The Canadian Rockies: a mythical mountain range home to some of the worlds’ most beautiful national parks like Banff, Yoho and Jasper. This 11-day trip checks off some of the most iconic treks in these respective parks. But your amazement will not be limited to the trails. The Icefield Parkway and the special accommodations we use on this trip are sure to leave you stupefied. With the help of our certified guide, come and explore as the first Swiss guides and Canadian voyageurs once did and venture deep into remote and pristine corners of these majestic mountains. Come and find your sense of place amongst these humbling giants. A great Canadian experience that pushes your limits and rewards you with unforgettable experiences and helps you to grow and appreciate this environment even more.
- The majestic beauty of the Rocky Mountains
- Hiking some of the National Park’s signature trails
- An exclusive itinerary through the less traveled parts of the Rockies
- A chance to experience the Icefield Parkway: one of the most breathtaking roads in the world!
- Unique mountain lodge and hut accommodations
- The diversity of the observable wildlife
- ACMG certified guide to assist you throughout your trip
Basic lodge - triple/quad occupancy
210km - 2h30
This morning you meet up with your certified guide and fellow travelers that will accompany you throughout this journey. We start heading west towards the foothills of the Canadian Rockies. Even before reaching our trailhead, we start seeing our first well know summits like the Three Sisters - Ha Ling Peak, Mount Lady Macdonald, Rundle or Cascade Mountain. Continuing deeper into Banff National Park to do our first hike on Stanley Glacier trail. After a safety briefing, we start this short walk through an old burn forest that will take us to an alpine meadow with great views of Stanley Glacier. We make our way to our hostel near Lake Louise where we’ll be able to prepare our meals in the communal kitchen and reminisce about the day’s adventures while planning the hikes to come. Meals: L
Basic lodge - triple/quad occupancy
30 km - 1h
Today, we head to a less explored and possibly even more stunning area of Banff NP. Starting on the shores of Moraine Lake in the Valley of the ten peaks we hike through the Larch valley to reach Sentinel Pass on the shoulder of Mt Temple. From here we can descend on the other side of the pass reaching Paradise Valley to complete a loop trail taking us back to Moraine Lake road or return the way we came. Either option we choose will be the right one, as beauty will be all around us. Returning to our hostel in time to watch the sun dipping low behind the mountains and prepare our dinner in great company. Meals: B, L, D
Basic lodge - triple/quad occupancy
8 km - 20 min
With the Victoria Glacier as a backdrop to its emerald green silence, Lake Louise is one of the most famed and visited landmarks in the Canadian Rockies. We head out early to beat the crowds and enjoy a serene moment on the shores of Lake Louise. After feasting our eyes and filling our camera rolls with this natural gem, we head off for the stunning Plaines of six glaciers trails. Skirting along the flank of Mt Whyte the trail is a steady 5,5 km climb that rewards you with exceptional views of Lake Louise and a quaint little tea house. An extra 1,5km will get you a unique vantage point on Abbott Pass and the Victoria Glacier. If we feel like something a little bit more challenging, we can opt to climb to the top of the Big Beehive before hiking down to Lake Agnes and back to Lake Louise. With 905m of vertical, this hike is sure to get those muscles burning but the culmination and summiting are well worth the efforts. Meals: B, L, D
50km - 50 min
Today, we keep pushing west to reach Yoho National Park. Yoho, a Cree expression meaning amazement and wonder. With its massive icefields, impressive waterfalls and jade green lakes Yoho is a special place with an incredible density of must-sees. We start our exploration of the park by visiting Emerald Lake, one of its more well-known attractions. After admiring the lake and perhaps enjoying a coffee on the Lodge’s terrasse, we head out to Hamilton lake for an 11km hike that will take us past Hamilton falls on the way to a beautiful alpine tarn. On the way back to our accommodation, we can stop at the natural bridge and at the spiral tunnel viewpoint to have an up-close look at this engineering marvel. Transfer back to Field for our first evening in this cozy little mountain town. Meals: B, L
35km - 45 min
This morning we tackle one of Yoho’s signature trek: the Iceline Trail. The trail starts next to the majestic Takakkaw Falls. At 373m they are the 2nd highest in Canada. We’ll take the time to admire them at leisure before, during and after our hike. According to how we’ll proceed we’ll also get to see Laughing Fall s and Twin Falls. Taking us up the east side of the President’s range this hike offers incredible views of the falls, of the Waputik Icefield and the Daly glacier to the east. After reaching a Plateau near Yoho pass, we have a few different options for the return route. We can choose to do the complete 20km loop through the little Yoho valley or shave off a few Kms cutting through Celeste Lake. We return to our accommodation to relax and gaze at the mountains we’ve just explored while enjoying our dinner. Meals: B, L
200km - 3h
Today we hit THE road. And when I say THE road, I am barely being biased here. The Icefield Parkway is known as being one of the most spectacular stretches of asphalt on earth. Started in 1931 as a depression relief project it was completed in 1940. Its 233kms meander through the Rocky Mountain passing by massive Icefields and over 100 glaciers. We will make as many stops as needed to experience all the amazing sights this drive has to offer. From the Num-Ti-Jah lodge on the shores of Bow Lake to the iconic Wolf profile of Peyto lake without forgetting the Crow’s foot, Saskatchewan and Athabasca glaciers. We will make sure you see all the secret spots including a short hike on Parker Ridge trail for a stunning view of Saskatchewan Glacier. We stop for the night near Sunwapta Falls for one last hotel night before heading to our wilderness lodge tomorrow. Meals: B, L, D
Wilderness hut - multi shared
190km - 2,5h
