Hopping off at Lake Louise

Trip Start Sep 10, 2009
Trip End Oct 22, 2009

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Flag of Canada  , Alberta,
Thursday, October 1, 2009

On Thursday morning I left Banff on the Moose bus for Lake Louise about an hour from Banff.  I was feeling a bit ordinary, mostly tired because I've done a lot of moving around over the last few days and also a bit sad at the thought of leaving my group who have been so nice.  Several of the others were also feeling a bit ordinary but that was because they had been out half the night.  The award for the most drunken person again went to T, the Norwegian.

We arrived at Lake Louise about 9.30am.  This is the most photographed lake on earth and you can see why - the view is spectacular to say the least.  Again the photos don't do it justice; it was a grey day rather than sunny and the incredible turquoise of the lake against the white mountains doesn't show that well.  It really has to be seen. I had one last walk and talk with my group at Lake Louise before they dropped me off at the Lake Louise Hostel.

This is in Lake Louise village which is 4-5km from Lake Louise itself and tiny.  There is a very small shopping centre, mostly cafes and shops catering to the tourist trade, an Information Centre (very helpful people) and a few hotels (many of which are closing now as winter is coming on).  It was very cold, about 3 degrees but I rugged up well and actually you only get really cold if you stand still too long.

The Hostel is nice, clean and comfortable.  This time I'm in a private room with a toilet about 10 feet away which seems to be shared between me and the room next door.  I suppose anybody in the building could use it but there are other toilets dotted about close to other rooms so probably only these two rooms use it.  The showers are down the hall a bit.  The hostel is big and there are two buildings.  The main building has reception, dorm rooms and kitchens and a huge lounge complete with a gigantic fireplace.  There's also a cafe where you can get meals if you don't feel like walking down to the shopping centre.  My building seems to be mostly private rooms or family rooms and there's a kitchen and laundry in the building. There are wooden decks all around and lovely grounds (although its much warmer to look at them through the window).

It was a miserable day today, although it was actually a couple of degrees warmer than yesterday.  However, there was rain and sleet on and off all day so I didn't do very much.  I intended to go up to Lake Louise and have afternoon tea at the Fairmont Chateau (very fancy) but I was talking to one of the locals here and he thought there would be zero visibility up there.  As it would have cost me about $20 for the return taxi trip and probably $30-$40 for afternoon tea it didn't seem worthwhile.

Instead, I went for a walk around the village, bought a couple of souvenirs, caught up on my washng and my sleep and generally had a lazy day.  There's a cute little squirrel living here at the hostel, he runs back and forth all day across the deck outside my room but he's way too quick and unpredictable to get a photo of.  I've seen a couple of squirrels and I'm always surprised at how tiny they are.  I was picturing something the size of a rabbit and these are actually about the size of a small guinea pig.

This hostel usually has wireless internet access but it's broken down and they don't have any internet at the moment.  That's been very annoying but can't be helped; hopefully I'll have it again in Jasper.

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