I simply cannot string together any combination of words that would accurately describe how special last night was. My initial road diary entry started with, “Spirit Island was fucking insane. The moonlight on the rippled surface of the water, the howling wolf, the fear of getting eaten by a bear, the company, the feeling of victory when we were done.” I like to take these entries, or scribbly notes, look at my photos and then come up with slightly more detailed (and slightly less profane) posts, but that pretty well sums it up.

Spirit Island has been on my “to go” list for a while. I’ve seen a handful of photos of it, but I never really got to the next step. You know, planning. So to be able get out there with five awesome people last night was definitely one for the books. After figuring out the logistics of who went in what kayak and how much it cost, we loaded up our gear and took off. The sun set already set, but the mountains were still a faint shade of purple, and the moon was rising and lighting up the lake. The water was so still in a some spots, we could actually see a perfect circular reflection of the nearly full moon, and at one point we heard a lone wolf howl. It’s such a hauntingly beautiful sound, and one I’d like to hear more of.

I had my reservations about paddling out 14km in the middle of the night, but once we arrived, it all made sense. We laid on the dock and stared at the sea of stars above us, and we chatted a bit, but the night stars are so much fresher in my mind than any conversation that took place. It was very cold and damp so we bundled up in jackets and sleeping bags, and just a few hours after the moon set, the sun started lighting up the horizon. After a light blue came yellow, and when a streak of pink clouds ran across the sky, it was an absolutely unreal moment.

It’s not often that I feel this way after an adventure - maybe a few times a year. Part of me wants more experiences like this, but I also see a value in having them occur so infrequently. If it happened every week, would we appreciate these memories as much? I don’t know.

#SpiritIsland #MaligneLake #CanadianRockies #kayaking #Alberta #JasperNationalPark