Our big move across country began on a late Thursday night when we decided to forgo sleep and spontaneously drive to Alberta during the night. This way we were able to see the sunrise during our drive and were able to spend lots of time the next day exploring the mountains and lakes.
Originally we thought we might need to sleep in our car mid way, however we had lots of sleep the night before and we were fueled with the adrenaline of actually starting our road trip and our new life together in Ontario. Just the fact that it was actually happening after hours and months of planning was crazy!
We had a gorgeous drive through the mountains. It started to become daylight around 3:30am so we were able to enjoy the views and the sunrise.
We were able to listen to music as we drove and talked for hours either imagining or planning our new adventures. There were also many tears as we talked about how much we were going to miss my family and our friends that felt like family. It was not an easy thing to do leaving so many amazing people and so many great memories behind. However, we knew this move was best for us and that we would visit Vancouver again soon. We also drove in silence a lot, just enjoying the views. There were only a few trucks on the road when we were driving so it was very peaceful.
We stopped at this lake for a bit to stretch our legs. (We have no idea what this area was called haha!) Carson skipped a few rocks and I marveled at how peaceful the area was.
The first of the three lakes we stopped at was Emerald lake. We both have never visited this lake before, despite our many road trips here and even I living in Alberta for a few years, so we were excited to see it.
The lake was gorgeous! I especially loved the restaurant with the yellow umbrellas. It made for a very pretty contrast against the emerald colored water.
Our next stop was just further down the highway to Lake Louise. I was surprised the lake still had ice! However we did find out that the area had snowed the day before and the day after we visited. Even though it was June, the weather in the mountains was a lot cooler.
Lake Louise is always gorgeous. We have both been many times but it is truly one of the most beautiful scenic areas. There’s a reason there is always so many tourists! Thankfully during this trip, there wasn’t as many tourists since we arrived early in the morning. I do find that when the lake gets too busy you can’t enjoy the view as much, so we were glad we picked a good time to visit.
Our last stop was my personal favorite- Moraine Lake! I find the color of the glacier fed lake to be beautiful. It’s a gorgeously bright turquoise color. Unfortunately, the ice did distract from the color this trip. In just a few weeks, the ice would have all melted to reveal the vivid color it’s famous for.
While Moraine Lake is about half the size of Lake Louise, I have to say I do think it is more scenic and the atmosphere is better. But you can judge for yourself!
The beautiful blue water with a backdrop of towering snow-capped mountains is one of the most photographed spots in the Canadian Rockies and possibly in all of Canada. Fun fact– the iconic image of Moraine Lake and the Valley Of The Ten Peaks used to be on the back of Canadian twenty dollar bills.
There are many trails around the lake to explore with several stops along the way to get a picture perfect view of the water. You can choose from more of a casual trail to a strenuous, more advanced hike. Due to bear activity, some of the trails have seasonal restrictions to maximize safety. They also recommend to travel in a tight group of four or more. So for this trip, since it was just Carson and I, we decided to stick closer to the main trails. It wasn’t worth get chased by a bear!
The Rockpile is a short trail of less than half a kilometer. The trail switchbacks along the back of the moraine bringing you to the top of the rocks where there are fantastic views overlooking the lake. This is where we got most of the money shots!
It actually started to hail a little bit while we were here. You can tell by the white spots on some of our photos. We had to scurry down the rock pile and back to our car before it got too bad. Fortunately, we did manage to avoid the worst of the bad weather.
Then once we drove for several minutes, the weather turned again and we got some sun! That’s Alberta’s extreme weather for you.
We then had a few more hours of driving to reach Calgary. At this point, we both started to get tired so we had a quick nap on the side of the road to gain the endurance to get to Calgary for the night!
Road Trip Day Two: The Badlands, coming soon.
Until next time!
- C & C