Canoeing on Maligne Lake - Part Two Fisherman's Bay & Spirit Island

A backcountry canoe trip on Maligne (Mah-Leen) Lake in Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada is an incredible experience. This is a world class Rocky Mountain paddling excursion that leads adventure seekers through pristine wilderness to one of...
A backcountry canoe trip on Maligne (Mah-Leen) Lake in Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada is an incredible experience. This is a world class Rocky Mountain paddling excursion that leads adventure seekers through pristine wilderness to one of Canada's most photographed locations and beyond to beautiful mountain vistas that few people will ever see.

Although nervous about our late season booking, we were hopeful that the weather would hold out for our extended Thanksgiving weekend 5-night trip. Happily, Mother Nature rewarded our determination by giving us a gorgeous weekend. This photo gallery is about our time at Fisherman's Bay and Spirit Island and is actually a combination of nights 2 and 5 of our multi-day canoe trip on Maligne Lake.
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6 October 2023 at   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Maligne Lake is 22km long making it the largest of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Lakes. It is possible to paddle the length in a day. However, a more enjoyable experience would be to break the trip up like we did into a multi-day canoe trip. It's...
Maligne Lake is 22km long making it the largest of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Lakes. It is possible to paddle the length in a day. However, a more enjoyable experience would be to break the trip up like we did into a multi-day canoe trip. It's hard to put into words how beautiful Maligne Lake with its majestic mountains and changing colours of the waters are. It is one of those places that needs to be experienced.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
At 13km from the boat launch, Fisherman's Bay is near the mid point of lake. Many people will skip the first campground at Hidden Cove and paddle directly here. It took us just under 2.5 hours the day that we paddled out from Fisherman's Bay.
6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Fisherman's Bay is tucked into a small cove on the East side of the lake. There are 8 campsites here. Each one is large enough for a single tent. Campsites 3 & 4 are the closest to the lake and have the best views. There is one assisted...
Fisherman's Bay is tucked into a small cove on the East side of the lake. There are 8 campsites here. Each one is large enough for a single tent. Campsites 3 & 4 are the closest to the lake and have the best views. There is one assisted accessible campsite as well. After a frosty start to our day, the best part was soaking up the warmth of the sun on the beach.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Each of the campsites along Maligne Lake have a logbook for people to record their experience. They can be fun to read through. I enjoyed reading about Charlotte Louise's canoe trip to celebrate her 9th Birthday. It took her and her family 4...
Each of the campsites along Maligne Lake have a logbook for people to record their experience. They can be fun to read through. I enjoyed reading about Charlotte Louise's canoe trip to celebrate her 9th Birthday. It took her and her family 4 hours to paddle to Fisherman's. I imagine that they likely stopped at 2 or 3 of the picnic areas along their journey. If you were wondering if this is a family friendly canoe trip, take it from Charlotte Louise who loved her experience that it is.
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9 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
One of the nice things about exploring Maligne Lake on under your own paddling power is that you get to stay and enjoy every moment of the day and night.
Like enjoying the golden hour and watching as the sunlight hits the top of the mountain...
One of the nice things about exploring Maligne Lake on under your own paddling power is that you get to stay and enjoy every moment of the day and night.
Like enjoying the golden hour and watching as the sunlight hits the top of the mountain before it ducks behind the range for the night.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Watching the sunset over a mirror-like lake with perfect reflections is fantastic. It is so nice to just be still and watch the changing colours of the sky and the mountains. I understand why the Stoney Nakoda First Nation people call Maligne...
Watching the sunset over a mirror-like lake with perfect reflections is fantastic. It is so nice to just be still and watch the changing colours of the sky and the mountains. I understand why the Stoney Nakoda First Nation people call Maligne Lake the Lake of Healing. It is place that is good for the soul.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
The sunset views on Maligne Lake are beautiful and so peaceful. Equally as awe inspiring are the starry nights here. Jasper National Park is the second largest dark sky preserve in the world. Meaning that on a clear night, there is no better...
The sunset views on Maligne Lake are beautiful and so peaceful. Equally as awe inspiring are the starry nights here. Jasper National Park is the second largest dark sky preserve in the world. Meaning that on a clear night, there is no better place for stargazing than Jasper. In fact, the skies are so fantastic here that you can easily see the milky way!
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
We were so fortunate to have a perfect evening for a stunning sunset on Maligne Lake. The waters were calm and without a single ripple making for a perfect reflection of the mountain and the sky onto the water. So quiet, calm, peaceful and...
We were so fortunate to have a perfect evening for a stunning sunset on Maligne Lake. The waters were calm and without a single ripple making for a perfect reflection of the mountain and the sky onto the water. So quiet, calm, peaceful and magnificent.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
The veil of mist separating the relfection made me think of the saying, 'As above so below'. This phrase popping into my head seems fitting when I later learned that Maligne Lake is a very spiritual place for the Stoney Nakoda First Nations...
