As our first year in Alberta was drawing to close we debated how to celebrate New Years Eve. It didn’t take long for us to select a jaunt up to Lake Louise for an evening skate! We dusted off our skates, packed some travelling road snacks, prepared some hot beverages and headed to the mountains.
It was a beautiful drive west chasing the sun into the mountains but we were growing deeply concerned with the plummeting temperatures observed on the dash temperature gauge. It is true that Alberta affords a “drier” kind of cold compared to Ontario’s bone-chilling winter wetness but when you see -24 degrees (C) cold is cold. We arrived at Chateau Lake Louise just as the sun was going down and with just enough time to see the full length of Lake Louise partially lit by the fading sun and lights form the hotel. Braving the frigid temperatures, boots were rapidly replaced with skates and off we glided. Well one of us glided … the other was closer to Bambi on ice but still managed to skate successfully around a beautifully crafted ice castle facade. The ice castle even came came complete with a throne. Funny thing about the throne was that so many bums had graced it that it was polished to a slippery finish which made trying to take pictures quite comical.
With the cold taking its toll on us despite the energy being expended on ripping around Lake Louise it was time to warm up. Back into boots we took a moment to appreciate some ice sculptures that lined the pathways of the hotel.
Also added to this adventure was a plan to capitalize on exceptionally good conditions to view the northern lights so we came prepared to take some photographs. After a much needed stop at a local restaurant to warm up and have a drink, we took to the road in search of a good spot for pictures. We found a darkened pull off and set up the tripod and camera in a series of tactical excursions from the warmth of the car. Snapping off a few pictures we both came to the conclusion that night photography was better suited for summer so we packed up quickly and headed home. Worthy to note that we didn’t thaw out completely until after we got home.
Once home, glasses of cognac were raised in toast to the fond memories of 2015 and a warm welcome to 2016.
We would like to thank all of you for sharing in our Alberta experiences. This blog has really helped us stay connected with family and friends and also helped us settle into our new home. It means a lot to us that you all have been a part of it.
Stay tuned for a new look to and all new experiences as we experience Alberta in 2016.