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joannegillard Nov 3rd, 2014 09:36 AM

rockies in september
We are visiting Canada in mid to late September next year. We have a rv booked and will be travelling from Vancouver to the rockies. We are looking for some tips and ideas on rv camping sites and what to do and see. day trips etc. We have seen sites that do dog sledding trips, is this possible at this time of year, will there be snow???
We have looked at Banff and Lake Louise and they seem the places to visit.
What weather might we expect.
All of your help will be very much apprecciated

tomfuller Nov 3rd, 2014 01:55 PM

Possible snow but not very likely. I've been in Jasper a couple times in late October and have not seen snow. There is a nice HI Hostel near the north end of the Icefield highway about 4 KM SW of Jasper. You can rent a car in Jasper for the trip to see the rest of the Canadian Rockies.
My favorite arrival into Jasper is on the ViaRail Canadian. It leaves Vancouver three days per week but beats driving an RV with a full water tank that could freeze.
The hostel has a nice kitchen/dining room, coed dorms and private rooms.

ltt Nov 4th, 2014 06:19 AM

many campgrounds close after the first weekend of september. september can be a fabulous month for travelling/camping in the rockies and bc. no dog sledding. look at maps, read old posts on routes. once you decide on a route, then we could recommend nice campgrounds. how many nights? what are your interests...such as hiking, biking, beaches (if it's warm enough...thinking the okanagan area), small towns or larger cities, how many minimum nights do you like to stay in one spot?

kgsneds Nov 4th, 2014 07:23 AM

If you can, I'd suggest reversing your trip and starting in the Rockies. You'd have less of chance of getting into colder/snowy weather in the Rockies and then go to Vancouver where it's likely to be warmer. Would save you money on heating/gas and likely make for a warmer trip overall.

September is a beautiful month in the Rockies - it can be chilly (i.e. below freezing at night), but very pleasant in the days. Snow is entirely possible up in the mountains - there's often a dusting on the peaks in the mornings and this year there was up to 40cm in some places in very early September. But less likely down in the townsites. Jasper is lower down so you are less likely to encounter snow there, but anything is possible.

So you definitely will want heat & good bedding in the RV. Even if it warms in the day, count on chilly to cold temps overnight. So also pack good layers, hat, mittens/gloves etc.

ltt's comment about campgrounds closing is worth noting - after Labour Day, your options for camping with an RV with be fairly limited in Banff, Jasper and Yoho National Parks. Probably not a problem finding a spot, though it could be busy in Lake Louise mid to late September because of the crowds coming to see the larches at Moraine Lake.

Definitely no dog sledding - in the Rockies, you are looking at end of the season hiking, climbing, walks, hot springs, cycling and just enjoying the scenery. While the crowds in September are not as bad as in the summer, there are some spots where you might want to avoid going with an RV. I'd definitely try to park the RV at a campsite on the outskirts of Banff and use public transport/walk/cycle into town. Parking/driving in Banff is pretty much a nightmare, and I can't imagine trying to deal with a RV downtown. You can also get backups in Lake Louise & Moraine Lake. The road to Moraine Lake is long/windy and limited parking, so if they are running the shuttle (which they generally do on September weeekends), opt for that. Sometimes it's required, but it would save you a lot of hassle/time getting up & down that road, especially since the parking lot fills quickly and not well designed. You also need to be careful about the road up to Takkakaw Falls - there are two very tight hairpin turns. I think RVs under a certain length are permitted, but like the buses, you may have to back up one of the turns to make it.

kgsneds Nov 5th, 2014 07:54 AM

As a note - though there's no dogsledding, some of the companies may offer tours of their kennels. So it could be worth checking out off season activities even if you can't go out on a sled (in the snow).

sludick Nov 6th, 2014 02:53 PM

Our favorite time to be there! No snow to speak of (maybe a light dusting if you are lucky), but usually a good time for fall color.

Have you checked out HelloBC website yet? Most of your trip will be in British Columbia.

And for RV campsites the same website:

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