Autumn Hours in Banff

Last week, I spent a few hours in Banff. It’s been a few years since I travelled through there. Despite the greyish skies, cool air and slower autumn pace, the outstanding beauty is always captivating.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, road to Banff

You cannot visit Banff without noticing it’s most famous landmark: the Banff Springs Hotel. The hotel was built by the Canadian Pacific Railway and opened to the public on June 1, 1888. However, construction of the stone building that stands today was built in stages between 1911 and 1914, expanding the hotel from 100 rooms to 300 rooms.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Banff Springs Hotel

To give you an idea of the cost to stay, it ranges from $300 to $500 per night, depending on the season. Be careful when they tell you you’re getting a room with a “partial mountain view”, though. I stayed at the hotel one night as a treat back in the mid-90s. The room was tiny and cramped, and it was more like a roof view with a tiny glimpse of a speck of mountain (if you craned your neck out the window and twisted it to one side). But it is worth a walk up to the building to see the architectural detail and poke your nose inside for a look.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Banff Springs Hotel

It’s fascinating to have a close look at the rock of the Rockies.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Banff

All these years I’ve been going to Banff, and this was the first time I knew of, and saw, Bow Falls, situated a short way down a road from the hotel.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Bow Falls, Banff

The beauty of the area is spectacular, every which way you turn.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, near Bow Falls, Banff

Not all of the Rocky Mountains are “rocky”. This peculiar one is unusually rounded.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Banff

Back in the town, looking for a place to have lunch, this car caught my eye.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, Eddie's burger car, Banff

Finished off the trip with lunch at Coyote’s Deli and Grill with Monika Siebert. You can read more about this trip on Monika’s Banff blog post.

Photo credit: Annie Zalezsak, pizzas at Coyote's Deli and Grill, Banff

Autumn in Canada

As August draws to a close, my thoughts turn to my most favourite season in Canada: Autumn. The astounding colours of the maple tree make me particularly nostalgic for Ontario. Look at these vivid, fiery colours reflecting on a Muskoka lake.

Photo credit: Bruce Amos,

When I was a young girl, starting school in September meant all kinds of science and art projects involving maple leaves. We’d go on class excursions to parks, collecting whatever grabbed our attention.

Photo credit: Melinda Nagy,

We’d all be trying to find THE perfect autumn maple leaf. It wasn’t easy. It would have to be in its peak form of shape, texture and colour. Often, the chances of finding the best one, would be catching one just as it fell off the tree.

Photo credit: Jun Li,

Sometimes, there would be just so many to choose from! And if you were too late in the season, they might have been trampled on.

Photo credit: Natalia Melnikova,

And then, there it would be: perhaps not symmetrical, perhaps with flaws, and yet even still, the most stunning maple leaf you ever did see!

Photo credit: Only Alone,

It’s a good thing you found it, because pretty soon, all you’ll find is frost on sumac leaves!

Photo credit: Bruce Amos,