Continuing our way to Valemount, we stop in Jasper for some free time to explore the town and to do the necessary shopping to prepare for our upcoming 3-day excursion. Leaving Jasper, we stop on the way to check out Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Rockies. Reaching Valemount we finalize our packing and start hiking to reach our wilderness lodge for the next 2 nights. Our luggage and our food will be transported by helicopter to the hut. You will find hard to believe how stunning is the surroundings of our hut when you will travel along the road and during the hike to get there! Tucked away in a remote corner of the Rockies, the hut will be our basecamp for the next 2 days of exploration. Meals: B, L, D
Wilderness hut - multi shared
We will spend the next two days completely immersing ourselves in this incredible nature that surrounds the hut. Your certified guide will be able to adapt the next two days’ outings in accordance with the weather, the trail conditions, the presence of animals and the group’s strength. With charming meadows, challenging mountain passes and undisturbed alpine prairies this area is a unique playground that offers 360 degrees of bliss and it’s yours for the next 2days!!! Meals: B,L,D
420km - 5-6hrs
As we head back towards Valemount our hearts and minds linger a little not wanting to leave this alpine haven. It is always hard to leave such a place, the connections and realizations we’ve made will stay with us for a long time. Luckily the uplifting beauty of the Icefield Parkways taking us back to Banff will help to mend or bleeding hearts. Arrive in Banff in the late afternoon just in time for some free time in town before enjoying a farewell dinner with your crew. Meals: B, L
125km - 1,5hrs
After the last breakfast, you might have time to explore Banff before we make our way back to Calgary for the return flights or post-tour accommodations. Meals: B
Dates & pricesPrivatize this trip write to us
- 3 nights in basic lodge, 4 nights in hotel/lodge and 3 nights in wilderness hut
- 11 breakfasts, 11 picnics and 6 dinners
- Transfers by minibus during the trip
- Helicopter transfer for luggage and food to the wilderness hut
- Certified ACMG guide
- Cooking equipment, first aid kit and Sat phone
- Group of 6 to 10 travelers
- Pre and post nights hotel in Calgary (if required)
- Non included meals: breakfast D1, lunch D11 and 4 dinners
- Transportation to and from Calgary
- Travel and medical insurance
- Guide tips
- Taxe: GST (5%)
Our cancellation policy has been modified and no cancellation will be applied if when made at least 60 days before the trip. For obvious reasons linked to the COVID-19 pandemic 60 days and more before departure, Windigo Aventure reserves the right to modify all or part of the trip for similar or equivalent services (hotels, outfitters, lodges or hostels with the same inclusive activities on site or nearby).
Information about your trip
The group will have to adapt to the weather conditions sometimes requiring the cancellation or modification of one or more days of activities. Our guide will make the decisions on-site to ensure the safety of the group.
Hikes are mainly mountainous with a few near lakes. This trip consists of a series of hikes to the peaks of the Canadian Rockies. A variety of terrain is explored, from forest trails to scrambles over rocky ridges. There are 3 nights to spend in a backcountry lodge where you will have to carry your sleeping bag and your personal effects on the way down to Valemount (on the way up a helicopter will drop all the materiel).
Physical level #
We suggest you have a healthy lifestyle and are in good physical shape to join this trip. You should be able to walk for 4 to 9 hours with an average of 400 to 950m elevation gain each day. The hikes are at varying altitudes, from about 1000 to 2650m.
For days when we visit the parks, lunches are included and will generally be in the form of picnics. All cooking equipment and cutlery are provided by us. Your help will be appreciated in the preparation of meals. Some dinners are not included and are at your own expense. Your guide will propose a restaurant for nights where the meal is not included. Plan on about 18-25$ CAD for lunch and 30$-45$ CAD for dinner (tips and alcohol not included in prices).
Hut: There is a large semi-divided room on one side with two double beds and the other with a long sleeping platform and futon.
Hotel: Double room basis
Basic Lodge: 4 beds per dormitory, sink inside room & shared bathroom
Pre & post nights
You will need to book a pre-night stay in a hotel downtown Calgary to attend the meeting with your guide on the morning of Day 1. We can organize the reservations of hotels at the beginning or the end of your trip.
From the Calgary airport, you may hop on a hotel shuttle, stopping at various hotels including the Ramada Downtown. The cost is 15$CAD/person. To be paid locally. You may also take a taxi (approximate cost: 50$ CAD)
One ACMG Hiking certified driver-guide who knows the area well will lead the tour. Please note that it is expected of you to actively participate in the daily chores, like the preparation of picnics, the loading and unloading of the minibus and to participate in the activities.
Expectations & Group philosophy
Groups are comprised of people from various parts of the world, with different nationalities and backgrounds. The group size varies between 6 and 10 people.
We also insist on the voluntary commitment of people to group tasks, such as helping with carrying out picnics preparation, transporting collective equipment when returning from the hut, loading the minibus, etc.
For all transfers, we use a 15 seat minibus. The luggage will be transported inside the minibus or inside an enclosed cargo trailer (from 8 travelers).
Major credit cards (Visa & Mastercard) are accepted almost everywhere. You can use these to pay for purchases or withdraw money in US Dollars from the many ATMs. You can also exchange your native currency (cash) into CAD dollars upon arrival.
In Canada, service is never included in the price. In bars, restaurants, and wherever service is provided, it is expected that you leave a gratuity between 15 and 20% of the total bill amount. Be aware that many employees within the service industry count on tips as their main remuneration and it is be frowned upon to leave an insufficient amount or no tip at all. Even when paying by credit card, you can specify the amount of tip you want to leave. It is also customary to give a tip to the tour guide at the end of a trip. The recommended amount by the industry is around 6-10$/person/day.