rocky mts


Berg Lake Trail to Emperor Falls

Mt. Robson Provincial Park, Canada

It’s a snow day so on with the Canada road trip posts!

This is the post I really wanted to take some time on. This area is known to be a world heritage site and each year people come from all over to back pack this 20 km long trail out to Berg Lake sitting below the largest peak in the Canadian Rockies, Mt. Robson just a ways outside of the northern end of Jasper National Park. Let me tell you, this is the hardest trail I have ever done.

Adventure buddy found this trail and decided we would do it. We didn’t have enough time to go all the way to Berg Lake, so we settled on making it to Emperor Falls. One of the most powerful waterfalls I have ever seen and also sitting right below Mt. Robson.

The Berg Lake Trail starts out very easy, and stays easy all the way to Kinney Lake. This is about 7km down the trail. Here you can camp for the night before moving on to the next section of the trail. However, We just use this place as a resting point before moving on. After Kinney Lake we continued along the easy part of the trail. All the water in this part of the world is just a beautiful turquoise blue. We soon hit the White horn camp, 11km down the trail, which is the last campsite before Emperor Falls and the ending of the easy part of the trail. We then walked through an open river bed between mountains which made me feel small and awe inspired and came upon White Falls, which was actually just the lower part of a bigger falls. The next 4km of this trail is the hardest thing I have ever climbed. It was all straight up hill. 

I began this difficult part of the trail with my head held high and my legs feeling strong. However, things did not stay that way. I am not used to hiking something this difficult with 30 lbs on my back and at an elevation of 5,300 ft. We climbed and climbed. After a while we had to stop and rest at almost every switch back. It was getting harder and harder. About half way up we were able to stop and rest and lay our eyes upon Falls of the Pool, the water fall above White Falls. At this point we were telling ourselves, “yay! We are almost there!”. We were wrong. At the pace we were going it would take a while longer. This is also when things started to get scary for me. My arms started going numb but also were growing to be painful. I needed to take more breaks and drink more and more water. I pushed through it but at that point all I wanted to do was curl up in my sleeping bag. 

7 hours after we started the trail we made it to the sign that said Emperor Falls but at that point I did not want to see it anymore, I wanted to sleep. I decided I would see it the next day on our way out. We climbed the remainder of the way to the camp in what was now cold and rainy weather, set up ate dinner and went to sleep. I don’t think a sleeping pad and sleeping bag has ever felt so amazing in my life.

Pictures from Emperor Falls next.

© Michelle Gefre | Trail the Sun | Insta



Albert Bierstadt (1830–1902, Germany/United States)

Landscapes 3

Bierstadt was a German-born American painter best known for his dramatic landscapes of the American West. To paint the scenes, Bierstadt joined several journeys of the Westward Expansion. Though not the first artist to record these sites, Bierstadt was the foremost painter of these scenes for the remainder of the 19th century.

Born in Germany, Bierstadt was brought to the United States at the age of one by his parents. He later returned to study painting for several years in Düsseldorf. He became part of the Hudson River School in New York, an informal group of like-minded painters who started painting along this scenic river. Their style was based on carefully detailed paintings with romantic, almost glowing lighting, sometimes called luminism. An important interpreter of the western landscape, Bierstadt, along with Thomas Moran, is also grouped with the Rocky Mountain School.