GeoVista Earth Science vignettes

GeoVistas are downloadable brochures that explain iconic views in Canadian parks. They are site-specific vignettes that combine engaging descriptions of geological features in the landscape with information on how they have influenced climate, ecology and culture. Precise GPS coordinates allow you to reach these accessible sites.

Brochures are available for Jasper National Park in Alberta and Grasslands National Park in Saskatchewan. Simply click on the National Park name and select the brochures you want to download then print them or save them to your mobile device for reference when you are on site.

Jasper National Park

Download Disaster Point PDF

Disaster Point

You may hear that the name "Disaster Point" comes from an incident in which packhorses fell from the cliffs into the river here. But the "disaster" was tongue-in-cheek. Sandford Fleming, wellknown chief surveyor for the Canadian Pacific Railway, broke his whiskey flask on a rock just east of Roche Miette in 1872.

Download Jasper Lake PDF

Jasper Lake

Jasper Lake is a strange water body, 1.6 km wide, nearly 10 km long and only a metre deep. It has an annual cycle—full in summer, dry in winter—that we don't fully understand

Download Cold Sulphur Spring PDF

Cold Sulphur Spring

Here we have a hot spring gone cold. Too bad for us, but the bacteria and the bighorn sheep don't mind

Download Old Fort Point Distant View PDF

Old Fort Point Distant View

Old Fort Point is a hill found where logic tells us there shouldn't be one. If that were not odd enough, this hill is a classic example of a glacial feature named for a type of wig.

Download Old Fort Point Up Close PDF

Old Fort Point Up Close

When you walk up the short but steep trail to the top of Old Fort Point, below your feet lies the oldest rock in Jasper National Park. It's peculiar stuff. Boulders seen along the way are strangers, too.

Download Maligne Canyon PDF

Maligne Canyon

Here is what we know about Maligne Canyon. This slot in the bedrock is up to 55 m deep and 1.2 km long, it's carved in Devonian limestone, and it's a gorge, not a canyon. What we don't know: how it came to be.

Download Maligne Lake PDF

Maligne Lake

Pronounced "Muh-LEEN," this is the longest natural lake in the Canadian Rockies (22 km) and the third-deepest (97 m). Were it not for a local disaster many thousands of years ago, Maligne Lake would be considerably shorter. Currently, though, Mother Nature is doing her best to cut the lake in half.

Download Athabasca Glacier and the Columbia Icefield PDF

Athabasca Glacier and the Columbia Icefield

Snow may be soft and fluffy, but if it builds up into a glacier it can utterly change the landscape.


Grasslands National Park

Download Zahursky Point PDF

Zahursky Point

Hidden in the rocks before you are many stories of geological processes, including those associated with one instantaneous event that profoundly affected life on Earth. Fossils, big and small, play an important role in interpretation of the history of these rocks.


Copyright 2011 by Canadian Federation of Earth Sciences. All rights reserved except as noted, all photos are by the author.