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Re: Banff and Jasper

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Banff and Jasper
January 26, 2013 03:48PM
We are trying to plan a trip to Banff and Jasper National Parks. Any hints or suggestions on where to stay and what to do? Any easy to intermediate hike suggestions?
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 27, 2013 08:17AM
A couple of years ago, I drove from Montana into British Columbia and crossed through Kootenay National Park into Banff. From Banff, I drove as far north as the Abasthca Glacier but did not make it to Jasper. It was all an incredible area with gorgeous scenery. There's a really great visitor center in the town of Banff for getting permits and hike ideas. Since it was June and a lot of the trails were still snow covered, someone at the visitor center recommended hiking to Glacier Lake. The trailhead is several miles north of the town. I think it was about a six mile hike to Glacier Lake. At the lake, there is a camping area where they have a neat food hanging cable system to defeat grizzly bears.

A couple of shots from the trek:


North Saskatchewan River by urbandispute, on Flickr


Glacier Lake by urbandispute, on Flickr

I camped at the lake and hiked back to the car the next day.

In addition to the hike, other highlights in Banff were Lake Louise: http://www.flickr.com/photos/28181344@N00/5944562361/in/set-72157626966148132/
Moraine Lake: http://www.flickr.com/photos/28181344@N00/5948783868/in/set-72157626966148132/
Moraine was still ice covered the week before, I believe.


It was a lot of fun just driving up and down the Icefields Parkway, actually. I could have easily spent weeks in the area but only had a couple of days.

Icefields Parkway, Alberta by urbandispute, on Flickr



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/27/2013 08:28AM by bbb.
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 27, 2013 09:18AM
Thanks bbb. I am also looking for some short hikes for me, I have a bad knee and on a good day can only do a 5-6 mile round trip, less on other days, with little elevation changes.
avatar Re: Banff and Jasper
January 27, 2013 03:52PM
There are some interesting features around Jasper that require very little hiking to see. I was traveling with (basically) non-hikers so we usually took the shortest route through each one, but we had the option of going farther if we'd wanted to. Athabasca Falls and Maligne Canyon come to mind. There's also an aerial tramway up one of the nearby mountains and you can look down on the town of Jasper from the top.

We went in June 2011 when there were still patches of snow at higher elevations. We even had to cross a little packed snow to get to the summit (which reminded me a little of Sentinel Dome). The Canadian Rockies are made of rather dark rock (slate and such) so with snow on them, they end up looking black and white.

My friends thought Banff would be too upscale for us so we stuck to Jasper.








(Literal translation: "Stay behind the fool-guards".)

How do you say hello in Canadian? "Hello. Bonjour." winking smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/27/2013 03:53PM by gophersnake.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 08, 2015 01:37PM
I'm planning a trip to Banff, Jasper, and the area for this summer.

Any additional thoughts? Recommended laces to stay? Day hikes?

We will be taking a hiking tour for part of our trip.
http://www.backroads.com/trips/WCNI/canadian-rockies-hiking-tour

Any other forum(s) that would have more info?

Thanks!
avatar Re: Banff and Jasper
January 27, 2013 07:56PM
Re where to stay -- my friends rented a cabin near Jasper for a few nights. It worked out pretty cheap per person per night compared to, say, Yosemite Lodge. I don't know anything about Canadian hostels but the HI-Canada map shows that there are almost as many HI hostels (13) on the Alberta side of the Canadian Rockies alone as in all of California (15).

How are you getting there? I don't know if I'll ever get a chance to do it but I've heard that the train ride from Vancouver to Jasper is spectacular.
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 28, 2013 11:59AM
We are planning to fly into Calgary. We would love to take the train but don't have enough time with my son's competitive marching band practice this summer and it would cost more money. We also had thought about driving to Glacier NP and Waterton and then on up to Baniff and Jasper but time and money is again an issue. It is a big birthday year for me and our 25th anniversary so we are going to splurge and want to stay one or two nights at the Fairmont Lake Louise. The rest of our lodging has to be more economical but we don't want to stay in a hostel. We are looking into cabins around Jasper and Baniff. Unfortunately, this is a family trip so we don't have anyone to split expenses with.
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 29, 2013 07:33AM
Quote
parklover
We are planning to fly into Calgary. We would love to take the train but don't have enough time with my son's competitive marching band practice this summer and it would cost more money. We also had thought about driving to Glacier NP and Waterton and then on up to Baniff and Jasper but time and money is again an issue. It is a big birthday year for me and our 25th anniversary so we are going to splurge and want to stay one or two nights at the Fairmont Lake Louise. The rest of our lodging has to be more economical but we don't want to stay in a hostel. We are looking into cabins around Jasper and Baniff. Unfortunately, this is a family trip so we don't have anyone to split expenses with.

