Maligne Lake hotel plan divides tourists
Developer wants to build 66-room hotel on lake in Jasper
A plan to build a hotel on picture-perfect Maligne Lake in Jasper National Park is getting mixed reviews by tourists.
Maligne Lake is the longest glacier-fed lake in the Canadian Rockies and is the setting in Jasper's most famous postcard.
"The Maligne Valley and the Maligne Lake are pretty much iconic symbols of what the Rockies represent, they are stunning vistas of mountains," said Pam Clark with Parks Canada. "They offer habitat for grizzly bears and caribou."
In the high season, the lake is visited by 2,000 people from around the world, but Maligne Tours wants some of the tourists allowed to stay overnight.
In the past visitors could stay in the lodge or cabins, but once the road was built in 1969, the overnight stays ended.
Now Maligne Tours wants to see the existing day lodge replaced by a 66-suite hotel alongside 15 tent cabins.
Some tourists like the idea.
"It makes it so much more accessible to everybody" said New Zealander Rob McMurdo.
But others feel more development would put too much pressure on the lake and the surrounding wildlife.
Parks Canada says it's open to the project and is reviewing the plan.
With files from CBC's Jonathon Lavoie