We are looking forward to our boat trip today to Spirit Island. The helpful concierge team at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge had recommended that we make a reservation since the lake is very busy during the height of the summer tourist season. Since we have a departure time of 1 p.m., we spend a leisurely morning strolling the beautiful grounds and indulging in the breakfast buffet. The 90 minute drive on Maligne Lake Road is filled with breathtaking scenery and wildlife. We are thrilled to see a family of big horn sheep right alongside the car. Our drive continues and we hardly know which direction to look with the stunning scenery around every curve.
We arrive at Maligne Lake, the largest glacially fed lake in Jasper National Park. The beautiful color of the water, the surrounding mountain peaks, and the three glaciers visible from the lake are a stunning combination. We board our boat for the 30 minute trip to Spirit Island. The island is one of the most famous and photographed sights in the Canadian Rockies and is only accessible by boat. When you arrive, you are given approximately 15 minutes to take photographs of the island but are not allowed onto the island itself. Spirit Island received its name from the legend about two young lovers from feuding tribes that used to meet secretly on the island. When the young lady confessed to her father, one of the tribe’s Chiefs, she was banned from returning to the island. Heartbroken, her lover returned throughout his life hoping to see her again but sadly, she never came. He died on the island where his spirit still resides today.
After our boat trip, we grabbed a sandwich in the cafe and stopped alongside the road to enjoy a picnic on a rock with the world’s best view! Our final stop of the day was at Maligne Canyon, one of Jasper’s geological marvels. We enjoyed the hiking, the deep canyons and the beautiful waterfalls. What a great day in Jasper!