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Help with itinerary - Banff/Jasper - teenager involved!

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Help with itinerary - Banff/Jasper - teenager involved!

We are in the early stages of planning a six night trip with our teenage son. We will be flying in/out of Calgary in early August. We are trying to strike a balance between sights and adventure, and also trying to avoid an excess of driving. We want to do some rafting, hiking, horseback riding, kayaking and drive a good portion of the Icefields Parkway for sights. Maybe some mountain biking, but that is not a must, since we are not experienced. We would like to do these activities in the most scenic areas so as to get the most bang for our buck/time. Any suggestions on where to do these activities would be very helpful.

My first thoughts were two nights in Banff at the Rimrock (can take the bus to town?), followed by two nights in Jasper somewhere, then two nights in Lake Louise somewhere (Baker Creek?) before driving back to Calgary. But then I started thinking...it seems like we could get alot in without actually staying in Jasper? I don't want to miss the most incredible sights, but from Baker Creek can we drive the parkway up to a point...say, to the Icefield Center for an ice walk...and back in a (non-rushed) day? I think we could also see Peyto Lake, for example, from a base in Lake Louise like Baker Creek?

We may never be back, so I don't want to regret missing Jasper proper, but I mainly don't want to try to fit too much in since we are there such a short time.

Thanks so much for your help!

Mahtomedi, Minnesota
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for Glacier National Park
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1. Re: Help with itinerary - Banff/Jasper - teenager involved!

Do not miss Jasper. I liked it better than Banff. Less tourists and traffic. Not as pretentious. Beautiful scenery.

Jasper, Canada
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for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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2. Re: Help with itinerary - Banff/Jasper - teenager involved!

It is possible to drive part of the Icefields Parkway as a day trip from a base in Banf or Lake Louise... from LL to the Icefields and back is about four hours of straight driving time (a bit over five hours, if it's Banff instead), but there are lots and lots of scenic stops to make on the way, so I would plan for an entire day of it.

However, there is plenty to see and do here in Jasper National Park besides just the southern part that you will see when you drive the Icefields Parkway, but you do really need to be based in Jasper to see much else.

By the way, the first weekend of August is a long weekend - the very busiest time of the summer tourist season here in the Canadian Rockies - so if your holiday includes that time, I would recommend booking as soon as you have finalized your itinerary.

3. Re: Help with itinerary - Banff/Jasper - teenager involved!

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Removed on: 11 May 2014, 05:17