We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Level Contributor
1,440 posts
149 reviews
Save Topic
Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

I picked up a copy of United Airlines inflight magazine (July issue) and there was a reference to the "Spokane Loop", but it really didn't give many details. All that was written was a paragraph.

The description of the route had the traveler flying in and out of Spokane. The loop was listed as 845 miles. The little article had a very simple line drawing, showing no cities other than Spokane and Calgary. The route appeared to go a bit northeast, up into Canada, then take a little side trip, on up into an area with mountains (shown on this very simple line drawing), head east to Calgary, then circle around back into the US and back to Spokane.

Does anyone know the specifics of this route? It looks like an interesting drive - if I only knew more of the specifics.

Thanks.

Everett, Washington
Level Contributor
2,399 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

For others to assist Article is here:

hemispheresmagazine.com/2010/…

Scroll down to Spokane Loop bit.

I can think of a dozen variations on this theme but basically a trip up to Banff in Canada and the side trip is likely the Icefields Parkway up towards jasper. Very beautiful drive although a quick look at maps might suggest alternative routes. Personally I would make it less of a loop through Idaho and Montana and instead a loop within British Columbia. We've done most of the area as well s those mentioned in the article.

One of our favorite hot springs places is at Ainsworth on Kootenay Lake north of Nelson, BC. really nice small hotel with unique hot springs cave in a stunning location along the lake. Then an easy day to Banff via Revelstoke and passing awesome Takakaw Falls in Yoho NP http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takakkaw_Falls

Banff is a nice but expensice tourist town but the hot springs facility there is good (if crowded) and the tram ride on the Banff Gondola has amzing views:

http://www.explorerockies.com/banff-gondola/

Then Vermillion Pass on Hwy 93 south to Radium and 95 & US-95 back towards Spokane. I would allow at least 5-6 days to really appreciate it all and also allow for better chances at a few clear days in the fickle weather up that way.

seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
18,985 posts
108 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

I work as a tour guide and there are companies that do a tour similar. Sometimes if you look at a professional companies itinerary it will help you plan a logical routing.

Look at

grand circle travel. They actually do a Seattle to Spokane, up to Banff type trip. The one I'm pretty familiar with is with

caravan.com

which does a glacier NP trip from Calgary but could be done from Spokane to "Spokane just the same.

Level Contributor
1,440 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Sequim88 - is there a link in Hemispheres magazine that tells me more about this loop? Am I missing something? I see just the brief paragraph, but without much detail.

Davidmg - that's a great idea to just look at routing done by tour companies. Hate to take business from you, but we like traveling on our own - can't stick to a good timetable!

We're always looking for nice drives, seeing places in different places.

seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
18,985 posts
108 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

its a good planning tool. On the forums everyone always asks about routing etc and where to stop and by looking at companies routings and overnight stops its easy enough to duplicate. I don't think its competition, and one day you may be on one of my tours.

Level Contributor
1,440 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Davidmg - you also helped me with a Seattle trip last summer! I love running into people again here on the TA boards. Thanks!

Spokane, Washington
Level Contributor
10,456 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

wintersummer, in my opinion you don't need a tour to do this trip just rent a car and go, easy. As Sequim88 said there are a lot of variations on this and it could be fun to plan. From Spokane into Montana and Glacier park up into Canada. See Banff and Ainsworth or go from Spokane over to Yellowstone and catch Glacier along the way to or from. Montana has some awesome places to see and experience then at some point go up into Canada. Time it for the Calgary stampede always a awesome time and thus it goes, so much to see and do just in those places alone I've mentioned. People on the Montana board could have some good ideas to.

Collie

seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
18,985 posts
108 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Thank you, appreciate it

I wasn't suggesting a tour, just to use an existing tour to give an idea of routing etc.

Spokane, Washington
Level Contributor
10,456 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

David, I knew that I just mentioned it in case they had thought about taking one.

Collie

Golden, Canada
Destination Expert
for Regina
Level Contributor
4,181 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Without the "simple line drawing" from the magazine, which is the one linked in the first reply, it's impossible to map out their intended route based on that vague paragraph.

There is no official route know as the "Spokane Loop". However I suspect part of it is the International Selkirk Loop. A portion of the remainder would be the Icefields Parkway between Jasper and Lake Louise.

I did up a quick Google Maps route that I think is about the best option not using the magazine info except for the general area and start/end point. Crowsnest Pass and Kootenay NP are just two of the spots missed on this route, but you can't hit all the spots in one loop. Add a sidetrip to Nelson, BC from Balfour, BC after the ferry crossing of Kootenay Lake.

http://tinyurl.com/24hk8jd

Level Contributor
1,440 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Spokane Loop - Can you tell me more about this drive?

Thanks to all of you helping me with routing on this. I love the Google map and the suggestions. If we can't figure out what the magazine is recommending, you are all just helping me put it together. I went to the magazine's website and I'll past in what it said about the "loop". the line drawing wasn't in the web article. And, the print version wasn't all that great. I was confused a bit because the magazine made this sound as if everyone knew about it (like Route 66!)

THE SPOKANE LOOP

845 MILES // Get into a meditative groove on this mountainous cruise from Spokane through Idaho and Montana to British Columbia, Canada. Stop in Wallace, Idaho, for a ride along the Hiawatha Mountain Bike Trail (rentals available at the trailhead), then stay the night at the elegant Whitefish Mountain Resort, in Whitefish, Montana. Afterward, check out the Buffalo Jump, a precarious cliff (never mind why they call it that), and finally get wet in some hot springs in Banff, Alberta, where you can lounge in pools that look out on the Canadian Rockies.

Get answers to your questions about Spokane