Canoeing at Summit Lake, in Stone Mountain Provincial Park, BC was an unforgettable experience. Stone Mountain is located on the Alaska Highway about 151 km (94 mi) from Fort Nelson. At Mile 392, Summit Lake is the highest point on the Alaska Highway at 1,295 metres (4,250 ft). We arrived late on our 3rd day of our Alaskan trip. The next morning we awoke to a beautiful, sunny day and planned to canoe in the lake before departing. To our disappointment the lake still had ice. However, the campground operator assured us it would be safe if we were careful. What an experience!
The lake’s surface was partially frozen; covered in “candle” ice. Candle ice is a form of “rotten ice”, a term given to ice that is melting or disintegrating and the ice is honeycombed. The candles were approximately 5 inches long and ½” in diameter. As the canoe moved through the vertical candles, it resulted in “tinkling sounds” like a wind chime, radiating away in all directions at the slightest disturbance. Absolute magic!
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