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August 25

Our last full day in the National Park.

I got up very early and went off to walk one of the cross country ski runs by the Lake. This was 3-4 miles long and very peaceful at that time of morning. I was hoping to see wildlife but it wasn't tremendous. The loon were on the lake but the beaver pools were quiet. The high spot was a big bull elk resting by the path. I was warned about this by a passer-by who said "Have a quick look but then take the detour; their temper is a bit unpredictable at this time of year."

We spent the morning at the Maligne Canyon. This is a tourist spot with a four mile walk which we did. The canyon is very deep but incredibly narrow and the water hurtles down it. The walk crosses from side to side and the various walks are defined in terms of the bridges. There were three rewards for doing the whole trip:


three bighorn sheep sunning themselves on a crag high above the river


a very pretty lace-effect waterfall


the ducks in the canyon. We saw them fly up and then cruise down on the water. The comic bit was the very casual way in which the hopped out just before some rapids, waddled round and popped back in again.

We thought about doing the classic boat trip on the Maligne Lake to take a picture of Spirit Island, the most photographed location in the Canadian Rockies. But we thought better of it and went looking at tourist bric-a-brac in Jasper.

Beryl came with me in he evening as I repeated the morning walk but in reverse. This time we did see beaver.



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