Johnston Canyon & The Ink Pots is one of those iconic Banff National Parks hikes that one should not miss if coming to Banff to visit. I have been numerous times mostly during the winter months and on weekdays. Today was the perfect day to invest many hours savouring every sight, there is so much to see. In addition to seeing the stretch along the cat walk, the Lower Falls, the Upper Falls and the Ink Pots, we also aimed to find the "Secret Cave" as it is not off limits at this time of year.
view down to the Lower Falls catwalk & cave
We had an idea where the "Secret Cave" was located and as we hiked along the trail between the Lower Falls and the Upper Falls we watched for a beaten path in the snow downhill on the right. Well there were many as we went along and I tried a few. The turnoff is very close to the Upper Falls and we eventually found it and scurried our way down to it. I have seen summer photos from a few years back where the falls are not frozen, we were afforded them in the frozen state.
To put things into perspective, that's Happy Hiker standing at the base of the big boulder.
It was time to carry on to the Upper Falls.
This time there was some blue ice.
We went down to end of the cat walk where it over hangs the creek with hopes of seeing some ice climbers. They were there but they were just gearing up to start going up. We stayed a few minutes then decided it was time to hit the trail to the Ink Pots. As we followed the cat walk back up, I noticed a beaten path down to the creek, I went for it. This is a view from down there. You can see people standing on the cat walk overhang middle to bottom left in the photo. That's where we just were.
view up the canyon
We stopped at the intersection of the Ink Pots & Moose Meadows trails for a fuel fix.
This was our view here. It was warm and sparkly!
Happy Hiker sees things in the wintry forest just like me.
Here she saw an igloo designed by Mother Nature!
view as we hiked along the hard packed Ink Pots trail
Then we arrived! The view was breathtaking in all directions at the Ink Pots.
We shared the area with three others for a few minutes then they went on their way.
We agreed to meander about taking photos for a bit then settle down to dine.
so much snow, be careful where you walk
lots of snow crystals & snow pillows
We both got lift off, yet very slightly so!
I performed "the point of no return" fall!
Happy Hiker showing her happy pose!
We used enough energy from making a mess in the meadow. We saved the rest to meander around again before beginning the ascent out of here. A couple of the Pots were snow covered but this one was still wide open. Views like this make this place! Winter is my favourite season at The Ink Pots.
back at the Ink Pots & Moose Meadows trails intersection
When we reached the Upper Falls the climbers were on their way down.
a close up of the climber from the above photo
Our stars aligned for us today!
It felt like we found a little piece of paradise!
That place looks amazing! I can't wait until I can live a life like yours!ReplyDelete
It's nice to be able to go there on a weekday! I admire the life you are living now!Delete
Your heart must have been exploding with joy!ReplyDelete
It was singing pretty loud the entire time!Delete