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Looking for a truly unique experience in Banff/Jasper

Looking for a truly unique experience in Banff/Jasper

Old Apr 17th, 2005, 05:09 PM
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Looking for a truly unique experience in Banff/Jasper

Are there any really Unique experiences to be had in this area? Unique guided trips, exotic meals, special places to stay? We were once able to book a night in a fire tower as our accomodations for the night outside of Durango. It was SO COOL. Anybody got any experiences like this for my trip with the family this summer?
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Old Apr 17th, 2005, 05:56 PM
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How about the helicopter to Mount Assiniboine Lodge? Pricey, but everything out there is.
Other than that, would a backcountry lodge suit you? I go to Twin Falls Chalet for a backwoods experience with top level cooking over a wood stove.
It is in Yoho by the way, and run by Fran Drummond.
It is backwoodsy!! No running water except in the creek. Don't worry, Fran put in a high priced filtration system a few years ago.
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Old Apr 18th, 2005, 12:00 AM
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My recommendations:

1) Hike the berg lake trail (Mt. Robson Prov. Park)
2) Take Skyline Trail Rides ( 2 to 5 days from Japser) including a stay Shovel Pass backcountry lodge
3)Stay at Tonquin Valley Backcountry Lodge (Jasper). Located 24kms from the nearest road at the base of the world famous Rampart Mountains and on the shores of pristine Amethyst Lake is where this wilderness haven lies. Accessible only by hiking or horseback riding, this lodge offers a true mountain wilderness that everyone can enjoy.

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Old Apr 19th, 2005, 08:55 AM
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Well - there is the Burgess Shale, just a little outside of Banff (actually in Yoho National Park which is just across the BC border, past Lake Louise). It is a very famous fossil site - some of the weirdest creatures imaginable! There are guided tours up to the site itself which must be arranged in advance. Easy to find if you do a Google search.
Also in Yoho (this is an easy day trip from Banff) - Lake O'Hara. Considered spectacularly beautiful. Daily limits to the number of people allowed to visit. You can hike or take a pre-arranged bus in. There is a small lodge here - Lake O'Hara Lodge, but I hear it books up very early, and it's expensive. There are a number of other unique and secluded lodges in the Canadian Rockies. Did you get the Tourism and Accommodation guides for Alberta and British Columbia? Both are readily available - again do a google search, they have 1 800 numbers to call and have very comprehensive booklets which include info on "Adventure" vacations.

You should book your accommodation as soon as possible - very popular region. Also book tours in advance of arrival where possible.

Oh, I just remembered from past investigations that there are tour companies that do Llama trips into the mountains!

About a couple of hours the other direction from Banff, in the prairie region, are the badlands and dinosaur fossil areas around Drumheller, Alberta. "Dinosaur Provincial Park" is interesting, as is the Tyrell Museum of Paleontology.

Old Dec 6th, 2005, 11:38 AM
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Thank you both for your recomendations. I have booked my lodging with Stephen Creek Cabin.

It is was a very fair price, private and all the things I needed.

All your suggestions sound amazing.
Let me ask you one final maybe stupid question. Are these activities accessible during this time of the year?

Thanks again
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Old Dec 9th, 2005, 06:34 AM
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I would think it's kind of difficult to get to the Burgess Shale - in fact, on a day tour, I thought they said something about it being accessible only to scientists or something. There's a Parks Canada building on the main street in Banff, they should be able to answer any questions like that. Quicker maybe to check their website www.parkscanada.ca
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Old Dec 10th, 2005, 11:46 AM
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Though not in Banff or Jasper - I agree with mtjt that for a unique Alberta experience Drumheller is well worth a visit. Simply stunning, great museum.

If in the mountains though and you like to hike I recommend a visit to Mount Robson which is just on the BC side. Touristy at the bottom but if your family has some stamina you can do a breath-taking hike to the valley of a thousand waterfalls (I believe thats what its called). The farther up the mountain you go the more tourists drop off and the more gorgeous the scenery. I've gotten quite far up in one day - it just depends on your fitness and how much you like to hike. For the more adventerous can hike and camp on the way up - there are to my knowledge very basic camp stops spaced out up on the mountain.

Enjoy your visit.

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