Join us for this all-new, bucket-list-worthy adventure through Western Canada. By day, we’ll ride amid the towering peaks of the Canadian Rockies and, on several nights, we’ll soak tired muscles in some of Canada’s most beautiful hot springs. We’ll cycle through part of the Crown of the Continent ecosystem, which stretches from the Elk and Highwood river basins of British Columbia and Alberta to Montana’s Blackfoot River Valley. We’ll pedal past glaciers and alpine lakes while taking in some of Western Canada’s most stunning national parks, sharing the road with more wildlife than vehicles at times, and making camp in charming mountain towns.
|Start Date:||Jul 18, 2014||End Date:||Aug 03, 2014|
|Start Location:||Whitefish, MT||End Location:||Whitefish, MT|
|Total Days:||16||Riding Days:||12|
|Average Daily Mileage:||63.8||Surface:||Paved|
|Riders:||14||Elevation Alert:||107K' Elev Gain|
|Airport:||Glacier Intl / Calgary Intl||Tour Leader:||Jack Pettry, Heather Myer|
|Type:||Self Contained||Physical Difficulty:||Advanced|
|Level of Support:||Self Contained||Cost:||$1,849.00|
Banff. After arriving in Banff, Alberta, you’ll meet your fellow travelers, take on your share of the group gear, and enjoy a delicious meal. You may want to arrive in Banff early to explore the national park and enjoy the arts and culture downtown. You might even choose to rent a mountain bike and sample the northernmost reaches of Adventure Cycling’s Great Divide Mountain Bike Route.
Jasper. After a hearty breakfast, we’ll hop aboard a shuttle for the three-hour ride to Jasper, giving us time to get acquainted. Once checked in, we can tool around Jasper and maybe do a short shakedown ride.
Jasper to Wilcox Creek, 67 miles. We’ll start out with a bang, as our first riding day takes in some of the world’s most spectacular mountain scenery. The Icefields Parkway is considered one of Canada’s national treasures, and with good reason. Stretching 144 miles through the heart of the Rockies, the route gets us up close and personal with the alpine lakes and high peaks of the ranges. Watch for bear, moose, bighorn sheep, and other wildlife.
Wilcox Creek to Mosquito Creek, 62 miles. After breakfast, a meal that always seems to taste better outdoors, we’ll set off for another magnificent day along the Icefields Parkway. Like yesterday, the “traffic” along the roadway might include grizzlies, mountain goats, elk, golden eagles, and possibly even wolves and cougars. Tonight we’ll keep our tents packed away and stay indoors at the Mosquito Creek Hostel.
Mosquito Creek to Vermillion Crossing, 58 miles. The scenery is majestic and the wildlife abundant, but there’s another enhancing feature of the Icefields Parkway: The flora. You may, for example, notice the Krummholz, or “twisted trees,” which are stunted trees growing amid harsh, windy conditions, often near timberline. They’re readily identifiable by their distinctive curves, scattered among stands of aspen and pine. Wildflowers abound as well amidst the alpine grasses.
Vermillion Crossing to Fairmont Hot Springs, 63 miles. We’ll arrive at the first hot springs of our trip tonight, world-renowned Fairmont Hot Springs. Any muscle soreness you may have earned you can soak away in the crystal-clear mineral pools that also provide mind-boggling views of the mountains you just descended. Your reward for a week of mountain riding!
Fairmont Hot Springs to Kimberley, 60 miles. Kimberley’s motto is “A Good Place to Be” and it perfectly sums up our home for the night. Here you can once again soak in earth-heated waters, visit one or more of the town’s museums, or sip a beer from a craft brewery. Or, why not do all three?
Kimberley to Cranbrook, 18 miles. Today’s short mileage will permit you to spend additional time exploring Kimberley; or, alternatively, ride early and spend the lion’s share of the day in bustling Cranbrook. You can take a walking tour of the historic downtown, saddle up for a horseback ride, or relax in the comfortable Purcell House Hostel, our home away from home tonight.
Cranbrook to Creston, 66 miles. A beautiful ride through the foothills of the Rockies takes us past the waters of Moyie Lake, before we continue on to Creston. The town’s relatively low elevation, around 2,000 feet above sea level, translates to a long growing season, and Creston is indeed known for its fresh produce.
Creston to Kaslo, 78 miles. Today we’ll head north, skirting the shores of Duck and Kootenay lakes. We’ll travel the east side of Kootenay Lake before hopping aboard a ferry to Kaslo, population 1,000, making it the largest community on the lake. We’ll soak at Ainsworth Hot Springs, where the hot-water-filled caves are unique and unforgettable.
Kaslo to Nakusp, 58 miles. We’ll leave Lake Kootenay today, only to reach the shores of Slocan Lake, along which we’ll ride for several miles. Our home for the night is Nakusp, with even more relaxing hot springs.
Nakusp to Revelstoke, 66 miles. Arrow Lake guides our way north along its tree-lined shores to Revelstoke. Tonight’s camp boasts one of the most spectacular views we’ll earn on the entire trip, as this upper Columbia River town is bordered by Mount Revelstoke National Park and the Kootenay Rockies, with Glacier National Park (British Columbia’s version, not to be confused with Montana’s) looming to the east.
Revelstoke to Canyon Hot Springs, 21 miles. We’ll travel along the Trans-Canada Highway today through the grand landscape of Mount Revelstoke National Park. One of the world’s longest highways, the Trans-Canada travels through all ten provinces, from the Pacific to the Atlantic, making it one of the world’s longest highways. Canyon Hot Springs Resort is our little piece of heaven on Earth tonight.
Canyon Hot Springs to Golden, 72 miles. Another day on the Trans-Canada Highway takes us through Canada’s Glacier National Park. Time permitting, a wildlife tour out of Golden will offer the chance to see wolves and grizzly bears up close — but not too close!
Golden to Lake Louise, 54 miles. Another beautiful day along the Trans-Canada Highway offers a easy ride through beautiful landscapes ending at Lake Louise for our last night of camping.
Lake Louise to Banff, 37 Miles. Our epic, two-week Canadian journey concludes with a nice, gentle ride back to Banff. The adventure is over, but the memories will no doubt have you planning your next trip to the Great White North sooner than later.
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"An excellent tour, thanks very much! All the personnel were terrific. I will definitely be back for more."
2008 TOUR PARTICIPANT
"15 strangers, 30 days, and 1,500 miles of coastline lay before me on ACA's Northwest Coast Tour in September of 2006...we all made it to San Francisco; afterwards, our group leader termed us 'superglue': we left camp each morning mostly together, we stopped at the same coffee shops and bakeries along the way, we ate lunch together. Three years later, we still send group emails back and forth. I came back from this trip raring to go on another one."
"Our tour leader was excellent. The other cyclists became my friends. A wonderful experience. Can't wait to do my next tour."
2008 Tour Participant
" I was very encouraged by the "older" people in the group, a real inspiration to be able to keep cycling and having fun for a long time."
2009 TOUR PARTICIPANT