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PamelaJane Mar 12th, 2005 02:54 PM

The Icefield Chalet good idea to break up drive from LL to Jasper?
We have six nights in August. Thinking of two or three nights in LL area, driving to Jasper for two nights and then back to Banff to be near Calgary as our plane leaves at 2pm.Would it be a good idea to stay at The Icefield Chalet one night on the way to Jasper in order to give more time to see sights along the Icefields parkway? Or will we have plenty of time and be better off going straight to Jasper? Has Anyone stayed at this place? Not sure if it would be like staying at a kind of truck stop, since it is on the HWY. Thanks for any help.

Judy_in_Calgary Mar 12th, 2005 03:11 PM

Hello PamelaJane,

I would suggest 3 nights in LL, 2 nights in Jasper, 1 night in Banff or Canmore.

If you are extremely fond of hiking, you might want to stay on the Icefields Parkway. Otherwise, you can see the scenic lookout points on the way from LL to Jasper in one day.

I have never been on the Icefields Parkway at night, but I cannot imagine that it gets a huge amount of traffic after dark. Pretty much the only people who use it are those who want to get from LL to Jasper or vice versa. Most of them are there for the scenery, which they cannot enjoy in the dark.

The Icefields Parkway is not a major truck route. Trucks that ply the Edmonton - Vancouver route go through Jasper, and those that travel the Calgary - Vancouver route go through Banff and Lake Louise. Well, they don't actually go through Banff townsite and Lake Louise village, but by-pass them.

My objection to stopping on the Icefields Parkway is simply that it would entail yet one more stop that involved checking in and checking out, unpacking and re-packing.

vivi Mar 12th, 2005 04:00 PM

I agree with Judy, I dont think it is necessary to spend the night at the Icefield Chatlet. The lodge reminded me of a big ski lodge, there would be absolutely nothing to do at night there. Driving along Icefield Parkway is easy, I would rather spend an extra night in Jasper or Banff than at the Chalet.

brookwood Mar 12th, 2005 07:48 PM

I wish to dissent. I think a night at the Icefields Chalet would be nice, particularly if coupled with a ride onto the glacier in the ice vehicle. It is a little on the pricey side, but if you have never done it, then it is fun.

Also, there are several places to stop and take a hike in that vicinity. I can sugggest several spots, that would take a while to see.

Also, I think it depends on how much stopping you do on the trip going up to Jasper, assuming you drive the Icefields Parkway both ways.

I agree that the drive from Lake Banff to Jasper can be made in a day, but if you want to stop and see the sights along the way, you will appreciate the extra time.

If you measure the success of a vacation like my Dad, e.g. miles covered per day, miles per gallon, how cheaply he could get a motel, and how many hours he spent on the road moving, then there is no need. But if you are like I am, which is the opposite, then a slow trip in one direction or the other would be fun.

I think you might prefer to stop at the Icefields Center going up because it is closer to Jasper. I am assuming, of course, that you are going both ways on the Icefields Parkway. Otherwise, it is along way round. Of course you could drive the forestry trunk road! That would be an adventure.

PamelaJane Mar 13th, 2005 09:19 AM

Thanks so much for your input, it really is greatly appreciated. I was thinking of the drive up to Jasper as a slow one allowing stops and possibly a trip on the ice vehicle. My husband is not one to stay in the car for more than an hour or so and that is part of the equation. We are not all day hikers, four hours a day would be my max. We will be driving back from Jasper to Banff for the last night and that trip will probably not have many stops as I want to be able to get to Banff for our last night and enjoy our night out before the trip home.I found a hotel in Jasper, The Park Place Inn, that is downtown and sounds great. After driving all day and stopping at places it sounds like a good place that you could walk from to restaurants.I guess I am leaning in the 3 nights LL,2 nights Jasper,1 night Banff. Again ,thanks so much for your info, I love this website! If you have never been somewhere it is really hard to plan all the details by yourself and insure a great trip.

maj Mar 13th, 2005 09:56 AM

I don't think you will have any problem hitting the highlights on the Icefields Parkway in one day without rushing. We went from Banff to Jasper in one day, stopping many times along the way to take pictures (including Lake Louise). Take the short hike to Peyto Lake and the snocoach ride. If it is getting late, you can stop and see Athabasca and/or Sunwapta Falls on your way back. We went to Athabasca Falls while we were in Jasper since it is so close. We were in and out of the car frequently along the way to take pictures.

I don't know about the hotel, but Jasper is small enough so you will be able to easily walk to the restaurants.
The first time I used this forum was when we went to the Canadian Rockies and I found it extremely helpful. Have a great trip and write a trip report when you get back.

LindainOhio Apr 1st, 2005 04:59 AM

On your drive to Jasper, you might enjoy the hike to Parker Ridge. You truly feel like you are on top of the world. We spent about 3 hours doing this hike but a lot of that time was spent exploring and enjoying the views at the top. When you get to the top, be sure not to miss hiking to the left. We got to the top, went both ways, but the views toward the left are spectacular.

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