Moraine Lake

Banff – Week 2 & 3 Recap

What an amazing 3 weeks it’s been for Lisa and I at the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity…and I still have another week to go in my 4-week artist residency.

Why am I here? Check out my Week 1 recap.

In the meantime, here are the highlights of my hiking adventures these past 2 weeks…

Hike #4 – Bow River (Surprise Corner to Hoodoos Viewpoint)
It was an absolutely lovely 15ºC afternoon the day we trekked alongside the Bow. As was expected, the views were magnificent. Fresh air for the lungs. Some ups and downs but nothing as extreme as the first 3 hikes so our legs enjoyed a bit of a break from climbing.

Hike #5 – Moraine Lake
This is quite a magical place. Remember the old Canadian $20 bill? The drawing on the back of that is this place! The trail beside the lake was short and flat so we had time to just sit and bask in the magic around us. There were longer paths we could have hiked that day in the area but park officials suggested a minimum party of 4 or more because of Grizzly Bears in the area. It was just 2 of us but we did not feel short-changed…it was a wonderful sensation to stay beside this crystal lake.

Hike #6 – Johnston Canyon
This was also a very special experience. Walking through the canyon listening to the crescendo and decrescendo of the whitewater. We reached the lower falls, then a slight ascent to the Upper Falls. Then we left the throngs of tourists behind and climbed steadily for an hour through the most beautiful trees when we finally reached the Ink Pots…arguably one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever visited in my life.

Hike #7 – Sundance Canyon
This was an energetic day…walking fast and making lot’s of noise (bears in the area…thankfully we did not see any). The clouds were spitting some rain but the sun (and rainbow) also made an appearance. The trail was fairly flat and paved yet still felt remarkably remote for many kilometers. After that, we then faced a sudden and steep climb alongside brilliant whitewater which then leveled out to a peaceful tree canopy at the top of the canyon.

In between all these hikes, I’ve been enjoying some very focused composition time, starting the solo piano compositions based on all these hikes right away. With one week to go in this residency, I’m looking forward to spending more time outdoors while doing as much composing as I can to complete as much of this piano suite before returning to Toronto. It’s important that this music about here be composed here.

Stay tuned for updates on my progress!