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Need advice for self drive from Vancouver to Lake Louise

Need advice for self drive from Vancouver to Lake Louise

Jan 31st, 2004, 09:04 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 11
Need advice for self drive from Vancouver to Lake Louise

We are planning two weeks self drive from Vancouver to Banff. This is our itinary
3.Lake Louise
4.Lake Louise
5.Lake louise
We are flying in and out from Vancouver and pick up,drop off car at the air port. How is the weather in mid May. Any advice would be appreciated.

chainana is offline  
Jan 31st, 2004, 09:33 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Hi Chainana,

Your itinerary looks good to me. The only thing I would change is that I would substitute Kamloops for Revelstoke.

The mountains would look beautiful. The one downside from a scenic point of view is that the mountain lakes would not have thawed (that doesn't happen till mid June). So, since they'd be covered in ice, you would not see that turquoise blue water that's on the post cards.

There would still be lots of snow lying around, in the forest and on the side of the road. It may not snow while you're travelling through the mountains, but it easily could snow.

You can expect day time temperatures between 50 and 60 deg F, and night time temperatures below freezing, between 25 and 30 deg F.

Vancouver would be very green and would have many varieties of flowers blooming. Day time temperatures would be about 60 deg F and night time temperatures around 50 deg F.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Feb 1st, 2004, 07:53 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,465
Hello chainana,

I guess that I disagree with Judy regarding Revelstoke. If you drove Jasper through Lake Louise to Kamloops all in one day, it would be quite tiring, and you wouldn't be able to make very many stops along the way.
My recommendation - take it easy and stop in Revelstoke. It is in a pretty spot in the mountains, and - if you are interested in that sort of thing - there is a charming railway museum in Revelstoke. Kamloops is in an arid area, the "hills" around there are usually yellow (dried out grasses), although mid-May that might not be the case, plus there is usually an unpleasant smell in the air from some of the industry there.

Judy hit it right on the buttom with her description of the weather.
Vancouver will be beautiful and in full bloom with spring flowers.
As you drive from Vancouver to the Rockies, you will see the changes in season before your eyes, from a delightful spring in Vancouver to late winter/early spring at the higher elevations in the Rockies.
We did this very trip last May (at the beginning of the month). Vancouver's flowers were brilliant, the days were cool but pleasant (wore light summer jackets), but it was snowing in Jasper and layers of sweaters were required!!

Some climate stats for weather in May:
(Keep in mind that the beginning of May is usually much cooler than the end of May, but climate averages are calculated using temperatures from the entire month).

Extreme high temp = 84F (average = 58F)
Extreme low temp = 0F (average = 35F)
Rain more likely than snow (except at higher elevations).

JASPER is just a little warmer and drier than Banff.

Average high = 68F
Average low = 41F

VANCOUVER is slightly cooler than Kelowna during the day but warmer at night.
Borealis is offline  
Feb 1st, 2004, 08:17 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,465
OOPS - I meant that Judy hit it right on the "button" not "buttom" with her description of weather. My proof reading and my typos are getting worse all the time!!!
Borealis is offline  
Feb 1st, 2004, 10:27 AM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,079
I am not sure I fully agree with the suggestion to substitute Kelowna for Revelstoke. Given a few conditiions, I see nothing that needs changing, IF, on your return, you drive south on the Icefields Parkway to the Trans Canada Highway and drive over Rogers Pass, through Glacier National Park to Revelstoke.

Essentially there are 2 ways to get from Jasper to Revelstoke: 1. Drive south on the Icefields Parkway, or 2. Drive west from Jasper to Tete Jaune Cache and take route 5 south to Kamloops. At Kamloops, turn east and drive through Salmon Arm and Sicamous to Revelstoke.

Either way you drive it, you will retrace some of your route at some point unless you drop south and wind your way over the hills through Penticton and Princeton to Hope.

Even then, the route from Hope to Vancouver probably will be a retrace, depending on your route to Kelowna.

Route 5 between Kamloops and Mt. Robson is essentially a drive through the woods. I recall nothing eventful along that route, other than Mt. Terry Fox which is reasonably close to Mt. Robson.
You can visit Robson while in Jasper.

Of the two alternatives, driving south on the Icefields Parkway is a much more beautiful drive than Route 5.

So here is my suggestion:
Keep the same schedule.
When you leave Jasper, drive south along the Icefields Parkway to the Trans Canada Highway, turn west, and continue over Rogers Pass to Revelstoke.

The argument that "I have already seen it," does not fully apply to the Icefields Parkway. I have driven it several times, in both directions, and I am convinced that the views are different. It is really a question of which part of your route do you retrace, and I would opt for the Icefields Parkway.

It is the one of the most spectacular mountain drives you will take.
brookwood is offline  

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