Banff & Jasper - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Camping | Places, Gear and Planning > Trips and Travel Planning
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 06-16-2014, 03:18 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Illinois, Illinois
Trailer: Escape 21
Posts: 219
Banff & Jasper

I've read over the pertinent posts on the forum regarding Banff and Jasper, but I have a question that I want to throw out for feedback now. We have made our plans for travel to Chilliwack and had originally planned to stay in Banff for three nights and Jasper for two nights. But we have made some adjustments due to travel times and distances so that we can get to Chilliwack earlier the day before our orientation and pick up (rather than traveling all the way to from Jasper to Chilliwack the day before pick up). So do we change our plans to stay in Banff for three nights and Jasper one night or Banff for two nights and Jasper for two nights? I would appreciate hearing thoughts from folks who have been in the area and have a recommendation for us. I know we cannot go wrong when in the midst of the Canadian Rockies, but any helpful advice would be most appreciated! Thanks all!
__________________

tash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 03:28 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Dave Walter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 2013 19' & 2013 15B
Posts: 2,333
Sounds from your post (but is not clear) that you are planning on seeing Banff/Jasper before picking up your trailer, is that correct? Could you clarify this, as it makes a huge difference whether you want to camp in tents, stay in hotels, or stay in your new Escape trailer.

Although Banff is a beautiful place to see, I am personally not a big fan of the bigger crowds in Banff as compared to Jasper. If it was me (and I was staying in my new Escape), I would stay only 1 night in Banff, spend a second night near Lake Louise, spend a third night on the Columbia Icefield Parkway, and then spend a fourth and fifth night in Jasper. If I were tenting, I would do the same itinerary.
__________________

__________________
2013 19' \ 2013 15B, 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser

"It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it." - 1907, Maurice Switzer
Dave Walter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 03:35 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Kelowna, British Columbia
Trailer: 2008 Escape 17b
Posts: 1,890
Banff and Jasper are part of Canada's National Parks and as such have extra fees.

Parks Canada - Parks Canada - List of Fees
J Mac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 03:37 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Illinois, Illinois
Trailer: Escape 21
Posts: 219
Dave, thanks for your reply. We are stopping in Banff and Jasper on our way to Chilliwack, so will be without the trailer. So we will be in pet friendly hotels--thought about tenting but decided that would be too much work on this trip if we wanted to get there sooner than later! And then we will head home via the northern US.

Ideally, we would have more time to explore that area, so I very much appreciate your insights!
tash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 03:43 PM   #5
Member
 
alan in alberta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: St Albert, Alberta
Trailer: 2006 Escape 17B
Posts: 87
I would lean to the Lake Louise and Jasper areas as they are less commercial. 5 days is not enough but it will be a good start. A yearly National Parks pass is about the same cost as 7 nights so if you may want that as it is good in all Canadian National Parks

The Banff Jasper Parkway is awesome but has a few hills
alan in alberta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 04:51 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Terrace, British Columbia
Trailer: 2012 Escape 19
Posts: 351
We just drove the Columbia Ice Fields Parkway from Lake Louise to Jasper and the road is terrible. Lots of frost heaves and cracks. Extremely bumpy. We lost the glass turntable for the microwave and a casserole from one of the shelves. We were only driving at 80kph. Many of the facilities are not yet open. Very disappointing.
__________________
We're still have'n fun...
NuthatchBC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 04:52 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
BCnomad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: O town, British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 "Lightning"
Posts: 1,470
Since you asked, I would choose to split that 400+ mile drive from Jasper to Chilliwack into 2 days -- giving option to at least travel the #1 TCH part of the way. I believe most would say that the TCH is a far more interesting route than the Coq, albeit more time.

If you feel adventurous, the BC Highway 24 route connector looks interesting, to say the least.


