Into the West 2012 - Part 11

Part 11 of Into the West is the continuation of a multi-part series that chronicles the journey that Shelley and I embarked on in late August and early September of last year.  A journey that covered over 5,000 miles, seven states, and two provinces of Canada over the course of about two weeks.  If you missed any of the previous parts click here to get caught up.

Day Thirteen

Shelley and I awoke on the morning of day thirteen in the Fox hotel in Banff, Canada.  There was one thing that I still wanted to see prior to leaving Banff and beginning our journey home, and that was the Bow River Falls.  So, with that in mind we loaded up the vehicle, checked out of the hotel and made our way through town to the falls.

Bow River Falls

The Bow River Falls were seen in the 1953 movie River of No Return, which starred Marilyn Monroe and no, that is not the reason why I had to see them.

Bow River Falls, Banff, Canada


The really cool thing about the Bow River Falls is that there are walking trails around them, and this allows you to view the base on the brink of the falls with a short walk up a slight grade.

Brink of the Bow River Falls, Banff, Canada

Banff Springs Hotel

The Banff Springs Hotel is visible from the brink of the falls.  On the day that Shelley and I were there the sky was cloudy, but the wind kept the clouds moving for the most part.

Banff Springs Hotel, Banff, Canada

The original Banff Springs Hotel was constructed between the spring of 1887 and the spring of 1888.  It was designed by American architect Bruce Price.  The hotel was then rebuilt piece by piece starting in 1911 under the direction of American architect Walter S. Painter.

After taking in the scenery of the Bow River Falls area, Shelley and I headed back through Banff and started our journey back to the States.  The scenery of Canada’s Highway 1 is breathtaking.

Near Banff, Canada


The drive east takes you to Calgary, Canada which has played host to the 1988 Winter Olympics.  With that in mind, Shelley and I decided that we should stop and see something that remains of those games.  Is it wrong that most of the way from Banff to Calgary I had a song from the movie Cool Runnings in my head?

Winter Park, Calgary, Canada

Winter Park, Calgary, Canada

Back to the States

Our journey south from Calgary took us along Alberta Highway 2 to Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada and then south / south-east on Alberta Highway 4, which turns into I-15 just south of the United States border with Canada.

Great Falls, Montana

We made it as far as Great Falls, Montana that day for a whopping total of around 400 miles for the day.  We pulled into Great Falls and found a hotel for the night.  After dropping the bags off we drove down to what remains of the falls along the Missouri River.  We made it to the falls right around sunset.

Sunset over Great Falls, Great Falls Montana


On our way back to the hotel we stopped briefly to snap a photograph of the old Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad depot.

Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad Depot, Great Falls, Montana