Gumbo's Pic of the Day, August 23, 2014: Bow Glacier Falls, Banff National Park

Bow Glacier Falls, taken at the base of the falls

 

Thousands have trekked great distances to find the origin of the Nile River in Africa.  A few weeks ago I made a similar but much more modest quest, namely to find the origin of Alberta's Bow River.  The Bow is the dominant river in southwestern Alberta, draining Banff National Park, on through Calgary (where it caused a rather nasty flood in 2013), and then its off on its journey across the prairies to Hudson Bay.  

 

Bow Glacier Falls seen at a distance, draining Bow Glacier. Bow Lake is in the foreground

 

The Bow River has its origin in this beautiful waterfall which drains the meltwater from the Bow Glacier, discovered just in 1898.  The top of the falls is situated at 7000 ft (2130m) above sea level.  The waterfall is 505 ft (154 m) tall and flows through a large creek into beautiful Bow Lake.  A scenic hiking trail leads you from the lake to the base of the waterfall.  

 

Bow Glacier Falls seen at a distance, draining Bow Glacier.

 

Depending on the time of the year, the color of the Bow River varies a lot.  For example, in the spring it's turbid from the snowmelt of the mountains.  But in the summer it's a beautiful glacially colored river, a color that quickly changes when the weather gets cold and that turquoise quality disappears.  In the winter the falls and upper Bow River are frozen solid for many months.

 

Bow Glacier Falls, taken at the base of the falls

 

 

 I've a few short clips of the Bow Glacier Falls which I hope you'll enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

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Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

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