YMMV.
BCnomad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 05:10 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Dave Walter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 2013 19' & 2013 15B
Posts: 2,333
Quote:
Originally Posted by justmeinbc View Post
Since you asked, I would choose to split that 400+ mile drive from Jasper to Chilliwack into 2 days -- giving option to at least travel the #1 TCH part of the way. I believe most would say that the TCH is a far more interesting route than the Coq, albeit more time.

If you feel adventurous, the BC Highway 24 route connector looks interesting, to say the least.
YMMV.
Good point about the rough road. If you are looking for a super-highway where you can cruise rock stable at high speeds, it is best not to attempt the Columbia Icefields Parkway. On the other hand, if you are looking for magnificent high alpine and glacier views unparallelled anywhere else in the world (do I sound like an advertisement), then by all means slow down and enjoy the drive!
__________________
2013 19' \ 2013 15B, 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser

"It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it." - 1907, Maurice Switzer
Dave Walter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 06:25 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
dave macrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: St.Albert, Alberta
Trailer: 21 ft November 17th
Posts: 847
" the Columbia Icefields highway has a few hills" thats funny stuff
__________________
MacRae, 21ft
2016 GMC Yukon SLT
St.Albert Alberta
dave macrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 08:18 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Dave Walter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 2013 19' & 2013 15B
Posts: 2,333
Quote:
Originally Posted by NuthatchBC View Post
We just drove the Columbia Ice Fields Parkway from Lake Louise to Jasper and the road is terrible. Lots of frost heaves and cracks. Extremely bumpy. We lost the glass turntable for the microwave and a casserole from one of the shelves. We were only driving at 80kph. Many of the facilities are not yet open. Very disappointing.
Oops, my above post was supposed to be in response to this post, not that of justmeinbc.
__________________
2013 19' \ 2013 15B, 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser

"It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it." - 1907, Maurice Switzer
Dave Walter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 08:59 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Kamloops, British Columbia
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 249
I would go to Lake Louise stay 1 night then head up the Icefields Parkway towards Jasper early in the morning. On the way to Jasper consider a 2-3 hr hike up Parker Ridge just south of the Icefields, visit the Icefields Parkway centre to purchase a Skywalk ticket, while waiting for the ride out to the Skywalk, drive across the road to the Athabaska glacier parking lot and walk the short loop. When not camping we like to stay at Becker's Chalets just south of Jasper - quiet and clean. I would then stay 2-3 nights and consider visit places like Mt Edith Cavell and Maligne Lake. You could head back a little quicker via Valemont to Kamloops then over the Coqihalla to Chilliwack - about 8 hrs driving in total. Suggest stop at Mt Robson on your way to Kamloops.
gharper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 09:23 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
fudge_brownie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Janesville, WI, Wisconsin
Trailer: Escape 19 (sold) Escape 21 2014
Posts: 1,496
GHarper and I must have been on the same tour bus. The recommended itinerary of Lake Louise, the Icefields, Parker Ridge, Maligne Lake, Mt Edith Cavell and even Becker's Cabins is identical to a trip we took last fall without the Escape. Check out the Wilcox Pass hike, most hikes are well described on line.

I thought the Icefields Parkway was beautiful, I thought the Icefields Visitors Center was a bust and would not recommend the stop. As the two of you are familiar with US National Parks, this facility is not anything like you are used to. There is a movie that you pay for, eating establishments that cater to bus loads and a ticket booth to book a ride over the glacier in a balloon tire bus. There is no orientation program, help desk, brochures, exhibits or warm friendly facility. I would compare this place to a bus terminal. But the area around the facility is superb, just skip the bus station.

I would say again the best areas are Lake Louise and Jasper. If time is an issue, skip Banff. Also be prepared for tourist prices, everything is expensive.
__________________
Paul and Janet Braun
2003 Toyota 4Runner V8 now 2012 Toyota Sequoia V8
Escape 19' 2010 now 2014 Escape 21'
fudge_brownie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2014, 11:02 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Jim Bennett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 14,456
Though Banff is closer for me, I do prefer the Jasper area. Could be because I head out to Banff area lots every year, mountain biking, skiing, visiting, or just driving through. I do try to avoid the townsite if possible.