The veil of mist separating the relfection made me think of the saying, 'As above so below'. This phrase popping into my head seems fitting when I later learned that Maligne Lake is a very spiritual place for the Stoney Nakoda First Nations people. In fact, they believe that the mountains are the physical manifestation of their ancestors.
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7 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Boat tours run daily from May until just after Thanksgiving in October. The cruise takes visitors on a 1.5 hour - 2 hour tour and stops at Spirit Island. Depending on the tour visitors will get 15-30 minutes at Spirit Island. The tours are...
Boat tours run daily from May until just after Thanksgiving in October. The cruise takes visitors on a 1.5 hour - 2 hour tour and stops at Spirit Island. Depending on the tour visitors will get 15-30 minutes at Spirit Island. The tours are accessible as well. Guides share information about the history, geology and wildlife of the area.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
The Maligne Lake Boat Tours don't venture beyond Spirit Island. However, paddlers can. Our trip plan was to paddle all the way to the far end of the lake and to spend two nights there at the Coronet Creek Campground. We were happy that beyond the...
The Maligne Lake Boat Tours don't venture beyond Spirit Island. However, paddlers can. Our trip plan was to paddle all the way to the far end of the lake and to spend two nights there at the Coronet Creek Campground. We were happy that beyond the midpoint of the lake we would no longer need to deal with waves of the tour boats.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
The best part of canoeing to Spirit Island on Maligne Lake in Jasper is getting it all to yourselves when the boats leave or aren't running. This means that adventure seekers can take their time and enjoy the views.
6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Spirit Island is a beautiful and peaceful spot that has a certain heaviness about it. This is likely due to the heartbreaking First Nations Romeo and Juliette story that occured here. Spirit Island was the meeting place for a young couple that...
Spirit Island is a beautiful and peaceful spot that has a certain heaviness about it. This is likely due to the heartbreaking First Nations Romeo and Juliette story that occured here. Spirit Island was the meeting place for a young couple that had fallen in love. Like Romeo and Juliette, they were from rival tribes.When this young Juliette's father (the Chief) found out he forbid her from ever returning to the island. It is said that our Romeo, heartbroken still continued to visit the island never knowing what had happened and waiting for his love to return. In fact, he continued to return to the island for the remainder of his life and eventually died here. It is believed that his spirit is still on the island waiting for his Juliette to return. Because of this, Spirit Island is a signficant spiritual location for First Nations people. As such, you cannot walk on Spirit Island. However, you can walk along a short trail on the mainland and take some incredible photos of it.
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6 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Spirit Island is about a 15 minute (2km) paddle from Fisherman's Bay Campground. Making it an easy place to paddle for a sunrise or sunset visit when the touru boats are not running. Since the days are short this time of year, we decided to...
Spirit Island is about a 15 minute (2km) paddle from Fisherman's Bay Campground. Making it an easy place to paddle for a sunrise or sunset visit when the touru boats are not running. Since the days are short this time of year, we decided to paddle back to the campsite while there was still some light to guide our way. This was our last evening on the lake. All of the people that we were with at the Coronet Creek had paddled all the way out earlier that day. We didn't see anyone paddling in and there was no one else at Fisherman's Creek. This was also the last day for boat rentals and tours on the lake. It is quite possible that we were the only two people other than the Romeo spirit on the lake that evening. It was all at once an awesome and eerie feeling.
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9 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
Another day, another incredible reflection on Maligne Lake. We loved our time canoeing on Maligne Lake in Jasper National Park. Honestly, we couldn't have asked for better weather, calmer waters and prettier views. We would absolutely do this...
Another day, another incredible reflection on Maligne Lake. We loved our time canoeing on Maligne Lake in Jasper National Park. Honestly, we couldn't have asked for better weather, calmer waters and prettier views. We would absolutely do this trip again. If our next trip is another Thanksgiving journey, then I think we have picked up a few tips on how to have a backcoutry feast from some of our fellow campers. I did pack mini pies for us, however by night 4 we were onto dehydrated camp food. The lesson we learned, when canoeing you don't have to think like a backpacker. Instead purchase a good quality, bear proof cooler so you can stretch how long your fresh food lasts.
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10 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
We knew it was time to head home when it began raining as we paddled out. Fortunately the wasters were still calm. It would be warm if not for the rain. Thankfully we had everything we needed to keep ourselves and our gear dry. I really...
We knew it was time to head home when it began raining as we paddled out. Fortunately the wasters were still calm. It would be warm if not for the rain. Thankfully we had everything we needed to keep ourselves and our gear dry. I really appreciated having my paddling jacket and gloves. Naturally, the sun came out as soon as we finished canoeing and began to unpack. In the end it turned out to be another beautiful day in Jasper National Park, Alberta Canada.
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10 October 2023 ·   7 months ago taken in   Maligne Lake, Improvement District No. 12, AB T0E, Canada
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