The last time we visited the Jasper Park Lodge was 7 years ago. A pause in the journey from Vancouver to Toronto by train. We didn’t have a wheelchair back then. Walks were slow and tended to be short. However we did manage the Lac Beauvert Loop. A trail around the lake that would probably take an able bodied person about 45 mins (approximately…I’m guessing) took us about 2.5 hours. Thankfully there are rest stops and even some toilets (although as anyone who has experienced Canada’s National Parks toilets in warmer times, they can be a bit of a ‘hold your nose moment’). The real downside was Amanda was pretty much unable to walk for the next day.
This time we have an electric wheelchair. We used the service road that goes behind the trail for part of the way and did a big chunk of the loop. We did try the actual path at one point but some tree roots prevented us from going very far, we need a 4wd wheelchair. We saw some mule deer and a pika which was seriously cute.
Once back, Amanda went for a swim and I edited some photos (and had a beer) before lunch. Have I mentioned CiN yet? CiN is ‘Christmas in November’ here at the JPL
It’s incredibly popular. The lodge is decorated as though it’s Christmas Eve. We have a giant tree (photos to follow later), a life size gingerbread house and baubles and tinsel as far as the eye can see. Today, or perhaps tomorrow, hoardes of (mostly) women will descend on the JPL to take part in talks and demonstrations on things like tree and/or table decorating, present wrapping, and designing the perfect capsule wardrobe for the holidays (that was one that stuck in my mind from last time we were here). It’s crazy but it’s much loved here.
I went for a walk by myself in the afternoon around the other side of the loop while Amanda went for a manicure. It was pretty chilly I have to say. It’s getting colder. As I type this it’s -9C outside so I may have to put a long sleeved top on today. I saw those mule deer again, I think they’re following me. I also spotted a tiny red squirrel. I’ve never seen one in the wild before and I was amazed how small they are. Seriously cute.
We’re off the Lake Annette today as we’re reliably informed by one of the waitresses here that they have put a proper wheelchair friendly path around it. Hope that’s true.