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Painting Locations

Tekarra Painting Sites

Jasper Watercolor Retreat Society

  1. On Sunday evening of the retreat each artist will be asked to list 5 sites they wish to visit and paint.  The lists will be compiled and those with the most votes will be visited. For a copy of the list you can download and print, please click here.
  2. On occasion we have had to change plans because of weather, and on rare occasions work in the studio.
  3. Please note these sites are picked for beauty and paint-ability, not for artist comfort.  Be prepared for cold, damp, windy, cloudy, sunny, hot, unpredictable mountain weather.  Do not avoid sites because of this or the distance.  Bring proper attire and gear for the changing conditions. Dress in layers and bring sturdy walking shoes.

Mount Edith Cavell

Mount Edith Cavell is an iconic mountain that can only be visited in the Fall.  We paint across Teardrop Lake, with views of Mount Edith Cavell, Angel glacier, Verdant Creek, and the shoulder of Mount Sorrow. Washrooms are approximately 1 km from painting site.  There is water on site for painting. 

Directions:      The site is 29.1 km from Tekarra Lodge.  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make a LEFT turn on 93A, to the Junction of 93.  Make another LEFT turn and travel through the park check point.  Approximately ½ km past the park check point make RIGHT turn onto HWY 93A, towards Marmot Basin.  About ½ km beyond the Marmot turn off is the turn off to Mount Edith Cavell on the righthand side of the road.  The road up to Mount Edith Cavell is twisty with several switchbacks.  Continue to the parking lot for the head of the Tonquin Valley Trail, right hand side of the road, opposite to the Youth Hostel.  A short walk with your equipment will bring you to the painting site.

Mount Edith Cavell

Medicine Lake

Medicine Lake has beautiful views of Mount Proposal, the end of the Colin Range, and wonderful reflections.

There are washrooms on site, but you are required to take your own water for painting.

Directions:      The site is 25.5 km from Tekarra Lodge.  You will need a valid park pass.

When leaving Tekarra Lodge make RIGHT turn to HWY 93A, take HWY 16 East towards Edmonton.  Drive until you reach a set of lights, turn RIGHT crossing the bridge over the Athabasca River.  Accessing the Maligne Lake road after crossing bridge.  The road will Y, take the left-hand fork.  Watch for the sign that says Maligne Lake Road.  When you near the 25 km mark, watch for a parking lot access on the right-hand side.  Walk with your equipment down the unused boat launch road.

Medicine Lake north
Medicine Lake – Painting by Alan Butler – JWRS member

Maligne Lake

This site has many painting opportunities.  Around the tour boat launch site there is a nice view of the old boat house, Shipwreck Mountain, Mount Leah, and Samson Peak.  Lots of tourists at this site.  Continuing up the lake on the South shore is an observation point of Mount Unwin and Mount Charlton.  If you choose, you can continue the road past the lodge area, cross a bridge and enter the trail head for the Skyline Trail.  Exceptionally large parking lot, park near the Canoe Lodge area.  Short walk down the road to the launch site on the South side of the launch site is a long area of beach with views of Mount Leah and Samson Peak.

Directions:      The site is 33 km from Tekarra Lodge.

When leaving Tekarra Lodge make RIGHT turn onto HWY 93A, at the lights on the junction to take HWY 16 turn RIGHT heading East towards Edmonton.  On the next set of lights, at the junction of Maligne Lake Road, make a RIGHT-hand turn, cross the green bridge across the Athabasca River.  Immediately on the other side of the bridge there is a fork in the road, stay on the left-hand side, which is the road to Medicine Lake and Maligne Lake.  This road will take you on a scenic tour past Medicine Lake, make sure to abide by the speed limit precautions as there is sometimes speed traps on this road.  Continue to the parking lot at the Maligne Lake boat launch or Skyline Trail access.

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Whirlpool River

This area has nice views of Whirlpool River, Whirlpool Mountain/Mount Geraldine, and Mount Hardisty. 

No washrooms on site, there is water on site for painting.

Directions:      The site is 30 km from Tekarra Lodge. You will need a valid park pass.

When leaving Tekarra Lodge make a LEFT turn to HWY 93A.  Join HWY 93 by turning left, continue through the park kiosk.  Continue approximately .5 km, make a right turn onto HWY93A; access to Marmot Basin, Mount Edith Cavell etc.  Continue this road past the Marmot Basin turn off, past the mount Edith Cavell turn off.  Continue to the Moab Lake road.  Do not cross the Whirlpool River bridge.  Make a RIGHT turn onto a narrow gravel road – travel slowly as there are numerous shallow potholes.  As you travel along this road you will see, on the left-hand side, two red Adirondack chairs – our usual painting spot.

