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Upon arriving at the LM8 backcountry campground, I sat down to rest while my husband dropped his pack to go look for fish in Lake Minnewanka. A mule deer immediately came into our campsite, despite me sitting only a few metres away. I savoured the sight of this majestic creature until the mule deer began to stick his head inside Joe’s abandoned, open pack, antlers and all. I had to get up and shoo him away, but thankfully he and his twin brother and mother came back later in the evening to pose for a number of my photos.
Lake Minnewanka is an impressive 21 km (13 mi) long lake in Banff National Park. It bends around picturesque Mt. Inglismaldie and Mt. Girouard. On the other side of Lake Minnewanka is the Aylmer Lookout, which provides fantastic views of these mountains as well as the full length of Lake Minnewanka. Many aspens line the lake, particularly around the LM8 backcountry campground. The area is frequented by much wildlife, including grizzly bears who come down to feast on the buffalo berries.
Banff National Park in Alberta became Canada’s first national park in 1885 and offers spectacular scenery of the Rocky Mountains, including snow-capped peaks, turquoise glacial lakes, valleys of wildflowers and verdant green forests. It is home to many animals such as grizzly bears, mountain goats, cougars, moose, beavers and bighorn sheep. The nearby township of Canmore lies outside the park’s borders but nonetheless offers the same spectacular scenery and wildlife.
Some of the best known natural areas of Banff National Park include the Bow River Valley, Lake Minnewanka, Plain of the Six Glaciers, Lake Louise, Moraine Lake and Johnston Canyon Falls. These are just some of the scenes that can be taken in through Banff’s 1600 km (994 miles) of hiking trails.