Our final destination was Banff. For me it was the highlight of the trip. The hotel was lovely, the people nice, the food good and the setting spectacular. Let’s start with a photo of the hotel.
The following excerpt was taken from Wikipedia:
The Fairmont Banff Springs, formerly and commonly known as the Banff Springs Hotel, is a historic hotel located in Banff, Alberta, Canada. The entire town including the hotel, is situated in Banff National Park and overlooks a valley towards Mount Rundle, both of which are situated within the Rocky Mountain range. The hotel is located at an altitude of 1,414 metres (4,639 ft).
The hotel was opened in 1888 by the Canadian Pacific Railroad as one of the earliest of Canada’s grand railway hotels. The hotel property has undergone several stages of growth and redevelopment. The original hotel structure was designed by Bruce Price, with another structure completed in 1914. In 1926, a fire destroyed the original structure on the hotel property, although a replacement structure was later completed in 1928. The building was designated as a National Historic Site of Canada in 1988.
Our day began with a walk along the Bow River to the little town of Banff. Our first steps were downward, from the height of the hotel to the valley floor and river below.
Our downward efforts were well rewarded. Here is a photo of the Bow as it passes by the hotel golf course.
Once at the bottom, we turned in the direction of town and in search of the Bow River Falls passing some lovely scenery as we went.
Our path rose and fell as we made our way.
The following photos are in a slide show (there are a couple of slide shows in this post). Just click on any photo to start the show. When done click on the X in the upper right-hand corner to return to the post.
Here’s a photo of JoAnn taken with the falls behind her.
As we made our way, I captured this photo of the Bow, the trees and the mountains in the distance, which is one of my favorites.
And then, there were the falls. Although not cascading from on high, the falls are lovely.
Continuing along our path, we came upon this most unusual couple, united for eternity, watching the Bow flowing by.
Then, before we knew it, we were in the center of the lively town of Banff. Banff is a quaint little town set in the heart of the Rockies. Here are a few photos of the main street, Banff Avenue.
We enjoyed strolling along Banff Avenue, a pedestrian way, which is full of restaurants, cafes and shops. The downtown encapsulates the spirit and energy of this wonderful place. We had lunch at Park Cafe, sitting outside and enjoying the sun and people walking by. The cafe distills its own whiskey and we decided to try a dram of its smoky bourbon, which was very good, as was our lunch.
The mountains are never far away and are reminders of the winter ahead.
Lunch was over and we decided to take a bus back to our hotel. Today was our last on the tour and we wanted to enjoy a little of the hotel before our farewell reception and dinner.
Back at the hotel, I took this picture of some of the plantings which provide a sense of space , depth and color.
As we browsed the hotel shops we happened upon an artist in residence as he was working on one of his paintings; his interpretation of the Rockies. I managed to take this shot of him with his brush in hand. I love the shadow made by his brush. Unfortunately I lost his card and cannot properly identify him or give him credit for his work.
At 5pm we were invited by Jay to a special reception. If I didn’t tell you before, Jay lives in Banff and is a well-rounded individual. He worked for years for the Canadian government, having been stationed in London for a period of time. He is a ski instructor and, when not leading people on tours of the Rockies or Europe, works in the Banff Springs Hotel on occasion. In any event, he put together a lovely reception to which he invited a retired Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman who, resplendent in his dress uniform, provided us with an overview of his career. Here is a photo of JoAnn and me with him.
Then Jay introduced his friend, William Cunningham, a composer and pianist, who performed some very moving pieces for the group. First a photo of Jay as he introduced his friend and then a brief video of William’s performance.
And now, the video.
I truly enjoyed his music and wanted to capture a photo that expressed his passion and energy as he played. I hope you find this photo as interesting as I do.
Before we knew it, dinner and our Rocky Mountain adventure was over. All that remained was a trip to the airport on Sunday the 7th for our trip home leaving us to anticipate our next journey this fall when we travel with friends to California for a coastal cruise to San Francisco and south to Mexico.
I hope you enjoyed my posts of our journey. There is one more to come from this trip. I can tell you, taking photos of the mountains, rivers and lakes is difficult as lighting conditions are frequently challenging. I did my best and hope you enjoyed what I had to offer. Let me know.
Now, don’t forget to look at my post, “The Mountains, Lakes and Flowers.”