Whirlpool River

Mile 5 Bridge

Mile 5 Bridge location has upriver views of Mount Hardesty, Mount Kerkeslin, and the south end of Mount Edith Cavell.  It also has a long down river view of Pyramid mountain. The views down river there is a path that parallels the Athabasca River, with many little painting spots along it.  The upriver views are a little more difficult to access.   If the river is low, one can access these areas underneath the bridge; if the river is high you must cross over the top of the highway and down onto the river bed and sandbars on the upriver side of the bridge.

Washrooms, and painting water available on site.

Directions:      The site is approximately 8 km from Tekarra Lodge.  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, to the Junction of HWY93.  Make another LEFT turn and travel through the park check point.  A short distance beyond, approximately 1.5-2 km, beyond the park booth there is an access road on the LEFT-hand side for the White-Water Boat Launch.  When parking, park towards the Left, or North side of the parking lot to allow the White-Water adventurers access with their trailers and buses.

Disaster Point/Roche Ronde

This site does have a fair amount of traffic noise, but if you continue along the old roadbed, you will find areas that are secluded and somewhat protected from the road noise.

No washrooms on site, but there is water on site for painting.

Directions:      The site is approximately 40 km from Tekarra Lodge. When leaving Tekarra Lodge make RIGHT turn onto HWY 93A, at the lights on the junction to take HWY 16 turn RIGHT heading East towards Edmonton.  You will continue for a total of 40 km.  At the painting site there is a large shoulder area with parking. 

12 Mile Bridge

This site gives you beautiful views of Mount Gargoyle to the East with a long view of the end of the Colin Range to the South.  The area we generally access involves crossing the railroad tracks, because there is a large slough area, which is nice to include in the foreground of your painting.

No washrooms on site, no water available on site for painting.

Directions:      The site is approximately 19.2 km from Tekarra Lodge.

When leaving Tekarra Lodge make RIGHT turn onto HWY 93A, at the lights on the junction to take HWY 16 turn RIGHT heading East towards Edmonton.  Continue for a total of 19.2 km.  There is an access road across the railroad tracks.  You must leave your vehicle parked on the shoulder of the highway and walk to the painting site.  On occasion we have been delayed, either coming or going, due to the train.

12 Mile Bridge – Mount Gargoyle
12 Mile Bridge

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Horseshoe Lake

Horseshoe Lake is another iconic painting site in the Rocky Mountains.  It gives glorious views of Mount Kerkeslin, a beautiful deep green lake which is crystal clear allowing one to see right to the bottom.  There are many painting sites in this area, with some of the best ones being at the end of the inner trail that ends with a beautiful view across the lake with a spur of trees coming out and Mount Kerkeslin in the background reflecting in the water.

Washrooms, and painting water available on site, albeit the bathrooms are located at the highway.

Directions:  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, to the Junction of HWY93.  Make another LEFT turn and travel through the park check point, continue on 22 km.  The large parking area is signed Horseshoe Lake, on the South/left hand side of the highway.  The access trail which is near the point of interest sign goes down hill to a disappearing creek.  Make your way to the left on the South side of the creek.  Initially the trail is somewhat narrow and bushy.  Along this side of the trail there are numerous huge flat rocks which one can set up on.  You can continue up a short rise, the trails in this area are not marked but very well worn, for approximately 200-300 meters you will find yourself in one of the nicest painting areas in the Rockies. 

Horseshoe Lake
Horseshoe Lake

Mount Fryatt

This again is huge, fluted mountain and from the painting site you can see Mount Fryatt to the West, the back side of Mount Edith Cavell to the North West, and Mount Christie and Brussels Peak to the South.  We sit on the banks of the Athabasca River.

No washrooms on site, but water is available. 

Directions:      The site is approximately 35 km from Tekarra Lodge.  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, continue until you meet the Junction of HWY93, the Banff Jasper Parkway.  Continue through the park check point, continue for 35 km.  The painting site is on an abandon picnic area on the Right/West hand side of the road.  This area can accommodate probably 5 or 6 cars; the rest can use the shoulder of the highway.

Mount Fryatt

Leach Lake

Leach Lake has ice views of Mount Edith Cavell, and Geraldine Mountain.  One may paint from the picnic area, or walk to the North end of the small lake and paint towards Geraldine Peak with a view across the lake with its reflections.