I guarantee that you'll have an incredible time. It's really beautiful country. If you are staying at Lake Louise, I highly recommend making the short drive up to Moraine Lake. I didn't see many lodging options on the main road driving towards Jasper but guessing you'll find more looking online.
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 29, 2013 11:01AM
I haven't looked at it yet, but there is a map and planning guide available for the area on the way...just picked one up at Quartzsite. (Kootenay Rockies Circle Routes Map and Kootinay Rockies Explore's Guide. Free travel app, too. www.KootenayRockies.com )
Re: Banff and Jasper
January 29, 2013 11:34AM
Quote
hikerchick395
I haven't looked at it yet, but there is a map and planning guide available for the area on the way...just picked one up at Quartzsite. (Kootenay Rockies Circle Routes Map and Kootinay Rockies Explore's Guide. Free travel app, too. www.KootenayRockies.com )

Thanks, I will check that website out.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 12, 2015 10:18PM
I've got 3 suggestions for hikes in this area which you might find helpful. I've got trip reports written on all of them. And they were all fantastic. But there are many more options.

The hikes are: Plain of Six Glaciers, Bow Glacier Falls, and the Berg Lake Trail in Mount Robson.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 16, 2015 12:56AM
Thanks for the recommendations. We are looking for day hikes for this trip, so the first two look excellent.

Great trip reports, BTW.

You mention preparing for bear issues. What did you do to prepare?

Thanks!!
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 16, 2015 08:56AM
I purchased some Bear Spray from the large hotel's sporting shop which is at Lake Louise. We just carried that with us everywhere.

One other really good hike which I researched but didn't carry out was Sentinel Pass out of nearby Moraine Lake. That hike sometimes requires groups of four due to the bear activity. If you don't have four, there is a sign where you must stop and wait at for some more people to come.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 16, 2015 12:26PM
Quote
SteveHall
I purchased some Bear Spray from the large hotel's sporting shop which is at Lake Louise. We just carried that with us everywhere.

One other really good hike which I researched but didn't carry out was Sentinel Pass out of nearby Moraine Lake. That hike sometimes requires groups of four due to the bear activity. If you don't have four, there is a sign where you must stop and wait at for some more people to come.

That is an interesting requirement. I've never heard of anything like that before. ALMOST without exception, grizzly bears won't charge big groups. Although there is a documented case somewhat recently in Alaska where a brown bear bluff charged a rather large group on a beach before turning off. It was considered highly unusual.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 16, 2015 01:41PM
Good to know that bear spray may be available at the hotel.

Actually, I was thinking of asking the front desk if they have any. I bet a lot of visitors leave their's behind before they get on the airplane. If they are selling, it may not be available for free.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 16, 2015 01:43PM
The Sentinel Pass hike sounds like another winner. Five stars on trip advisor, even.
Re: Banff and Jasper
March 31, 2015 10:17AM
Boat trip on Maligne Lake
Edith Cavell
Johnston Canyon, but not on Saturday as we did
Peyto Lake
Icefields Parkway...many views to stop at


we camped at Jasper National Park and Lake Louise campgrounds

(ha I see that I posted in January 2013...we went in August of that year. Can't wait to go back!!!)


We bought the Canadian National Parks Pass...got them in the mail...since we visited 5 national parks there



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/31/2015 10:21AM by hikerchick395.
Re: Banff and Jasper
April 08, 2015 03:46PM
More great suggestions. Thank you. I've added all of them to my plan.

If the weather is good, I should be able to visit all of these places!
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