Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Wizard Lake

Wizard Lake is located south of Calmar on Secondary Highway 795, west on Township Road 481 and then south on Range Road 271. The very long and narrow lake runs NE-SW and is a popular water-skiiing spot, particularly on the weekends.

Wizard Lake is also very canoe-able with good access and (the four times we've been there) very little wind. I'd guess the lake is over 10km long but only half a km wide.

There are several places to access Wizard lake but one of the nicest is on the east end (as per the directions above) at the Jubilee Campground. There is a very nice public beach (with concession and bathrooms) here and fairly nice swimming.

There is boat launch in the parking lot (below) here which makes for an easy entry.

There is also a boat launch (below) in the campground.

The lake is lovely, particularly in the autumn. It was known as Conjuring Lake when I was a kid and was the site of a famed nudist camp in the 1970s.

On future trips, we hope to explore it western end a bit more (perhaps by continuing down Township Road 481) which is reputed to be sandier and better for swimming. It is also subject to a speed limit which might make it friendlier to canoes.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Talbot Lake, Jasper

Talbot Lake is located on the southeast side of Highway 16 just inside the Jasper Park gates.

Talbot is a fairly large lake and offers a fairly good day of paddling with very clear water. It has good pike fishing. And the 5km length of the lake means there are some interesting parts to explore.

On the other side of the highway is Jasper Lake and towards Jasper is Edna Lake. Together, these three paddle can make for a nice day.

The easiest access point is the boat launch (above), located halfway down the lake. You can also simply pull off the highway onto the grass and access it almost anywhere but that involves getting a bit wetter than at the boat launch.

There is also some good birdwatching to be had. We stopped one day to watching a bald eagle and there are plenty of waterfowl. Friends report seeing osprey.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Annette Lake, Jasper

Annette Lake is my favourite paddle in Jasper. Located just north of Lac Beauvert and south of Edith Lake, it takes about 45 minutes to paddle around the lake.

The colour of the water is spectacular on a sunny day and the beach is a nice diversion for cranky kids.

The small size of the lake mean that it is often glassy calm and you can see the undulating bottom. You'll often find scuba divers in the NW corner of the lake.

The easiest place to put in is off the main beach. There are three parking lots and you want the right-most one when you come into the park. This requires about a 40-foot carry to the water. There is also a picnic area here with washrooms visible across the field.

The beach is quite lovely and can be busy on a nice day. The brave can even swim in the lake. I've only been in once (one day when it was 34 degrees outside) and it was a good break. The water is quite shallow so you can wade out quite a ways.

Annette is very picturesque due to the colour of the lake. Here a shot (alas, not mine) of Annette on a stormy day. There is a paved path around the lake (about 2.5km) that is wheelchair accessible.

A nice day is a morning paddling at Edith Lake, lunch and the afternoon on the beach at Annette, dinner at the Jasper Park Lodge and an evening paddle on Lake Beauvert.