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The View Down The Giant Steps In Paradise Valley

Lake Annette – Paradise Valley Hike & Camp

If you want a stellar hike or backpacking trip, without the crowds, in the heart of the Moraine Lake - Lake Louise area, I'd highly recommend the Lake Annette - Paradise Valley - Giant Steps trail. Many people stop at Annette Lake - 5.7 km in, but then you miss some of the dramatic scenery, along with the option to hike up to Sentinel Pass. However, it's a 20.3 km return hike to Paradise Valley…

Kayaking Upper Kananaskis Lake

Kananaskis Kayaking to the Point Campground

For anyone eager to get out on a lake or reservoir in Alberta, you'll find Upper Kananaskis Lake to be a great choice. It sports a scenic mountain backdrop with one downside - it's often windy and it can blow up quickly, so paddling is best done early or late in the day when possible. The lake is located in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, approximately a 90-minute drive from Calgary. John and I enjoyed a…

Beautiful Views From The Bow River Trail

Bow Valley Provincial Park in Alberta

Bow Valley Provincial Park, less than an hour's drive west of Calgary, is a great year-round destination. The park is blessed with a varied landscape that includes a section along the glacier-fed Bow River at the confluence of the Kananaskis River, grasslands, boreal forest and a bit of the front range of the Canadian Rockies. In summer Bow Valley Provincial Park is a wonderful place to go camping (though be prepared for some highway and…

The Portable Awning Easily Attached To Our House

Portable Awning – MoonShade for Camping

If you're a camper, I think you'll find the MoonShade to be an incredibly useful piece of gear. It's a lightweight, portable awning that attaches to vans, cars or trucks (via two very strong magnets) or to windows via suction cups. Don't have any of the above? You can still tie it off with guylines to a fence, tree or door frame. The bottom line - it's very portable and it can be used in…

Our Campsite In Valhalla Provincial Park

Camping for Beginners – What You Need to Know

I've been camping now for 30 plus years. Growing up it was all about cottages - but when John and I moved to Colorado, camping and hiking became our focus. We were broke and camping was cheap. All we needed was the initial investment in camping gear and a tank of gas every weekend and we could get ourselves into some fabulous Rocky Mountain scenery.  With high unemployment, under employment, tanking stock portfolios and a…

Beautiful Elbow Lake

Elbow Lake Hike & Rae Glacier, Kananaskis Country

One of the easiest hikes to do in Kananaskis Country is the hike to Elbow Lake. It's only 1.3 km in from the trailhead with about 137 m of elevation gain. If you're a keen hiker that won't be enough but there is the option to continue to Rae Glacier. Note that the hike to Elbow Lake is ideal for families. And it makes a great first camping trip. You can knock it off in…

Using A Map And Compass To Figure Out Where We Are

Hiking Essentials Everyone Should Carry

The original list of 10 hiking essentials came from the Mountaineers, a Seattle based organization for climbers and outdoor adventures and the people behind the bible of mountaineering - Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills. The idea then as it is today, is that people be prepared for emergency events outdoors, even if it's miles from civilization. The 10 hiking essentials list has since been slightly modified, primarily to keep up with technology. I try…

Goutte D'O In Fundy National Park, New Brunswick

Accommodation Options in Canada’s National Parks

If you haven't recently stayed overnight in one of Canada's National Parks you probably don't know about all the cool and quirky accommodation options that are now available. Forget your musty smelling tent you haven't dragged out in years. Instead check out options that include everything from micro-cubes to cocoon tree beds to double tents - exciting options to explore whether you're a couple, a group of friends or a family. It seems people are…

Lovely Calm Water At The Start Of The Day

Weekend Canoe Trip on the Red Deer River

If you're looking for an easy, family-friendly summer adventure in Alberta try canoeing or kayaking the Red Deer River. Although it has a good rate of flow, there are very few, if any rapids to deal with. Your biggest problem will likely be running aground on a gravel bar or slipping on a muddy bank getting out of the canoe. There are lots of canoeing options on the Red Deer River from a one day…

OTENTik Camping In 1000 Islands National Park

1000 Islands Camping – The oTENTik Way

Parks Canada has rolled out a new form of glamping - a tent like cabin that they coined oTENTik. They've been placed in numerous national parks across all the provinces and can now be reserved online.  On a three day kayaking trip in the 1000 Islands, John and I had the chance to try two oTENTiks on two different islands within Thousand Islands National Park. 1000 Islands camping the oTENTik way is ideal for people…

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