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Banff in March

Houston, Texas
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69 posts
125 reviews
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Banff in March

Hi all, I'm wanting to visit Banff in March and don't really know how the roads will be. I've never driven in snow and I'm nervous about it. Is it safe?

Calgary, Canada
Destination Expert
for Canadian Rockies
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5,796 posts
3 reviews
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1. Re: Banff in March

March is definitely winter, but the drive to Banff is generally fine as it's on a wide, divided highway. It's usually well maintained, and is very rarely closed (floods excepting!). There's always the chance of nasty weather, and you just have to pay attention to the weather & road reports - if it's dicey, then you hang out in Calgary until it clears up. It also helps to get a rental car with proper snow tires (not just all seasons) - you don't need a monster SUV, just a solid car/small SUV with good clearance and that's not too lightweight.

The roads that tend to be nasty are beyond Banff, particularly between Lake Louise and Jasper. If you haven't driven in snow, then you want to avoid the Icefields Highway in the winter. You can always take one of the tours (SunDogs?) which provides shuttles/tour buses between Jasper and Lake Louise.

If you are really not confident, it's always possible to get an airport shuttle or other bus to Banff, and use local transport, taxis, walk etc. But, as long as you use common sense (don't drive in blizzard!, slow down if it's slippery or snowy etc), you should be OK.

Houston, Texas
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69 posts
125 reviews
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2. Re: Banff in March

Thank You! Your info makes me feel better about driving around Banff. I visited last September but really wanted to see a snow covered paradise! Thanks for the input!

Banff, Canada
Destination Expert
for Banff, Banff National Park
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6,159 posts
93 reviews
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3. Re: Banff in March

Good for you, Mark, for recognizing that winter driving needs to be taken seriously. I agree with the advice above, and will just add this link:

tripadvisor.ca/Travel-g153339-c55003/Canada:…

for some good info about winter driving in general.

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
69 posts
125 reviews
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4. Re: Banff in March

Thank You for the information!!!

Edmonton, Canada
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3,934 posts
57 reviews
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5. Re: Banff in March

you have to always be aware of conditions and work around them. for example, today several highways around the banff, jasper, bc border regions were closed (some sections still are) due to avalanches. so, winter plans "are never set in stone"...

6. Re: Banff in March

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