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    by mkataoka Fodor's Editor | Posted on Nov 28, 16 at 01:31 PM
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Trip Report Banff/Lake Louise Trip Report

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We just returned last week from a wonderful vacation in the Banff/Lake Louise area.

We drove up from WA...stopped our first night in Penticton at the Ramada Inn (reserved on Expedia and got a good deal!). After a long days drive, poolside margaritas hit the spot:) Next day we drove to Lake Louise to our cabin for the week.

We stayed at Baker Creek Chalets, which are on the Bow Valley Parkway and right on Baker Creek. We stayed there 14 years ago on our honeymoon and have been itching to go back and finally were able to. We had a 1 bedroom with a loft which was great for the 4 of us. The kids were in the loft with 2 twin beds.

Our first full day we hiked at Lake Louise to the Lake Agnes Tea House/Big Beehive/Plain of Six Glaciers. A big loop, long day, but lots of fun...and the tea houses were good rest stops for the kids. Plus the variety from the usual backpack food was a treat:)

Went to the Calgary Stampede the next day. We don't care for "fairs"...but it was fun to see the rodeo and see some different things. Friends of ours who are from Calgary told us about the mini doughnuts there too so we indulged in those:)

Our third day we drove to Banff and parked near the river in a public parking area. We thought we would walk up to the hot springs. Its not that far...only about 2.5-3 miles...but there is no sidewalk on the road so that wasn't too enjoyable. We heard there is a trail on the other side of the road...but didn't hear that til afterward, LOL! Anyway...we made it to the hot springs and that was nice. It was a hot day though so the water was warmer than we would have liked...but hey, you can't change the weather:) Then we walked over to the Gondola and rode to the top and had our picnic lunch up there.

The following day we drove up to the Columbia Icefields and took a snocoach tour. Gorgeous!!! After the tour we went to the toe of the glacier and took a picnic lunch there as well.

Our last day we went to Johnston Canyon and hiked up to the Inkpots. Got caught in a thunderstorm near the top so sort of hurried and didn't get the chance to take in all the beauty. Saw many people try hiking up to the inkpots that were definitely not prepared for the weather. Always carry the 10 essentials and be prepared!!!

The kids enjoyed the trip as much as we did 14 years ago so we have already made reservations to return next summer.

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