Alberta, Canada

Discovering the natural wonders of Alberta

by Ian Kobylanski

2 people, 2500 km, 10 days

Summer 2020 has shaped up to be nothing anyone — especially me — had ever expected. With all the uncertainty aside, this past summer has been an incredible opportunity to explore local gems and appreciate the area around us. Traveling with social distance through hidden campsites in British Columbia and the great national parks of Jasper and Banff made for a wonderful escape from the crazy world that we’re in.

My partner and I packed our laptops to work as digital nomads during the week (enjoying the new normal of working remotely) and set off. We booked an Audi A3 with a bike rack to fit our cycles for the journey; we were cozy in the small sedan, but fit us both perfectly with all our gear.

We made the long-haul journey to Jasper National Park on the first night, arriving in the early morning to our friends waiting for us at the campsite with a fire ready. We set out to explore Maligne Lake, Mount Edith Cavell, and saw more than six bears throughout all of our driving (they were certainly not afraid of cars).

After soaking up the Jasper forest, we drove towards Edmonton. We stayed there for the first few work days, enjoying each other’s company and staying indoors. With our original plans to head to the Calgary Stampede this summer let down, we were still able to alter our plans and enjoy food ordered from some of our favourite spots to finish out the work week.

On our drive back west, we were ready to put the phones on airplane mode again and set out to Banff National Park to spend our last few days in the wilderness. We stopped in our tracks again for mountain goats crossing, and later, my partner fell asleep as we waited for a washed out road to clear — nice unplanned stops. Finally, we arrived at the stunning Lake Louise and our campsite in the forest.

When we finally returned to Vancouver, it was a great relief to come back with a newfound energy and a new desire to venture further before the summer ends.

Alberta is a whole different wonderland during winter, so book a car and plan your own Rocky mountain escape!

If you enjoyed these shots, visit Ian’s website or check him out on Instagram to see more photography and follow his journeys.