17 days-Banff/Lake Louise/Jasper

Old May 16th, 2004, 06:50 AM
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17 days-Banff/Lake Louise/Jasper

Hello, am having a difficulty deciding how to best distribute the time among these areas between June 13-30.
May be 7 days in Banff, 6 days in Lake Louise area and 4 days in Jasper?
Also, is anyone aquainted with Douglas Fir Resort or Rocky Mountain Resort in Banff? Would welcome your suggestions.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 08:15 AM
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Hello Puffinx,

It's hard to answer a question like this without knowing the full context. There are other questions, e.g., how much you enjoy hiking, what you'll be doing before and after Banff, Yoho and Jasper National Parks, etc.

Most people try to spread themselves too thin, but I don't think you're doing that. Knowing the generous amount of time you want to allocate to Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper perhaps would change Bob Brown's previous response to you about the merits of including the Okanagan Valley. Based on the timetable you've provided here, I believe you would have time to include the Okanagan.

Another question that arises is how much time you may or may not have allocated to Edmonton and Calgary. If you have this much time available, I believe you could afford a day each in Edmonton and Calgary. Also, it would be worth your while to see the incredible dinosaur skeletons at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology in Drumheller, east of Calgary. The Tyrrell would require a day, although it would be possible to fit it into the day that you used for travelling from Edmonton to Calgary.

As to the distribution of your time amongst Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper, I personally would cut back on Banff and add to Lake Louise. Lake Louise is more centrally located in the mountains, and can be used as a base for visiting places in Yoho National Park, Kootenay National Park and even British Columbia's Glacier National Park (not to be confused with Montana's Glacier National Park).

Another thing you could do, if you were to include the Okanagan Valley in your itinerary, is to stop in Golden or Revelstoke for a couple of days en route to Lake Louise. Golden or Revelstoke would serve as a good base for exploring British Columbia's Glacier National Park.

Also take into consideration that, if you stop at the scenic lookout points and ride the Snocoach on the Athabasca Glacier, the theoretically short drive from Lake Louise to Jasper takes the better part of a day.

Although I don't think Banff needs as many days as you're now allocating to it, it's true that it can be used as a base for seeing some wonderful scenery that lies to the east of Banff townsite (I'm thinking specifically of Kananaskis Country).

I'm not familiar with Douglas Fir Resort and Rocky Mountain Resort in Banff, so cannot answer your questions about them. I'm pretty sure I've seen someone here at Fodors referring to Douglas Fir Resort in favourable terms. You might want to do a word search on each of them.

When it comes to the Banff area, you might want to look at Canmore's accommodation offerings as well.

In order to decide how to allocate your time, I think you need to get hold of a guidebook to the hiking trails of the Canadian Rockies, and decide which trails you want to hike. Bob, who has hiked in the Rockies a LOT, swears by "Canadian Rockies Trail Guide" by Brian Patton and Bart Robinson.

If you're forced to make some decisions before you can get hold of a guidebook, then I don't think you would go wrong if you subtracted some time from Banff and added it to Lake Louise.

Hope this helps.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 09:16 AM
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P.S. Highway 40 is closed to vehicles roughly from Kananaskis Lakes south to Highwood Junction from December 1 to June 15 every year. Only cross country skiers, cyclists and pedestrians are allowed to use it during that time.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 10:35 AM
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Judy,

we are actually coming in from Yellowstone and yes, Mr. Bob Brown was very helpful. But when I talked to him our time for Bannf/Lake Louise was more limited. Nevertheless, hiking, yes but in all honesty, more like walking may be 5 miles per day. Have two days for Edmonton - and two days for Drumheller. Calgary one or two days also. I should consider Okanagan -Revelstoke-Rodgers Pass route again, but the only concern I have is that Roger's Pass 'could' be closed around June 13th,and if so, it would not be easy to get back to Lake Louise. Thank you, Judy
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Old May 16th, 2004, 11:21 AM
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Rogers Pass is on the Trans Canada, and the highway department tries to keep it open. That is avalanche country, and at times in the past the Canadian military comes in with artillery to blast down potential avalanches. At those times the road is closed. I presume that is the current practice.

I know the visitor center at Glacier has an interesting video on "Snow Wars" that showed the artillery being used to bring down the snow pack before it slid down with no warning.

