In late September, I dragged the kid out to Devil's Lake (Matchayaw Lake) northwest of Edmonton. The fall colours were beautiful but it was quite overcast so the colours don't show in the photos very well.
Saturday, December 4, 2021
Saturday, November 27, 2021
Mid-September saw us stop in at Jarvis Lake in William Switzer Provincial Park, just north of Hinton. We put in at the day use area at the south end of the lake. There is a boat launch, beach, swimming areas, playground, and toilets (that are super dark).
You can also access the lake at the north end via Kelly's Bathtub. This is mostly a beach and swimming hole and will require you to make a very short portage to get out into the main lake.
We were there at about 10 am and it was a cold day (+4C). First time my wife had paddled in a parka and toque!
Saturday, November 20, 2021
Medicine Lake is a seasonal lake, located on Maligne Lake Road about halfway between Highway 16 and Maligne Lake. Basically, the basin fills up in spring and then slowly drains. I've never had the chance to paddle here and we were hopeful there would still be enough water in September for a chance. No joy, though!
The best access looks to be from the lookout on the west end of the lake. There is parking lot and a set of stairs. When the lake is full, it would be a short carry to the water. The lake was down about 40 feet when we were there so the carry to the bottom was longer and there wasn't much lake to paddle.
Below, looking up from the lake to the parking lot.
Maybe next time!
Saturday, November 13, 2021
In September, we had a chance to paddle Lake Edith in Jasper. Access is off Lake Annette Road and Lake Annette (also a lovely paddle) is just a few hundred meters further up the road.
Edith offers a lovely beach launch, with picnic tables, toilets, SUP rentals, and a short carry (150 feet?). This is a great place to bring kids.
Saturday, November 6, 2021
Mid-September saw us in Jasper for an anniversary weekend. One of our first stops was Lac Beauvert.
There are basically two ways to get on the lake. You can go off the dock at the Jasper Park Lodge. You can also rent kayaks, canoes, SUPs, and paddle boats here, although the prices are steep (basically $100 an hour).
Or you can come up Old Fort Point Road from the south, park next to the lake at the trail head (washrooms), and climb down the bank. The bank isn't particularly steep. But the lake is rocky and the bottom is both slippery and steeply sloping. It is easier to get into a canoe here than a kayak!
The lake is about a 45- to 60-minute paddle around the perimeter and is gorgeous.
The colour of the water changes depending on depth and light so there is a whole range of blues and greens. plus there is a creek in the NW corner and usually some wildlife (elk, most often).
You can see a lot of golf balls along the east side as you parallel the fairways.
The water in the picture below is about 12 feet deep (judging from the size of the golf balls). The clarity in just astounding.
Saturday, October 30, 2021
In mid-September I took an afternoon paddle on Astotin Lake in Elk Island National Park. It had been a few years since I've been out here to paddle.