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Alberta and BC

Bury St Edmunds...
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Alberta and BC

We are travelling to Canada middle of next June 2013, Flying into Calagry and Flying out of Vancouver for 14 days.

We were planning to do Banff, Lake Louise, Jasper, Whistler, Tofino

and Vancouver using an RV, would also like to do some mountain biking, Rafting etc while were there.

Would all this be do able in the time given, or is this trying to fit to much in. If not has anyone ideas what is best to leave out and what is best to see, and any other ideas you may have. without spending 14 days behind the wheel and not achieving anything.

thanks in advance

Vancouver, Canada
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1. Re: Alberta and BC

It starts to get tight when you throw in Tofino. Its all doable, so it just depends on the pace you want to set yourselves. Personally, I lean towards spending a few extra nights really seeing a place and skipping some other places which, while worth seeing, you don't really have time to do properly, so it just wouldn't be worth it.

Also, June is very early season in this part of the world. Things will still be fairly snowy and icy in the Rockies, and we've been getting some very wet weather in May and June on the coast. July through September is the optimal time, IMO.

What you might want to do is break this trip into two distinct parts. Tour the Rockies and eastern BC (as I know there is some great mountain biking opportunities in the east Kootenays) and then fly from Calgary to Comox on Vancouver island and spend a few days on the west coast.

Doing the intended plan as a one-way RV tour is achievable, but won't leave much time for doing more than driving, seeing the highlights, and moving on.

Jasper, Canada
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for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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2. Re: Alberta and BC

Have a read through some of the trip reports that are in the Travellers Article linked second from the top in the "Top Questions" over to the right of this page. You'll find lots of helpful stuff there, including ideas for itineraries, and people's observations at various times of the year. You may also find this Travellers Article useful:


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3. Re: Alberta and BC

Hi Paul,

Very sound advice from Vancouverite 67 IMO.

You have in mind a 'tight' trip timewise but an RV is not the fastest way of getting around, especially if road conditions aren't good. Going on unsurfaced roads invalidates insurance BTW.

You may not be aware that you are not allowed to just pull up and set up an RV anywhere- designated camps only. Also, 14 days rental along with fuel, camp fees and the one-way drop fee is likely to knock a big hole in £3,000.

I can see by your personal logo image that the RV is a good fit with your recreational pursuits but it will also hinder you at other times (eg Vancouver/ maybe Van Is.)

British Columbia...
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4. Re: Alberta and BC

I agree 2 weeks will barely leave you enough time to cover all the places. Trying to fit in some great rides here in the Rockies you won't even scratch the surface of the riding. To much time in the RV can be better spent on the trails.

Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: Alberta and BC

Hi Paul ~

Are you choosing an RV consciously? or because it sounds like a great way to "save money" or to not worry about accommodations?

With 14 days, you could do something like 3 nights, Banff, 3 nights Jasper, 2 nights across the province to the coast (850 km of distance), 2 nights Whistler area, straight to Tofino (~8 hour drive) for 3 nights then back to 1-2 nights Vancouver before your flight out. Pretty rushed, but achieving more than "not anything."

Squamish, just an hour drive south of Whistler, will be holding their Test of Metal in June. The area has a huge interest in mountain biking and has excellent trail infrastructure in place. There are course maps and more information on the following website. Accommodation is tight.


You could do a circle route out of Calgary for the Rockies (no one way drop fee for the rental vehicle.) Flying to Comox is a great idea from V67, rent the vehicle out and back from Comox, then hop a plane to Vancouver to connect with your flight out. You could also fly to Vancouver and drive over to VI and back to Vancouver for your flight out (no one way drop fee here either, but additional cost for the ferry.) You could also fly to Victoria from Calgary nonstop, rent a car from there, drive 5 hours to Pacific Rim National Park, then back to Victoria airport for a hop back to Vancouver, connecting to your flight out.

In this scenario, you could do 3 nights Banff, 3 nights Jasper, 1 night Calgary, fly to Comox (3 hours drive to Tofino), Victoria (5 hours drive to T) Vancouver (7 hours drive to T) for 3 nights in Pacific Rim National Park, then back to Vancouver for 3 nights before your flight out.

6. Re: Alberta and BC

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