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Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

McKees Rocks, PA
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Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

I am considering a tour of Banff and Jasper National Parks in July or August.

I will be riding through the park on my bicycle (I am an experienced cycling tourist). My friend will be supporting me in his rather large RV.

Since I will be riding through the park, the daily distances will be fairly short between campgrounds(30-60 miles a day). So we will need several reservations for a week or so at different campsites.

I realize that in making reservations, the sooner the better. But plans are still up in the air. How long can I wait before I really need to make reservations without too much problem?

Banff, Canada
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for Banff, Banff National Park
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1. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

If you are doing 30-60 miles a day, then your friend should be able to cover that distance in his RV in no time at all -- that would mean he'd get into the next campground very early in the day, so reservations shouldn't be necessary. That's my guess, anyway, but there are experienced RVers on this forum who will be able to speak from personal experience.

Jasper, Canada
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for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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2. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

You should check on the Parks Canada camping website, but I think reservations are taken only for some campgrounds. There is only one campground with fully serviced sites in each of Banff and Jasper National Parks (Whistler CG in Jasper NP, Wapiti CG also has some sites with power); none of the rest along the parkway have serviced sites. I would recommend reservations if you want a serviced site as they are in short supply.

Here is the camping page for Jasper NP (Banff's website also has one): pc.gc.ca/eng/…visit2.aspx

If you click the link for "2010 Campground Fees and Opening Dates", that will give you a list of them all, with dates (which will be similar for 2011) and amenities.

If you will be here on either of the long weekends in July or August (Canada Day, July 1) and Heritage Day (1st Monday in August), you will not want to change campgrounds from Thursday night until Monday morning - they tend to sell out on those weekends, and usually fill up from Thursday or Friday until Monday morning. If you do want to move, you will want to have a reservation.

Edited: 07 December 2010, 01:06
Calgary, Canada
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for Calgary
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3. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

Good points have already been made by Krp329 and banff.

If you absolutely must have a full hookup site for every night, then I would recommend reserving 4-6 weeks in advance; a longer lead time may be necessary if you're going to be staying over one of the summer long weekends listed by Krp329. The only campgrounds with full hookup sites are Tunnel Mountain in Banff (just within the Banff townsite) and Whistlers in Jasper, and the number of full hookup sites is limited in each of those campgrounds.

If, however, you can put up with a night or three without full hookups, then what Krp329 wrote is a pretty good description of what to expect.

Edited: 07 December 2010, 01:58
Edmonton, Canada
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4. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

Even on long weekends, there should be some sites that open up around 10 or 11 in the morning. For many visitors it's a holiday and not a long weekend, and they'll typically pack up and move on in the late morning - leaving their sites available. But those sites won't last long if it's a long weekend.

So be there in the morning and try your luck. It's worked for me.

Banff, Canada
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for Banff, Lake Louise
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5. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

The Bow Valley Parkway and the Icefields Parkway are world famous for cycle touring. I would time it so you are not travelling on a long weekend (less enjoyable for you, with more traffic on the road and full campsights). If possible, I would try and ride the Icefields Parkway mid-week. With your friend as "support-crew" I think you should be fine securing a spot in the AM. On the Icefields Parkway, travelling North I would recommend staying at Mosquitoe Creek, Waterfowl Lakes, Wilcox Creek (at the Columbia Icefields), Jonas Creek and Mt. Kerkeslin. Where you camp will depend on how far you intend to travel every day on your bike. None of these campgrounds offer reservations and you do have the benefit of having your "support crew" heading out early.

It all depends on how far you intend to travel every day on your bike. I would recommend staying a day at Wilcox to take a walk up Wilcox Pass and explore the Icefields Centre. Also, make a lunch stop at Horseshoe Lake (only 27km outside of Jasper) for the one of the best opportunities to "jump in a lake" and take a refreshing swim. Highly recommended for a sweaty cyclist. :)

The campgrounds on the Bow Valley Parkway offer a nice alternative to camping at Lake Louise. Most definitely take the time to spend a day in the area - if you have the time tand energy take a day to go hiking at Lake Louise.


6. Re: Banff / Jasper drop dead dates for RV reservations>

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