TWOLOST: Banff/Jasper, April 2008
My wife and I just got back from a great five day trip up-and-into Banff/Jasper National Park in Alberta Canada. We planned one day each for travel to-and-from the Seattle, WA area up to Banff/Canmore area (roughly 650 miles each way). From our home base in Canmore, we ventured out each of our three remaining 'open' days.
On the first open day we traveled along the Smith Dorian Spray Trail (a forty mile well maintained gravel road just outside of Canmore). We encountered blizzard like conditions that... at times, dumped several inches of new snow per hour. It was Friday... and we had the place to ourselves.
On the second open day, we traveled from Canmore up through the Icefields Parkway in the early morning, ate a late lunch in Jasper and then headed back to our home base in Canmore (reverse route) by late evening. Weather was perfect. Freezing temps in the morning, mid 60's (F) by late afternoon, not a cloud in the sky all day. As a best guess, we encountered less than two dozen vehicles along the Parkway itself.
On the third open day, we took several short trips including some travel along the Bow Valley Parkway (Hwy 1A). This was Sunday... and by all appearances - was the first real 'mild' weekend day that winter relinquished its icy grip on the area, we encountered significantly more people out playing (hikers, bicyclists, motorcyclists, convertibles, etc...). We took the opportunity to do much less driving and focused more on enjoying a few small parks instead.
From an operations stand-point, we had no SMB trouble whatsoever.