Itinerary help-self drive/Vanc/Banff

Old Mar 10th, 2006, 06:15 PM
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Itinerary help-self drive/Vanc/Banff

Leaving Vancouver 9/26 in morning and ending in Calgary for flight home on 9/30 at 3:30pm. Plan on staying in Banff 9/27,9/28 and 9/29. Would we have time to go instead from Vancouver to Jasper then down to Banff towards Calgary? or should we just aim for Banff and drive north for few hours and turn back around? What would you do with this short amount of time? We will have already spent 3 days prior to this in Vancouver. Thanks.
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Old Mar 10th, 2006, 06:54 PM
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>>>>>>Would we have time to go instead from Vancouver to Jasper then down to Banff towards Calgary?<<<<<<


>>>>>>What would you do with this short amount of time?<<<<<<<

I would include Jasper.

This is what you could consider:

9/26 - Drive from Vancouver - Kamloops - Jasper. (This will be a hard day's drive.)

9/27 - From your Jasper base, visit Maligne Canyon, Maligne Lake and Whistlers Mountain (if the mountaintop is clear).

9/28 - Visit Mount Edith Cavell. Drive on to Athabasca Falls. At Athabasca Falls join the Icefields Parkway and continue to Lake Louise, stopping to see all the good stuff along the way. Be sure to see Peyto Lake.

It would be possible to drive on to Banff for the night, but Lake Louise would make a more convenient base.

9/29 - From your base in Lake Louise, visit Moraine Lake, the lake of Lake Louise (which is 3 miles from the village of Lake Louise), Takakkaw Falls and Emerald Lake.

9/30 - Drive to Banff townsite. Consider having breakfast in Banff townsite. Leave Banff townsite by 10.30 a.m. Drive to Calgary Airport. Figure on arriving there at 12.30 p.m. Have lunch at Calgary Airport <b>before</b> you check in for your flight. Check in at 1.30 p.m.

See all the other gory details here:

Hope that helps.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Old Mar 11th, 2006, 09:56 AM
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Thank you Judy. I have read many of your posts-you are so helpful. You may not be getting paid in money for your service here but you sure are making a lot of people have much better vacations. Thank you again.
Jeff7660 is offline  
Old Mar 11th, 2006, 01:09 PM
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In driving from Vancouver to Banff, I would not detour via Jasper because you have a very long drive in front of you.

The distance from Vancouver to Jasper is 500 miles. From Jasper to Banff is another 180 miles which would mean a total day of nearly 700 miles. I think the distance would be 700 miles by the time you pulled off the road to look at some of the attractions along the route.

I have driven the Vancouver - Banff both ways and the going is tedious after you leave Kamloops until you ascend Kicking Horse Pass in Yoho Park and cross over the Great Divide into Alberta.

The drive from Vancouver to Banff will take about 11 hours. If you detoured via Jasper, you would add several hours to your already long day.

If you stay on the Trans Canada, the scenery starts to liven up after you cross the Columbia River near Revelstoke. The route takes you over Rogers Pass in Glacier National Park. If the day is clear, you will no doubt want to stop and look because the scenery is spectacular. The visitor center also has some attractive offerings as well.

You will need to buy a park pass if you7 tour the visitor center, but the pass is good also in the other national parks of the region including Yoho, Kootenay, Jasper and Banff.

In terms of route, I would follow the Trans Canada as far as Hope and take the Coquihalla Freeway (It is a toll road; one of those strange contradictory terms ; you pay to drive on a freeway!)

The Fraser Canyon route from Hope to Kamloops is more scenic aguably, but it is slower. The Coquihalla route will at least get you as far as Kamloops in good order.

Unfortunately from Kamloops to Revelstoke is usually slow going because you must pass through small cities like Salmon Arm and traffic for a fair distance has a distinct local flavor.

Once you leave Revelstoke the route is mountainous until you leave Lake Louise for Banff. That part of the route is fairly flat.

From Banff, after you have rested up, you could drive north on the Icefields Parway.

If you want to see Jasper, I suggest you spend one night there, and devote a whole day to the Icefields Parkway.
In terms of bang for the buck, I think you will derive more from your investment if you do it that way.

There is so much to see along the Icefields Parkway that to hurry down it will be cheating you more than anyone.
You have already paid a high cost to get there in the first place. To give short shrift to the most scenic road in Alberta is not the best use of time and money.

At least that is the way I see it.

brookwood is offline  
Old Mar 11th, 2006, 04:13 PM
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Thank you too Brookwood. Gives us a lot to think about.. I was thinking along the same lines. We are from Florida and have been in the mountains just once in in our entire life. That was in North Carolina. There they call Floridians flatlanders cause we come from very flat land here in FLorida and not use to winding around or going up hill. We are also use to only very hot weather-this should be a treat.
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