Washrooms, and painting water available on site.  Very often painters will use the picnic tables that are there. 

Directions:      The site is approximately 27.9 km from Tekarra Lodge.  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, continue until you meet the Junction of HWY93, the Banff Jasper Parkway.  Continue through the park check point, approximately .5 km past the kiosk, turn RIGHT onto 93A, the signage will be for Marmot/Mount Edith Cavell/Athabasca Falls.  Continue along this road, you will cross the Whirlpool River.  Continue for 27.9 km, there is a well-marked picnic area.

Leach Lake

Meeting of the Water

Meeting of the waters is nicest painted in the Spring when the snow is quite prominent on the mountains and makes the Curator mountain more interesting.  You are on the Athabasca River and there is a long view down the River towards Pyramid.

Washrooms, and painting water available on site.  

Directions:  You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, continue until you meet the Junction of HWY93, the Banff Jasper Parkway.  Continue through the park check point, approximately .5 km past the kiosk, turn RIGHT onto 93A, the signage will be for Marmot/Mount Edith Cavell/Athabasca Falls.  Continue for 19 km, on the LEFT-hand side of the road there is a picnic area with tables available. 

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Portal Creek 

Portal Creek is a typical mountain stream with water vigorously cascading over rocks.

No washrooms on site, but water is available. 

Directions:      You will need a valid park pass.

Leave Tekarra Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, continue until you meet the Junction of HWY93, Parkway South.  Continue through the park check kiosk, approximately .5 km past the kiosk is the road that accesses Marmot/Mount Edith Cavell/Athabasca Falls.  You will climb a steep hill, and at approximately the 6 km mark on the LEFT-hand side of the road there is a pull off with access for approximately 6-7 vehicles.  This used to be a picnic area but has been cordoned off with boulders.  You will know you are in the right spot because the open area that used to be for picnicking now has some rather large power poles in it.  Continue across the open area and access the creek.  The area has lots of painting possibilities.  If you bring some form of seating pad for sitting on the rocks it may be more comfortable.

Portal Creek

Cottonwood Slough/Patricia Lake/Pyramid Island

Cottonwood Slough has particularly good Fall color.  Depending on the spot you choose, the ground can be damp, and some form of waterproof footwear would be advisable.

Patricia Lake has a glorious view in the Fall of Pyramid Mountain, with a large swatch of aspens with reflections in Patricia Lake. 

Continuing to the end of the road one can access Pyramid Island.  The views from Pyramid Island is of Roche Noir, a long view of Mount Edith Cavell, and to the North East a lone view of Colin Range.

Washrooms only available at Pyramid Island, and painting water available at all 3 sites

Directions:  8 km from Tekarra Lodge

On leaving the Lodge, make a RIGHT turn on93A.  Continue through the lights, across the railroad tracks, make a right hand turn on Connaught Drive.  Continue in a Northerly direction until you reach Pyramid Lake Road, make a left-hand turn.  This will take you past the Lutheran Church, past the athletic ground.  You will head up Pyramid Lake Road.  This road is paved, has many twists, and turns but is very pleasant and scenic.  You will arrive at Cottonwood Slough.  There is a parking lot on the Lefthand side, just before you reach Cottonwood Slough.  You are encouraged to use this parking lot, as parking on the road is problematic due to the narrow road and narrow shoulders. 

Cottonwood Slough
Cottonwood Slough – Painting by Alan Butler – JWRS member

Continuing past this you will come to Patricia Lake, which has a very long viewing area.  In the Fall the Lake is typically low and there is a short sandy beach to paint on.  One of the better views of Pyramid, especially in the Fall.

Patricia Lake

If you continue to the end of the road park at the access to the Pyramid Island site.  You will access the island by a long wooden walking bridge.

Pyramid Island

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Mount Hardisty

This location gives a nice view of Mount Hardisty across the Athabasca River.  One can get fast moving water, reflections, etc.  You may also choose to paint down river and get a long view of Pyramid Mountain.

No washrooms at this site, however approximately 1 km away at Otto’s Cash some are available.  There is painting water available at all 3 sites

Directions:  28.5 km from Tekarra Lodge.      You will need a valid park pass.

On leaving the Lodge, make LEFT turn on 93A, to the Junction of HWY93, turn Left again.  Continue through the park kiosk.  100metres beyond the kiosk is the Junction with 93A, which is access to Marmot Basin, Mount Edith Cavell, Athabasca Falls.  Continue down this road past Wabbaso campground, at the paint site there is a wide shoulder to park.  Climb down the 1-meter bank to a beach and wide sand bar.

