Tour description provided by G Adventures
Hike and bike your way through the beautiful canyons, glaciers and mountain passes that make the Canadian Rockies so enticing. This trip is perfect for the traveller who’s looking to actively explore this pristine wilderness but prefers a comfortable landing at night. You’ll hike the lush forests of the Kananaskis and Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, and experience the magnificent Icefield Parkway, Moraine Lake, and Yoho and Banff national parks. Best of all, the trip begins and ends in Calgary with its convenient international airport. Dream big and get active!
Day 1 Calgary (1L,1D)
Meet and greet in Calgary with your CEO at 8.00 am. We start with an orientation tour in Calgary, home of the 1988 Winter Olympics and the world-famous Calgary Rodeo. We then push onto the Kananaskis country to Kananaskis Provincial Park. Kananaskis Country is a 4,000 sq. km multiple use area located in the foothills and mountains of the Canadian Rockies west of Calgary. It is a diverse landscape including outstanding scenery, snow caped mountains, abundant wildlife and the cowboy feel. We head to Chester lake trail in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park for an introductory hike in the Canadian Rockies. Chester Lake is nestled among towering peaks on the secluded side of Kananaskis - the Smith-Dorrien/Spray Lakes Road. We than make it into Banff at the end of the day. Check in at hotel in downtown Banff and free time to wonder around. Dinner in one of the many restaurants in Banff. Chester Lake: 3-4h hike, moderate, 10 km return,Elevation Gain: 310 m (1,017 ft).
Approximate Distance: 80 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (includes stops and hike Chester Lake)
Day 2 Banff/Jasper (1B,1L)
Transfer onto the celebrated Icefield Parkway to Jasper. Along the 300 km ride, a spectacle unfolds before our eyes: lush coniferous forests, immense mountains, turquoise lakes, high-falling cascades and humbling glaciers. Numerous stops will be planned along the way for photos, observation and wildlife encounters. Hike on Parker ridge trail or Bow Falls trail or valley of 5 lakes and enjoy a tasty lunch in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. We reach our destination later in the day. Welcome to Jasper! Free time in the village and group dinner in a local restaurant or pub (dinner not included). Parker Ridge: 2-3h (easy to moderate) 5 km return, Elevation Gain - 250m (820'). OR Bow Falls/glacier: 1-3h (easy) Elevation Gain: 0 to 155 m (510 ft), all at the end. Distance is 1 to 9km return.
Approximate Distance: 290 km
Estimated Travel Time: 10 hrs (includes a full day on the Icefield Parkway)
Day 3 Jasper (1B,1L)
In the morning we head up to pickup our bikes for the morning ride to Maligne Canyon. Maligne: pronounced "mah-leen" from the French "mal" to infer sick, or evil as in "malicious". The Maligne River system was considered by the French Canadian fur traders and their native guides as a bit mysterious – and mysterious it is: Winding canyon, roaring water and exciting scenery. We end our bike ride at the canyon and push onto Maligne Lake enjoying a Picnic overlooking the lake. Join your CEO for the Bald Hills hike or choose from an optional canoe ride on the lake or the Spirit cruise. We head back to Jasper at end of day. We stop in Maligne valley for some wildlife observation. On good days we can observe: Elk, Moose, bears, and even the elusive wolf! Bike: mostly flat up to Maligne Canyon and then uphill (easy to moderate). Bald Hill, 4h moderate to difficult 13 km return, Elevation gain 480 metres (optional hike).
Approximate Distance: 100 km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (includes biking Maligne Canyon)
Day 4 Jasper/Lake Louise (1B,1L)
Back on the Icefield parkway we stop at Athabaska Glacier and Columbia Icefield. Optional snow coach tour. Our destination is Lake Louise. In Lake Louise we take time to savour the emerald bleu waters and breathtaking scenery. Tea anyone? Let’s walk to the Lake Agnès tea house. Others can walk down the easy trail to the lakes waterfront and decide to rent a canoe or relax on Chateau Lake Louise’s terrace. Overnight in Lake Louise. Lake Agnes trail: 2-3h moderate, 6.8 km return. Elevation gain 385 metres. OR Plains of 6 Glaciers: 3-4h moderate, 10.6 km return. Elevation gain 365 metres. OR combined: 4-5h, 14.6 km return (challenging).
Approximate Distance: 240km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (with stops, includes hiking Lake Agnes to the Tea House)
Day 5 Lake Louise/Yoho NP (1B,1L,1D)
Today we visit and hike in Yoho National Park. We first head to the famous Takakkaw Falls (the Cree word for “magnificent”) which are fed by the Daly Glacier and at 309 m (1,016 ft.) are the second highest falls in Canada. Next we discover the beautiful wilderness setting of Emerald Lake and its surroundings. A day of adventure, hiking and fun! In the evening we head back to the lodge. Takkakaw Falls & Emerald Lake – 2-3h total, easy, flat.
Approximate Distance: 150 km
Estimated Travel Time: 10 hrs (with stops, including Yoho National Park)
Day 6 Calgary (1B)
Our last day in the Canadian Rockies. We start with a short walk at Morraine Lake and breathe in the scenery for a last time. We then head towards Banff. Stop in Johnston Canyon for a small hike. Lunch in Banff. Enjoy free time in Banff for some optional activities such as biking, canoeing, rafting and more. Drive back to Calgary where our adventure ends at approx 5pm. Moraine Lake & Johnston Canyon – 2-3h total, easy, almost flat.
Approximate Distance: 250km
Estimated Travel Time: 8 hrs (with stops, including hiking Johnston Canyon)