The Icefields Parkway has to be one of the most beautiful drives I have done, and even after around 100 trips on it, I still enjoy the beauty
__________________
2017 Escape 5.0 TA
2015 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost
2009 Escape 19 (previous)
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln
Jim Bennett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2014, 01:07 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Nanoose Bay, British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 5.0 TA
Posts: 143
Hi Tash,

I'm going to suggest something quite different... as a third generation Albertan.

Banff, Lake Louise & Jasper are certainly beautiful. However, I've had the good fortune to travel a fair bit of the US. All mountain scenery is beautiful, but all said, quite similar. On the other hand, seeing things unique is something again... eg. Mt. Rushmore... Stone Mountain in Atlanta... Lewis & Clark Caverns in Montana... Old Faithful at Yellowstone... need I go on.

Therefore when out here, consider the following:

Turrell Museum in Drumheller, AB... Dinosaur Provincial Park... Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump... Frank Slide...

All of these have world class interpretive centres and can only be found here. Like the Great Wall of China, that I visited on a number of occasions.

One can Google these for more direction & info. If you go... I'll bet a lunch that they will blow the hell out of Banff, Jasper, etc... LOL

Okay you fellow Albertans... let me have it!!!

Travel Safe,

Larry
Stargeezer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2014, 03:54 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
JohnB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2012 15A
Posts: 396
For me the big problem with these places is that they are all really interesting and that I want to see it all. On a short trip like the one tash has planned it is not possible to see it all. No matter which route you chose you can be assured that it will be a great experience.

I have lived in both northern and southern BC for over 60 years now and traveled extensively in both BC and a fair bit in Alberta. I am always amazed that there is still more to do and see out there. I guess that is what keeps us all out in our Escape trailers enjoying both new experiences and repeating old ones that we love.
Sometimes the more advice you get the more difficult it is to chose what you can fit in. There are no wrong choices so just enjoy the ride.

We are headed to Japser this week and ending up in northern BC for a family wedding. Done that trip many times but still looking forward to it again.

I do vote for Jasper over Banff. But I do have more experience staying in the Jasper area than Banff. I guess part of the decision is what you like to do when you are visiting these new places. Ride bikes, motorcycles, hike, fish, eat, drink, museums, bus tours, ski, canoe/kayak, boat tours, wildlife watching or just relax and smell the roses.

The Icefield Parkway is definitely a must do.

The drive form Longview, south of Calgary Alberta up through Kananaskis on Highway 40 is another beautiful drive. End up in Canmore and then Banff. This is a popular drive to do on motorcycles.

Reading this forum has enlightened me on several places that I have never been to but would love to go. Utah and Arizona are on my to do list. Hopefully I will get to strike them off the To Do List some day and add them to the completed list.
JohnB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2014, 06:16 AM   #16
Site Team
 
padlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Southwick, Massachusetts
Trailer: 5.0 TA #6, 2012 F150 EB
Posts: 6,063
Quote:
Originally Posted by NuthatchBC View Post
We just drove the Columbia Ice Fields Parkway from Lake Louise to Jasper and the road is terrible. Lots of frost heaves and cracks. Extremely bumpy. We lost the glass turntable for the microwave and a casserole from one of the shelves. We were only driving at 80kph. Many of the facilities are not yet open. Very disappointing.
We had the same problem (microwave turntable falling out, denting the stovetop and shattering) on a drive to the campground at Fundy National Park down a bad washboard road. We took it that we had not completely latched the MW door. Checking such is now on our preflight mental checklist.
__________________
Happy Motoring
Bob
padlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2014, 05:14 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Illinois, Illinois
Trailer: Escape 21
Posts: 219
Thank you all for your insights and recommendations--really appreciate the feedback! Only 25 days until we leave Illinois for Chilliwack!
__________________

tash is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:16 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×