With daylight fading quickly, I was scrambling for a good place near Jasper to take pictures during the “golden hour” of evening light. I wasn’t impressed with what I had found, driving out the Yellowhead Highway towards British Columbia, so I returned to town and headed south on the Icefields Parkway, Highway 93. It wasn’t difficult to find some nice places to take pictures.
The first mountain to stand out, south of Jasper, was Mount Tekarra. The sun had already set at the bottom of the valley, but Mount Tekarra was brilliantly lit. This mountain was named in 1859, in honor of the Indian guide who had accompanied explorer James Hector.
At the Athabasca River bridge, I stopped to admire one of my favorite views. I took a similar picture during my 2009 visit to the area — but no surprise, things look a lot different in March…
… than they did in early September. In both photos, you can see Pyramid Mountain in the distance — the defining peak in Jasper’s skyline.
Looking off the opposite side of the bridge, towards the south, a couple of distinctive summits were well-lit by the sun: Mount Hardisty is on the left, and Mount Kerkeslin on the right. Mount Kerkeslin is the taller of the two peaks, at 2,956 meters (9,698 feet). It’s the mountain that’s often photographed, directly behind Athabasca Falls.
Mount Hardisty was named for Richard Hardisty, the chief trader at Rocky Mountain House, who was credited with saving the life of missionary Father Lacombe.
From the bridge, you also have a nice view of Mount Tekarra.
I decided to drive a bit further down the Icefields Parkway, looking for moments where the road lined up with one mountain or another.
There’s Mount Kerkeslin again…
… and Mount Hardisty again.
I probably drove about 30 kilometers south, almost to Athabasca Falls, before it got dark enough that I needed to give up for the day. I made the drive again on Day 9, to visit Athabasca Falls.