Banff Potpourri – Banff National Park – Hiking Alberta

Our circumstances answer to our expectations. – Thoreau                                    From:  ‘Summit Stones and Adventure Musings’ by DSD

Occasionally, there is a day when it seems important to relax, revisit and refresh.

I find myself leisurely driving east on Tunnel Mountain Road in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada above the Town of Banff with no particular objective in mind.  Lunchtime accidentally coincides with my arrival at the Banff Hoodoos viewpoint.  The Bow River below is running high.  The world-famous Banff Springs Hotel lies resplendent in the distance and the hoodoos stand firm over the Bow River circle with mighty Mount Rundle in the background.

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Entrance sign at the Banff Hoodoos on Tunnel Mountain Road above Banff Town

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Bow River circle with hoodoos in front and Mount Rundle in the background

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Bow River circle with hoodoos in front and Mount Rundle in the background

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Bow River circle with hoodoos in front, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Springs Hotel at photo left in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Hoodoos - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Banff Springs Hotel taken from the Hoodoos viewpoint in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Town of Banff hosts many meticulously maintained historic homes which tell stories of the town’s developement.  These pioneer dwellings are spread throughout the town and there is a pamphlet I can pick up at the Banff Visitor Centre on the main street, Banff Avenue, which will guide me on a fascinating walk through history.  A few of these heritage homes are resident on Beaver Street directly behind the Banff Visitor Centre.  I read and walk, not at the same time.

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Beaver Lodge – A pioneer residence in Banff Town, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Beaver Lodge 1914 – 212 Beaver Street, Banff, Alberta, Canada

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Tanglewood – Pioneer residence in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Tanglewood 1887 – 208 Beaver Street, Banff Townsite in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Luxton Residence Interpretive Plaque – Banff Townsite, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Townsite - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Luxton Residence 1906 – 206 Beaver Street, Banff Townsite, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Norman Luxton – Larger than life and a huge contributor to building Banff Town

At the Luxton Residence, 206 Beaver Street, in the Town of Banff,  I decide I will do something I have been looking forward to for decades.  I will visit the Banff Cemetery.  It is at the end of Beaver Street on Buffalo Street.  One entrance with a bit of parking is near the Transformer Substation where electrical power was first introduced to the Town of Banff near 1905 from Bankhead below nearby Lake Minnewanka.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Transformer Substation Transformer Building Interpretive plaque near the entrance to Banff Cemetery

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

The Transformer Substation 1905 – 606 Buffalo Street, Banff Town, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

I should mention that visiting cemeteries is very special for me.  It always has been and, over many decades, I have searched for unique locations of historical significance where the grave stones tell fascinating stories, often of legendary proportion.  These include Boot Hill, Tombstone Arizona,  many ghost towns in the American Southwest and the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

A cemetery gives me a profound sense of peace.  It is very relaxing as I stroll through history and conjure up images of life long ago and hardships endured.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Historic markers combine with more recent history to create a record of memories.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Tom Wilson – Trail Blazer of the Canadian Rockies – 1882 – Banff National Park

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

A place of peace hosts fallen soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice to preserve the way of life we enjoy today.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Military Markers – Banff Townsite, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Always, I spend extra time at the grave sites of young children and feel a deep sense of calm and sadness.  Life then was hard in a different way.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Markers with familiar family surnames make me wonder if we were related by long gone relationships.  One day I will tackle that genealogical project.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

Familiar family names present the possibility of relationship possibilities

The tombstone of a young bride tugs at my heart-strings.  Surrounding markers tell more of the story.

Banff Town Cemetery - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

It has been a grand, fascinating day with several kilometres of walking and discovery.

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2 Responses to Banff Potpourri – Banff National Park – Hiking Alberta

  1. Pingback: The Canmore Cemetery - Canmore - Hiking Alberta

  2. Pingback: Grassi Lakes - Canmore - Hiking Alberta

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