Category: Alberta

Alberta Trails

More and more jusrisdictions are putting trail maps up on the Web. Alberta, flush with cash, has just started a trail mapping project. They’ve done parts of NE Alberta as a trial. The section of the Trans Canada trail in that area looks intriguing – the 300km Iron Horse trail.

Travel Alberta has picked up on the project, and lists it on their site as well. Let’s hope they call the project a success and complete the entire province soon.

Driving tours in western Canada

GyPSyCanada’s highways are great fun to drive, but you tend to be behind the wheel many hours at the time. You just whizz by towns and sites along the way, often wondering what’s the story behind the sights. No longer – thanks to GyPSy, an innovative GPS-based audio guide. Install the GPS-enabled device in your car, attach it to a small FM receiver, and start driving. Every few minutes, you get a short commentary about some interesting fact or historical figure. And if there is not much to say about the trees along the way, you may get some interesting facts about Canada as a whole. It’s great not only for first-time visitors, but also for locals. Currently they offer commentaries along the main highways of BC and Alberta, as well as city tours of the main cities, in English, French and German. They’re hoping to add additional routes and languages. Great adaptation of GPS technology.

Green travel

Today is Blog action day – bloggers are asked to post something about the environment. For tourism in Canada that’s not too hard. I just had to put together a media itinerary around eco lodges in Canada, and found some great environmentally friendly lodges in Alberta/BC. ONe of my favourites is Purcell Mountain Lodge. It is true that one has to fly in by chopper, but once there, there are endless alpine meadows to hike in.

Shadow Lake lodge in Banff NP is even better, you hike or snowshoe in, and stay in simple, historic cabins.  Lake O’Hara lodge ain’t bad either.

Of course, if you really want to rough it eco-style,  then glamping in Clayquot Resort is the ticket.

Mountain High

Earlier this year, Condé Nast Traveler reviewed high-end north American mountain lodges. The Rockies came off well, with Heather Mountain Lodge / Great Canadian Heli-Skiing and Skoki Lodge. Actually, we have a world-wide reputation for great backcountry lodges, so it shouldn’t be a surprise.

In a related alpine article, rating ski resorts in the US, Europe, and Canada, Whistler made the cut.

Going Underground in the Rockies

I had a day in between meetings in Calgary and Banff, so what better way to spend it than going underground in Canmore? My friend Chas Yonge runs the excellent Wild Cave Tours in Canmore. We spent about 4 hours in the Rat’s Nest Cave, just outside of town. His Adventure tour comes highly recommended. The 20m rappel is a blast,  and the laundry chute is out of this world. Imagine yourself 100m underground, squeezing through a narrow tube, head-first at a 45 degree angle, and after a semi-somersault on your belly through another tiny tunnel. Not for the faint-of-heart or the claustrophobic. The tour leads toa large chamber and grotto with small underground pools.

Their multi-day Alpine Cave adventure sounds rather amazing as well.

Dogsledding in the Rockies

Dogsledding is not only for the professionals racing in the Yukon Quest – why not try it yourself? The folks at Cold Fire Creek Dog Sledding in Jasper ofer some fun dogsledding tours, from a quick 1 hour trip to a half day or even a moonlight tour.