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Banff Loop

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Old 12-26-2018, 10:30 PM
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Trying to plan a ride to Banff Area. Most likely leave the Kallispell area on Hwy 2, through Creston, Kootenay Ferry, Nakusp, Upper Arrow Lake Ferry, Revelstoke, Kamloops, Jasper, Banff. I hope to stay a couple of days near Banff and possibly ride back up to Jasper and back. And one day ride west to Revelstoke and back. Is it possible to ride to Jasper and back in a day or is that too ambitious? I plan to mostly tent camp. I have no idea on timing for the days ride, sightseeing, crooked roads, border crossings, ferries, etc..

Maybe the first night in Naksup? About 300 miles? Then up to Valemount? About 390 Miles? Then down to the Banff Area. I have searched and found a lot of comments about the area and copied them. Any recommendations other than Banff area to overnight at that is still in that area? Anyone have any suggestions for where to overnight? Campgrounds?

Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
 
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Old 12-26-2018, 11:52 PM
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Creston to Revelstoke is a nice day & a world class Bucket Ride. Some nice campsites and motels in Revy ...... Revelstoke to Jasper, via Kamloops, on Day two. Jasper to Banff is about 3 hrs, but plan on a whole day to get in the sites .... camping in Banff & Jasper is good, Motels are expensive in both Jasper & Banff.
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 06:50 AM
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This is on my bucket list of rides.
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 07:32 AM
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CR thanks for the info. Hopefully I can pick your brain a lot in the planning of this trip. Hopefully others will chime in with their thoughts.

Creston to Revelstoke is like 195 miles. Do you think you can easily make the ride from Kalispell to Revelstoke in a day with the ferries/border crossing or is this pushing it on time? About 363 miles. Allow on average an hour for each ferry and 30 minutes on the border?

I forgot to mention that I now travel with a CPAP so I need electricity at the campsite. Small inconvenience and extra baggage, but I sleep really good now. And hopefully I will not stop breathing anymore. Don't know how I will handle Sturgis in the future as I usually primitive camp there.
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 08:34 AM
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keep the battery charged
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 08:44 AM
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I can do Cranbrook to Revelstoke easily in a day, so Kalispel to Revelstoke should be fine. But the ferry’s can take time. (As can the border) .... Bikes are not first on and off anymore..... plan on two hours a ferry and you will be ok .... unless it is a Friday or a Monday on a long weekend. Do your best to do this section mid week. Less border, ferry and road traffic.

As you get closer, I can lay out some roads, help with motel & campground suggestions ...... Whistlers campground in Jasper is closed for a redo this year, so I would strongly suggest booking in one of the other ones early.

You are traveling the best way for the view through Jasper/Banff. Also, all of these roads have been covered in “The Journeys Of Darla”. .... might be an idea to put that on your winters reading list.
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 10:00 PM
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I believe I will decrease my mileage to Revelstoke to allow plenty of time for the border and ferries. CR, I am pretty sure parts of my route came from some of your comments I found while searching. After I ride from Jasper to Banff area, would it be worthwhile to take a day and ride back up towards Jasper and back for the scenery and sightseeing?
 
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Old 12-27-2018, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Grandslam View Post
I believe I will decrease my mileage to Revelstoke to allow plenty of time for the border and ferries. CR, I am pretty sure parts of my route came from some of your comments I found while searching. After I ride from Jasper to Banff area, would it be worthwhile to take a day and ride back up towards Jasper and back for the scenery and sightseeing?
If you want to spend a couple of days in the Parks this might be an idea. Stay in Jasper for two nights. The first night explore the Jasper town site and get a good feel for the place. Downtown Jasper is in my opinion much nicer than Banff. Then take a day and ride down to Malign lake. Plan on a couple of hours for this and if you really want to explore the lake, there is a boat cruise down there. After you get back to Jasper head over to the Gondola and take the ride up to the top of Whistlers Mountain. The views up there are spectacular. Once again poke around town. I will let you know the good places to eat when you get closer..... I try and get to Jasper every year if I can.

Then spend an entire day riding down to Banff. On the way down head over to 93a and ride up to Mt Edith Clavel. If you are up to it, there is a great short hike that takes you up to the lake. Its a good idea to take a pair of light hikers with you. It is not a strenuous walk and worth the effort. And the road up and back is spectacular. After you get back on 93 head to the Columbia Ice Fields. You can take the ride out onto the Glacier if you wish. I have never done it, but I think it is one of those things you do once.

If you are so inclined, there is a couple of Campgrounds up there, but remember, it is over 6,000 feet and you are right next to a Glacier, so it WILL get cold at night, you need a good sleeping bag to get through the night. If this is in the plan, there is a restaurant up at the Ice Fields display building.... but take money...

There will be lots of stops on the way to Banff..... Saskatchewan River Crossing is NOT worth one..... unless you want to pay an arm and a leg for a hot dog and a cup of coffee.... and a months rent for a tank of gas.... make sure you fuel up in Jasper first and I would suggest taking a lunch for the mid day meal.

If you want to spend a couple of days in Banff, take a big bucket of money, especially if you want to motel it. This is a great place to camp to save a couple of bucks. On the second day you are "In" Banff...... don't stay in Banff..... there is a great ride you can do that will eat up most of the day.... Head towards Golden, which is about an hour or so.... On the way, stop at Lake Louise and Field.... once in Golden (nothing to see here, move on), head south to Radium.... This is one of the most overlooked roads in BC, it takes about an hour to ride from Golden to Radium, but it is set right between the mountains in a great valley, with lots of nice high speed floaters, and almost none of it is in a straight line......go to the Hot Springs in Radium to rest your weary bones.... then head up and over the pass, again, a great road. This is in Kootenay National Park, which has almost no services. That will put you back on the Trans Canada and you can head south back into Banff. This rounder is about three hours of riding, but several hours if you want to stop and play

Remember, you are in a National park, so watch for Wildlife. Keep your eyes out and you will see Bear, Elk, Moose if you are lucky.... even wolf. I have more on one occasion seen Momma
bear and her twins

Now, I don't know what the plan is after that, but it is a natural ride to head down the East side of the Rocky Mountains to Waterton, and then back into Montana over Chief Mountain which will put you into St Marys, and then you can do the Road to the Sun. If you want to take that route, I will map out the road for you. You wont be going into Calgary, but down through Peter Lougheed park.
 
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  #9  
Old 12-28-2018, 07:46 AM
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I was in Jasper this past June/July . I wish I could help you with places to stay . The guy I went with lived in Hinton for a few years and knows the area very well . Banf is a very busy place so you might want to consider staying in Jasper , it's not as commercialized as Banff .

You have to stop at the Athabasca Glacier ( Columbia Icefields ? ) which is half way between Banff and Jasper . Take the bus down to the Catwalk .... You won't regret it !

If you have any questions about Jasper I'd be happy to help ..We spent 10 days there , and saw everything possible .

Enjoy your trip !!



That's a 900 ft drop underneath my feet !!!
 
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Old 12-28-2018, 07:55 AM
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Thanks CR for the awesome info. I plan to leave headed south on 40 to Longview and then on down to St. Mary. I have been to Glacier a couple of times and up to Waterton before. It was a very nice area. It took me about 30 minutes or so to get into Canada. There was a large group of bikes entering ahead of me and searched one or two of them. There were two guys in front of me that were in that group, but they had stopped to take a pic at the Welcome to Canada sign.

When I came back into the US, the guard asked how long I had been in CA. I told him long enough to eat an ice cream cone and drink a bottle of water. Then we talked a little as he was from Mississippi as well.

Anyone else have experiences in the area or thoughts to share?
 

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