Lake Minnewanka
overnight trip to Lm11 campground

With the rest of the backcountry snowbound, we made another trek along this lake. It's nothing new, but it's still pretty.


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Distance - 11.2km Elevation gain - 200m
3hours, 15mins out / ~3hours return


We started out midmorning, with the typical large crowd of tourists milling around the boardwalk.

Crowds at the Minnewanka day-use area.

Low water levels at the start.

Stewart Canyon.

Canyon end at the lake.

By Stewart Canyon, we'd left most of the stroller-wielders behind, and had now only to contend with the mountain bikes.
This is a very popular trail for mountain biking, and hampered by the snow that kept us out of higher places, they were out in full force.
Everyone who came by us, however, was reasonably courteous, and slowed down to ask to pass.
I did notice a stunning lack of bells - most people just waited until we heard them, despite the fact that a bell is the most common, obvious 'excuse me'.

Trail rises around the corner.

High point along the trail.

Laurier's new backpack.

A look back to Mount Rundle.

We were hiking out just as the spring melt started, meaning large fluctuations in water level by the time of day.
As we neared our campsite, we saw a creekbed go from dry to muddy to freshly overflowing in just a minute as we crossed it.
By the time we made it in, things were flowing quite strongly, and we got some water for dinner and the night from a stream just before Lm11.

Towers below Mount Inglismaldie

Brand-new stream suprises a biker.

Laurier builds a bridge for me. (looks smaller than it was)

Lm11 is not an awesome campground. There are only five or so tentspaces, and some were really bad.
One space we looked at didn't look like it could accomodate any size of tent - angled and bumpy the whole way around.
There's a nice space right by the water that has room for a few tents, but someone was already there and we didn't want to crowd.
We ended up waay off on our own via a mini-path, on a nicely built, but tiiiiiny pad that the vestibules had to extend past.
Naturally, latecomes set up their tent right beside the tend we chose not to crowd.

Lake Minnewanka in the evening light.

Some kayaked to our campground.

Gear success! New tent, backpack, and boots.

Nice, yet miniscule tent pad.

On our way out the next morning, we planned to stop at the nicely flowing stram for water, and were suprised to see it bone dry.
We ended up filtering from the lake, which was not ideal, but as far as lakes go, it's pretty nice.

No more water!?

Large beach exposed in the low water.

Laurier filters us some water.

Cool little peak on Inglismaldie.

Looking across to Cascade.

The rest of the way out was uneventful, on another warm day with occasional clouds.
Lake Minnewanka is not the most incredible place I've overnighted, but it's a pretty trail that is hikeable long before most else.

Hiking through old burns.

An elk? at Lm8 campground.

Beaver enjoys the view from Laurier's pack.

Calypso Orchid (calypso bulbosa).

Last look at the lake as we approach Stewart Canyon and the hordes.

Photos taken by Rachel.

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