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Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

bedford
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Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

It seems that when I am reading the preferred route for the normal - Calgary/Banff/LL/Jasper vacation is to go either from Calgary to LL then to Jasper and then hit Banff on the way back or Banff then all the way to Jasper and hit LL on the way back then to Calgary.

(I might not have that all right above from all the POSTS I am reading…so trying to get my head around what seems to be the best driving itinerary (without knowing number of days yet and if I put Yoho in there).

Example:

Arrive Calgary - Banff (stay) - (skip LL) - Jasper (stay) - Lake Louise (stay) - Calgary

Arrive Calgary - Skip Banff - Lake Louise (stay) - Jasper (stay) - Banff (stay) - Calgary

Etc.

Would love to hear some thoughts on the itinerary and confirm what.I am thinking it must be to break of the drive each way. Any other routes/itineraries..and Reasons for them

OR 6 of 1 half dozen of the other (not even sure I got that saying right :-)

Edmonton, Canada
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1. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

Yeah, six vs half a dozen. Flip a coin. :)

Maybe the availability of rooms will make the decision for you.

seattle
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for Seattle
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2. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

I don't know if there is a set order. Am assuming your flying in and out of YYC. LL is very small and expensive rooms so many people just stay in Banff and do LL as a day trip perhaps with Moraine and Yoho. Its possible to do without moving to LL for the nite. Since Jasper is a long day trip with multiple stops some people just do the parkway one way, then on the way back stop at the Columbia Icefields to do the excursion before heading back to Banff or Calgary. I don't really think it matters how you do it. The daylight hrs are great once your in the rockies so you have daylight at 9:30 so you have a lot of time to sightsee.

Jasper, Canada
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for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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3. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

It also depends on your flight times in and out of YYC, and how much time you have for driving to the airport.... 1.5 to 2 hours to Banff, about 45 minutes further to Lake Louise, and five hours to Jasper (but you will want to make stops when driving the Icefields Parkway between Jasper and Lake Louise).

bedford
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4. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

thanks guys…appreciate it…from these answers really seems like it doesn't matter….and the driving from the first day I can see depending on when we arrive. Also hotel/lodge accommodations being available..

Toronto
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for Algonquin Provincial Park
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5. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

Between Banff and LL just stay where you'd feel comfortable. Banff is a full town with all the amenities. LL really just consists of a bunch of hotels and a small plaza with a grocery store etc. Yes there are expensive hotels in LL but there's also a hostel (with private rooms available if you want) so a bit of a range exists. The communities are only 40ish minutes apart so really it's like choosing which side of a big city to stay in, distance-wise. Perhaps as your trip comes closer you'll have a better sense of the specific activities you want to do in the Banff/LL area and can factor convenience into your decision.

Edited: 13 December 2013, 15:17
bedford
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6. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

Tweedswolf….you are right..I think once I have more of my activities..I will figure that out too. I wanted to make sure there wasn't any other good reason to go one way vs the other that I wasn't thinking about.

Ie. drive NORTH to this park because of views etc or easier to pull off road etc. Traffic etc.

Seems like it is more:

1. Time of arrival to get started - how far you could get before dark etc

2. How long we want to drive in general

3. Accommodation availability.

Otherwise it is pretty much a loop but no other factors.

(if we add Glacier NP…then it might be a one way fly in and out - but still I would think the Canada Rockies would be the same type of itinerary).

Burlington, Canada
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7. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

What is the duration of your trip? If you plan on staying in Banff for a couple of days you could also do a side trip to the Kananaskis region. It's a very nice area that often gets overlooked. If you're a golfer you'll find two 18-hole championship courses located there.

Calgary, Canada
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for Calgary
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8. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

Sadly, the Kananaskis golf course was seriously damaged by the June 2013 floods. It is not known at this time if it will ever reopen.

bedford
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9. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

Krusty..right now it is two weeks. The amt of time in the Rockies will depend on if we decide to go to Knight Inlet..we are still discussing that.. if we do it would change the Rockies to probably a 9 night trip...

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: Very Basic Directional/Order of stops Question For Driving

I think the main drift of the advice is just against people moving from Banff to LL (or the reverse). Most of us feel that they are just too close together to make it worth the fuss of changing hotels for. Some people are very drawn to the romance and the beauty of LL and feel very compelled to stay there, and many hikers feel that it is closer to the trails they want to do, but the very small village makes it less desirable for more than a couple of nights. However, if people are doing the up-and-back drive between Jasper and Calgary, then there is a good argument to be made for staying in both Banff and LL by breaking it up the way you have laid it out, but how you arrange your nights isn't really too important. Again, I think its more about avoiding trying to get all the way from Jasper back to the airport on the day you fly as much as anything.

If you decide to also try to get to Knight Inlet, fly directly from Calgary to Comox on Vancouver Island with WestJet. Don't add the complication of trying to get there through Vancouver International.