These pictures are from my long weekend with my lovely fiancee Natalia and her
brother Eric. Eric and I hiked to Mount Louis on Saturday and we went to Calaway
Park on the long weekend Monday. Not warm temperatures for late August, but the
rain mostly stayed away, so it was a nice weekend.


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Eric and I decided to take a hike up the Cory Pass to have a look at Mount Louis. The trail is
considered one of the more strenuous in the Banff area and it's mostly due to the steep approach to
Cory Pass. Eric is posing here on the top of a small bluff after about 30 minutes of straight uphill
trail hiking below treeline. That's Mount Rundle in the distance.


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I found a hiking staff on the trail and decided to use it for the day. I think from now on, any major
hiking I will do will involve hiking poles of some kind. It's mighty nice on the downhill for sure.
This is looking down to the Bow River valley.


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Eric likes pickles.


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From this point, it drops down pretty steeply to the valley bottom. That seems like an appropriate
pee break for sure!


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Eric's head is right in the middle of the Cory Pass. This point separates Mt Edith on the right from Mt
Cory on the left.


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Some of the limestone rock formations on the side of Mt Edith are definitely unique and make
for interesting pictures.


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Looking to Mt Cory from the approach trail to the Cory Pass.


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From the top of the Cory Pass gives a stellar panoramic view back down to the Bow Valley. Mt Rundle
is still visible to the left of the frame. The classic northwest-southeast cut of the Rockies is
also pretty evident here looking to the south.


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On the other side of the pass we found quite a few unique looking 'gargoyles'. What is one to do
other than hump them?

Video of Eric humping gargoyles at Cory Pass, 30 Aug 2008 VIDEO


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I decided to climb up onto a gargoyle for a closer view.


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This was the first view of Mount Louis we had. It's a limestone climbing classic with a reasonable
approach. This trip was mostly to scout out the terrain and to get a better look at the approach.


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If I would keep my eyes open, this would have been a really nice picture.


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It was decreed that this position was a perfect Christmas card shot. Since I already have my
Christmas shot this year, I invited Eric to do the same. Here he is, climbing up the gargoyle.


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A great hero's pose.


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I think Mount Louis looks mighty imposing. It gets the Paul Perrault stamp of approval as does the
entire hike up through Cory Pass.


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Part of what I enjoyed about this mountain was the fact that it never looked the same from
any angle. Here you can see an obvious weakness in the rock that was almost totally invisible from
the earlier looks we had.


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As we got further to the east, we could see the summit face. It looks absolutely blank from this
vantage point. It was here that Eric was introduced to "Ausome fruit nuggets".


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Appropriately, we finished our day (after the long descent) in the Banff Hot Springs after a pint
at the Rose and Crown. A pretty excellent day for sure.


Eric and Natalia visit Calaway Park


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It was decided that after a touch more shopping, Calaway Park was on the agenda. Sunday had been a rain
out, so we were looking for a little amusement. What better place to get it that at the Amusement Park?
Here, Eric is thrilled that he has 22 rides to choose from at his height.


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One of Natalia's favourite rides is the Dream Machine - the swings. Natalia and Eric wanted a picture
of themselves in their most photogenic pose.


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Look at how much fun Natalia has on the swings!


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The next stop was the bumper cars. Eric and I are enjoying a churro prior to the bumping.


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A little blurry, but Natalia is clearly excited about the bumper cars.


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Next in line was the roller coaster that Natalia didn't want to do the last time we were at the park.
It turns out that this was Natalia's first roller coaster. It was spectacular luck that we wound
up with the front car on the roller coaster for her first ride!


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Eric was also excited about being in the front of the roller coaster.


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This is just before the roller coaster dropped the big downhill portion.


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Both Natalia and Eric were stoked to hit the roller coaster for Natalia's inaugural ride.


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Eric attempted to win a giant prize, but we both wound up a little short.


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This is a ride called Storm, which in Eric's words, "made me poop a little."


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Eric and Natalia as the spokespeople for Calaway Park.


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"It's a Scream" indeed.


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Even though it was a little chilly, we decided that it was a great time to ride the log ride.
Here is the "before" picture.


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The "After" picture. I likely don't have to say who sat in the front of the log.


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You can almost see a person's outline around my jacket where Natalia shielded me from the water.


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Since we were already a little wet, Eric and I decided to hit up the bumper boats. These boats are
an excellent way to spend time. They have a little electric motor as well as a pump to shoot
water at anyone around you.


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Here are Eric and I shooting each other. Mostly, we ganged up on little kids though.


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Here we are trying to make this little girl cry.


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Contrary to the sweet Tanks game on Wii, the propulsion and the aiming are done by the same
steering mechanism on the bumper boats. This can make for some interesting situations as I
show here, getting stuck in front of Eric and trying to get out of the way. The downside of
this design is that while I'm getting away, I can't be soaking him.


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Natalia liked the swings so much, we went back again. We got accosted in line and asked to bring
someone's daughter along since she was too small to ride alone. That's who Natalia is riding with.


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This is our private ride we got since we were the only ones in line. Nati actually said
that she liked this one almost as much as the swings.


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We finished our riding on the balloon ferris wheel. A good day all around for riding.


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Eric and the Strawberry Ride.


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Our last stop was the "Whack-A-Mole" where we won stuffed unicorns. I thought this was
appropriate in front of the Cotton Candy and Sno-cones.


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Natalia and I after a great day at Calaway Park.

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