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Feedback on itinerary - Mid October Banff/Lake Louise/jasper

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We are a group of 6 including myself and hubby, 2 kids (10&13) and parents (60s) travelling from Australia to Banff, lake Louise and jasper in mid October ... Would appreciate thoughts and additional ideas on activities for our itinerary. We realise the weather can be quite varied. Even "warm days" will be quite chilly for us, so we have lots of layers in case it gets really cold. How likely is snow???

In terms of wildlife ... Are we still a chance of seeing any bears (please say yes!) ? Marmots/pikas/moose? Any special spots to look? Assuming we need to carry bear spray ... can we carry bring it over the border?

We have never been to the area before and are interested in general site seeing with a few short hikes (easy to moderate, less that 2-3 hours). We are quite happy to drive long distances.

Planned itinerary:

14/10 - travel by car from Whitefish, MT (USA) to Banff via Kootenay NP ...5-6 hr drive. Possible quick stops at Marble Canyon and radium hot springs. Arrive Banff early/mid arvo and just relax around town

15/10 - BANFF: bow valley parkway to Johnston canyon with hike. Banff gondola in afternoon (depending on weather) with short walk at top & Banff hot springs.

16/10 - BANFF: drive and short walks at local Banff attractions ... Surprise corner, Bow river falls, lake minnewanka, vermillion lakes, drive up mount norquay. Possibly tunnel mountain trail hike.

17/10 LAKE LOUISE: drive full way along bow valley parkway to yoho national park - natural bridge and emerald lake. ( I have read yoho valley road to takkakaw falls will likely be closed? And road to Moraine Lake?) Head back to Lake Louise, wander lakeshore trail.

18/10 LAKE LOUISE: Hike to Lake Agnes tea house. LAke Louise gondola.

19/10 ICEFIELDS PARKWAY TO JASPER: highlights- bow lake, peyto lake, mistaya canyon, walk up to edge of Columbia ice fields glacier (sno-coaches and skywalk closed :-(. ), tangle falls, athabasca falls. * ANY OTHER MUST SEES?

20/10 JASPER (staying at Pyramid lake) : maligne canyon and maligne lake. Pyramid lake trails.

21/10JASPER: valley of five lakes , horseshoe lake, sunwapta falls (want quiet day without too much driving)

22/10 head to Kamloops and next day to Seattle.


Accomodation is all booked so dates are locked in. Would greatly appreciate any feedback or ideas. Thanks :-)

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