"The Most Scenic Road in North America"
This is one of the most spectacular cycle tours in the world. The Icefield Parkway passes through a vast wilderness of pristine mountain lakes, ancient glaciers, and broad sweeping valleys. What better way to see all this than by bike!
On this trip we'll cycle from Castle Mountain up to Jasper. If we're fortunate, the weather at this time of year will be just right for cycling and the summer traffic will be mild. Each night we'll stay in a different hostel and share good food, potluck style.
Distance: 275 km
Elevation Gain: lots!
Length: 6 days (5 days cycling + 1 day setting up car shuttle)
Day by Day
Day 0 (Aug 24) - Today we shuttle a vehicle up to Jasper then return to Castle Mountain where we'll begin our tour tomorrow. We'll spend the evening enjoying a warm fire and good conversation at HI Castle Mountain.
Day 1 (Aug 25) - Castle Mountain to Lake Louise - about 31 km
Enjoy the peaceful forested road as we cycle along the Bow Valley Parkway to Lake Louise. A nice peaceful way to start out.
Day 2 (Aug 26) - Lake Louise to Mosquito Creek - about 26 km
Today we really get started! Our first glimpses of the Icefield Parkway. Even if you've been here many times before in a car, on a bike it will be like your very first.
Day 3 (Aug 27) - Mosquito Creek to Rampart Creek - about 65 km
We start the day by conquering the mighty Bow Pass then sail down to the Saskatchewan River Crossing. We spend the night at HI Rampart Creek, famous for having Canada's best hostel sauna.
Day 4 (Aug 28) - Rampart Creek to Beauty Creek - about 57 km
Epic day today! We climb more than 500 m up Sunwapta Pass in not much more than 10 km. That's hard work! But we'll be well rewarded with stellar views all the way down to Beauty Creek.
Day 5 (Aug 29) - Beauty Creek to HI Maligne Canyon - about 100 km
We're rewarded for all our hard work over the last few days with a mostly downhill ride into Jasper, passing by the thundering Athabasca Falls.
See a map of the parkway here:
The first day of this trip we'll leave our bikes at HI Castle Mountain then drive to Jasper, stopping at hostels along the way to drop off food. This will lighten our loads and make the cycling more fun. When we get to Jasper we'll leave a car and return to Castle Mountain where our bikes will be waiting for us to start the journey.
Not Just Cycling But Great Food Too
What's a cycle tour without good food? Each night we'll cook up good grub at our hostel and enjoy it together. Potluck style or each person is master chef for a night, it's guaranteed to be delicious after a full day of cycling and great views.
Read a blog about this adventure by an avid cyclist here and here.
The cost will be approximately $24/person/night ($120 total) for HI members (or perhaps less if we get a group discount).
When you sign up for this event you'll receive an email with paypal information within a few days. Please pay within 3 days of receiving it.
Cancellations: If you decide to cancel, you'll receive a refund only if someone else joins to replace you (so only sign up for this if you're pretty sure you want to go).
We will have a brief pre-trip meeting to go over the itinerary, arrange a car pool, and to make sure everyone has all the clothing and equipment they need to make this a fun and safe adventure.
But wait, there's more!
This is part one of a two part trip. See the Jasper Skyline trip for the second part. You can do just one part, but why not have even more fun and join us for a great hike since you'll already be in Jasper at the end of this cycle tour.