Five of them

This October marked mine and Tim’s five years of being together. We felt it was a pretty big deal, as far as anniversaries go, so we headed out to the Rockies for the day to celebrate. This is the last ‘dating anniversary’ we’re celebrating, since we’re married now and stuff, and we’ll have a different anniversary! How many times can one say anniversary? Ha, sorry. We made the most of it all by being in one our favourite places, each with our favourite person.

I took advantage of one of the billions of Groupon emails that come through my inbox (even though I’ve requested to unsubscribe? Countless times?) and purchased a deal for two tickets for the gondola at the Lake Louise Ski Resort. It was the perfect time to visit — the larch trees were still sporting their signature golden yellow and it wasn’t too cold yet so we could enjoy the sights, but it was brisk enough that we had to stay close on that gondola. Not complaining about that.

^ That face. I live for that face of his. ^

That VIEW, though! The ride up took about 10 minutes and we could see Lake Louise and the Chateau Lake Louise from up there, as well as a huge chunk of the Rocky Mountain range. All this was about two hours away from our house. How? How are we so lucky?

^ One of my favourite photos of the day, by Tim. ^

Next up we visited Lake Louise to grab a bite to eat. It felt like I pulled a Mary Poppins — stepped out of the real world and into a painting. The scene was ethereal, with golds and reds and evergreen shades popping out in all directions, with toques as a necessity, and my dove and I hand in hand. We had fun capturing it all by playing around with the camera, as one does at Lake Louise.

^ Introverts need to let loose once in a while too, ya know. Ha. ^

We ate at the Chateau’s little foresty, woodland-like cafe place where they serve THE BEST hot chocolate ever (if you’re willing to hand over your life savings in exchange for a cup. Which apparently we were) and then headed over to the lake to take it all in.

^ It was ice cold! ^

After Lake Louise we thought we’d be adventurous and try driving out to Moraine Lake. It was a success! The one other time I’d been there it was so busy that we had to park in overflow parking and get bused to the lake, so being able to drive there ourselves was a welcomed surprise. Also, they close the curvy road that takes you to the lake once it gets closer to winter but apparently we missed that mark. It was a quick yet beautiful diversion from our day plan and there were hardly any other people there. We essentially had the lake to ourselves and it was like a hazy, brisk dream.

^ We quickly discovered the Moraine Lake chipmunks really like humans. ^

^ A Canadian rainbow… ^

Once we were done at Moraine Lake, Tim and I perused Banff Avenue for the afternoon, complete with a visit to Starbucks, and then headed into the grand finale of our day — having dinner at Castello Ristorante. A restaurant at the Banff Springs, Castello is a favourite luxury of mine and Tim’s. We first visited four years ago where we spent our one-year anniversary in Banff, and we’d been eager to return ever since. Like I said, it is a luxury, but we felt that our five-year was an appropriate time to make the trek back. It is the coziest, classiest and one of the most unique restaurants I’ve ever been. The ambiance is incredible — old-time crooners playing over the speakers, with a view of the Banff Springs through the windows. Both times we’ve been to Castello there’s been weddings taking in place in one of the hotel’s ballrooms, so that was fun to peek in on afterwards, too. After eating our four-year-in-the-making meal, we simply drove back home to end what was the ideal way to spend our anniversary. It was the perfect day.

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