Joffre Lakes is one of those hikes that I have seen a lot of pictures from and have had a lot of friends do, but I never got to experience myself. Sort of.
If you aren’t aware, Joffre Lakes comprises of 3 lakes. the first lake is 2 minutes from the parking lot and is pretty cool. The second lake is a couple hour hike from the parking lot and features beautiful colours, an epic mountain view, and that stupid log that you see everyone standing on for pictures. The third lake is 20 minutes past the second lake and is similar to the second lake, but closer to the glacier.
I have been to the first lake a couple times, but have never been able to make the full hike to the second lake. the first time I tried we didn’t have enough time to do the hike before having to be back as a group and the second time we got to the trailhead and a terrible thunder storm broke out so we headed back to the car. When the opportunity presented itself to do the Joffre hike another time, on a day with time to spare and good weather I couldn’t pass it up.
The hike was more challenging than I anticipated. The trail pretty much is straight up for the majority of the time and that sucks. Since tearing my ACL a couple months ago I have been pretty inactive, the reality of that hit me pretty hard during this hike. Finally getting to the second lake made it all worth it though.
It was a pretty busy day up there, I was very surprised at the amount of people there. Pictured above is the infamous log that everyone walks out on to take pictures. There was probably a 45 minute wait to go out there so we just decided to skip it and take pictures in between people leaving/entering the log. We also were there around 3:30pm where the light isn’t great. Sunset would be the best time to be up here taking pictures for light and the crowds would be lesser for sure.
The above image on the right I created in photoshop as a composite. My friend Matt is always down for a rope swing even if the lake is freezing. I told him I would get a cool pic of him doing it and turned my camera to burst mode where I could capture all the motion at once. I used a YouTube tutorial to figure out how to combine them into one image and voila.
Overall, I would recommend the hike. However, I would suggest not doing it on a day/time when lots of people will be there. Sunset time would be the best time to get there for if you are wanting some cool photos.
I also just thought this picture was funny and epic at the same time.