Welcome to Katie's Travel Blog. This is really Jenny-doesn't-get-to-travel blog where I (mom) keep track of Katie's adventures so I can have some vicarious enjoyment! Here's a look at what one globally-aware kid from little Santa Cruz, California gets to do these days if her mom's willing to keep working!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Day 7, Sunday, July 17: Banff, Alberta

She sent me a picture!
Quick text from Katie last night - apparently the day was terrific and even her homesickness had backed off a bit (yeah!). She sent along this picture - which I absolutely love - and I was able to figure out it is at the falls in the Banff National Park.

Lyly sent a note early this morning, here's what's up:

This morning we left Tipi Camp and headed for Banff. Chelsea, our delegation manager played a trick on the students. Chelsea told the students the locals called it Banfafafa and we should too! So throughout today I heard students referring to Banfafafa. :)
On our bus ride we stopped at Okotoks Rock and learned where the term "Indian Giver" came from.
Fun Fact: Napi the trickster was the creator of the Blackfoot People. One day Napi gave a cloak to a big rock and it made the rock really happy. After several days Napi decided he wanted the cloak back and the rock said "no!" Napi tried to enlist the other animals to help him get the cloak away from the rock but they would not help him. He finally convinced a hawk to help him. The hawk picked up the rock and flew away with it. The hawk dropped the rock to the ground and it broke in half. To this day you can see Napi's rock. Hence the term Indian Giver.
Once in Banfafafa we enjoyed pizza by the Bowe River Falls and then trekked back to the YWCA. Students enjoyed shopping in downtown Banfafafa and a gondola ride to the top of Sulpher Mountain. The scenery was breathtaking. We are looking forward to tasting the water at the glaciers tomorrow.

People to People Itinerary

This morning is all about glaciers. Learn about these vast sheets of ice created on the landscape by thousands of years of snow accumulating and compacting. Over time, the sheer size and weight of the glacier causes it to move down slope making the glacier look like a river of ice coming down the mountain.

Travel along the Icefields Parkway, which is recognized as one of the most scenic routes in the world. This highway provides the opportunity to see grizzly bears, mountain goats, lynx, fox and sheep. Along the way you'll also see Eisenhower Peak and hear the story of how this mountain received its name.

Arrive at the Columbia Icefields, where you will load up in specialized vehicles for a ride on the Athabasca Glacier. Half way up the 3.75 mile long glacier, you can get out of your vehicle and run around on the ice, which is hundreds of yards thick. Make sure to bring an empty water bottle so you can taste some of the purest water available on the planet.

Lunch is at the Brewster Lodge located at the foot of the glacier. Then it is time to head back to Banff, making a few stops along the way to see some waterfalls and the powder blue waters of Peyto Lake.

In Banff tonight you will meet one of Canada's Mounties who will describe the history and culture of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

This evening, have a relaxing soak in the hot springs at the base of Sulphur Mountain while enjoying the setting sun and alpenglow.

Eisenhower Peak - I have no idea why they named this after our President...I sense a story here.
The glacier - stunning.
I doubt they will meet this guy! But I loved the picture and backdrop!

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