy the beauty of this place without fighting for elbow room.
Cruise a Canyon
There are many canyons to choose from. While visiting all of them is ideal, at the very least, fit in one. Johnston is the most popular, and also the most crowded. Marble Canyon on the other hand was relatively empty when we visited, and took us into a new national park, Kootenay.
These mountains are covered in cool spots to explore. Pick a random trail, a road that looks cool, a lake that sounds pretty, and go. There is no such thing as an ugly view here, so go and find your own spot. I promise you will enjoy yourself.
Drive Icefields Parkway
This drive is packed with beautiful views and quick pull offs. Take your time, stopping wherever you want, and exploring along the way.
Jasper National Park has a much different look and feel, and Maligne Lake is a great jumping off point for discovering it. The drive up is beautiful, and you are likely to spot some wildlife. Which brings me to my next point…
Spot Some Wildlife
Keep your eyes and ears open, listening and paying attention to your surroundings. Be quiet and patient, odds are you will see something, somewhere. Remember to respect the wildlife. Give them their space and never approach or feed them. You are in their home, not the other way around.
Visit Lake Louise
Honestly, you kind of have to. It may be overrun with tourists in brand new North Face jackets, but you can’t go all the way here and not at least see it. To escape the crowds, hike to Lake Agnes and get a view of Lake Louise from above.