Lac Beauvert / Old Fort Point/ Colin Range/ Dromore

At Old Fort Point there is a nice down view of Pyramid Mountain, and an upriver view of the old iron bridge crossing the Athabasca River.  Continuing Past Old Fort Point approximately 2 km you will come to a parking lot, and the shores of Lac Beauvert.  You will have nice views across the lake, the edge of Jasper Park Golf Course, and the Colin Range.

Washrooms and water available at site.

Directions:  3 km from Tekarra Lodge.  On leaving the lodge, turn right on 93, take the first right across the Athabasca River on the old green bridge.  We often will save this area for days when the weather may be somewhat sketchy.

Old Fort Point

Athabasca Falls Area

This area gives us nice views down the Athabasca River to a long view of Mount Edith Cavell, Mount Fryatt, and a view of Curator, Hardisty and Kerkesliw, which parallels to the Athabasca River.  We tend not the paint in the Falls area as there are many tourists with only very limiting viewing sites.  We tend to paint on the shore of the River on the extreme East end of the parking lot. 

Washrooms available.  Recommended to take own painting water, as getting water from the river can be adventuresome.

Athabasca Falls
Athabasca River – Painting by Alan Butler

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Miette River

This location gives you good views of the Miette River, stony out cropping’s, nice area for Fall colors.  Extremely limited views of mountains. 

No washrooms at this site, but painting water is available.

Directions:  8 km from Tekarra Lodge. 

On leaving the Tekarra site, turn Right, and continue to the lights joining HWY 16.  Make a LEFT-hand turn, heading West.  Travel through the next set of lights, continuing West.  There are numerous painting sites along the river, some within 5-6 km of Tekarra.

Miette River

Yellowhead Lake

The Yellowhead Lake boat launch has spectacular views of Yellowhead mountain, with reflections in Yellowhead Lake.  Due to the train traffic on the other side of the lake, we often have good reflections of the train inching its way along, reflecting in the lake.

Washrooms and painting water available on site.

Directions:  You will need a valid park pass.

On leaving the Tekarra site, turn Right, and continue to the lights at the junction of HWY 93A joining HWY 16.  Make a LEFT hand turn on HWY 16, continue through the next set of lights.  Continue for approximately 33.8 km.  You will exit the park, will need park pass to return.  There are numerous accesses onto Yellowhead Lake, take the one that is the Boat Launch.  This is where we usually paint.

Yellowhead Lake

Talbot Lake

Talbot Lake gives Cinquefoil Range and the Miette Range.  This painting site is along the side of the highway, however there are numerous sheltered areas where this is not a bother.

Washrooms and painting water available on site.

Directions:  29.3 km from Tekarra Lodge. 

On leaving the Tekarra site, turn Right, and continue to the lights at the junction of HWY 93A joining HWY 16.  Make a RIGHT turn, heading East, continue 29.3 km, until you reach the observation and parking area at Talbot Lake.

Talbot Lake
Talbot Lake – Painting by Alan Butler – JWRS member

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Snaring River

This area we usually paint on the riverbed, looking to the West and North.  You will have views of Mount Chetamin, Mount Gargoyle, to the direct West there is a view of the Buttress.  Looking down river to the East is a view of the Colin Range.

Washrooms are a short hike to access.  Painting water available on site.

Snaring River

Directions:  17.3 km from Tekarra Lodge. 

On leaving the Tekarra site, turn Right, and continue to the lights at the junction of HWY 93A joining HWY 16.  Make a RIGHT turn, heading East, go through the first set of lights.  On the Left-hand side of the road, there is a road to the Palisades Centre/Snaring River Campground.  Make a LEFT turn off HWY 16, you will know you are on the correct road if you go immediately under the railroad tracks.  Take the Right fork in the road, continue to the Snaring River campground.  Make a Left-hand turn into the campground.  Continue to the parking area which is adjacent to the cookhouse.  There are also washrooms available in this area.  There is a wide well-travelled trail to the North, which accesses the riverbed/painting site.

Mount Tekarra

This site can be accessed walking along the edge of the ridge above the Junction of the Miette and Athabasca River. 

Washrooms and painting water unavailable, although your cabin should be close by.  I would encourage everyone to walk this short trail and paint this area.  Even if it is not one of the sites we pick.  We sometimes save this area for inclement weather.

Mount Tekarra Painting by Alan Butler – JWRS member

**Each of the above Painting Locations has an excellent view of the area. More views and locations can be found on Google if you search Jasper, Alberta.

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