Because of the upper air currents, the Selkirks and the Purcells catch a heavy snow load during the winter.

The Okanagan is pretty, but I had rather be in the Rockies.

One thing I have not seen in your asking to date is any reference to the other two parks that border on Jasper and Banff. Kooteney and Yoho are beautiful parks in their own right.
For example, would you plan to visit Takkakaw Falls and Emerald Lake?
Takkakaw is one of the most spectacular sights in Canada.

And if you want a hike that gets you up where you can see the sights, try the Iceline Trail in Yoho. It is steep up at first, but then levels off once the shelf of the glacial valley is attained.

I regret greatly that I will not be able to do anything but look at it this summer. Perhaps you can walk it for me!

Also in Kooteney, the trail to the valley that has the Stanley Glacier is an interesting trip. At the end,there are many waterfalls. The glacier itself is barely there these days.
Every one of those ice formations has retreated greatly in 5 years.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 12:26 PM
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>>>>>>Have two days for Edmonton - and two days for Drumheller. Calgary one or two days also.<<<<<<

Puffinx, you might consider spending only one day in Drumheller, where the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology is located, and two days in Brooks, which you can use as a base for exploring Dinosaur Provincial Park.

Here is information on Dinosaur Provincial Park:

http://www.cd.gov.ab.ca/enjoying_alb...r/triptips.asp

Just a thought.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 03:33 PM
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Yes, Mr. Browns suggestions are all well documented including the hiking trails and will try to do them all.
Judy you saved my life also. For some reason I thought Dinosaur Park was closer to Drumheller What I can say? Stupid is as stupid does.. LOL
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Old May 16th, 2004, 06:28 PM
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A question for Bob, please.
How long is the Iceline Trail hike in Yoho? and for how long does the steep 'up' last...an hour. or two? and is it really gruelling? It sounds like a great hike with great rewards, but don't know if I could manage it if it is 20 miles or something.
Thanks for any information.
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Old May 16th, 2004, 07:46 PM
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Well, I'm not Bob, but I can tell you that the spectacular Iceline Trail is not twenty miles, but neither is it the 5 mile walk you mentioned as your preference. Maybe somewhere between 8 and 12 miles, I can't recall. It's a rather tedious uphill climb at first, but before long you are rewarded by views of Takakaw Falls, and later by unworldly glacial scenery. In all honesty, it was a tough hike, and we are in pretty good shape. But not beyond the abilities of anyone in reasonable health/condition.

My favorite easy hikes/walks were Peyto Lake along the Icefield Parkway, and the Angel Glacier, near Jasper. The Angel Glacier Trail will give you a taste of what you would see on the Iceline Trail; I think that it is perhaps the most rewarding hike in all the area for the amount of energy expended! Do try to make this hike in the evening though - much less crowded. You will also see more wildlife if you make the drive in the evening - we saw a bear with her cub, elk and deer. Allow time to stop and see the waterfall.

A good guide to shorter hikes is "Walks and Rambles in the Canadian Rockies". At least that's what I think the title is - someone correct me if I'm wrong, please.

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Old May 17th, 2004, 05:42 PM
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Molly, thank you so much. I really appreciate the information. Iceland Trail seems a bit too gruelling for me, but the Peyto Lake and Angel Glacier Trail sound great. We are really very excited about our trip and knowing about these hikes adds to the excitement.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 07:46 PM
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You're quite welcome, puffinx!

I forgot to mention another fantastic short hike,Parker's Ridge, also along the Icefield Parkway. A bit more difficult, but relatively short, with awe-inspiring glacier and lake views.

Also, I should have told you that the drive leading to the Angel Glacier walk is Mt. Edith Cavell road.

Have a great trip! What a beautiful destination you've chosen!

Molly
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Old May 17th, 2004, 07:47 PM
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Sorry, meant to say kodi!
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Old May 18th, 2004, 04:23 PM
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Hi Molly. Thanks for the added infor on hikes. I've made notes. The more I hear, the more excited I am.
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Old May 21st, 2004, 06:54 AM
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We visited the Rockies last autumn and wish we had longer in Jasper (planning a return trip). I would cut off at least two days in Banff and add those to Jasper.
We did the Mt Edith Cavell hike in Jasper and loved it and also the Maligne Canyon and Lake Cruise. We also saw our first ever Moose in Maligne Valley so we were really pleased!
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