If you are working in the Rockies or are planning to go there be sure to check out this top 5 things to do.
- Banff Gondola
Take the eight minute gondola ride up to the top op Sulphur Mountain to enjoy a 360° view of Banff and its surrounding peaks, Lake Minnewanka, and the Bow Valley stretching from east to west. At the top of the mountain there are several scenic hiking trails you can do. You can also encounter the local wildlife, including bighorn sheep, squirrels, marmots and many more. For only $25 you can go up and down the mountain. Looking to save a few bucks? You can also hike up the mountain. It’s a 5.5 km strenuous walk that will take you about 2-5 hours but I am willing to bet you enjoy the view so much more when you hiked up the mountain
2. Sunshine Meadows
The Sunshine Meadows are known as the most stunning alpine setting in the Canadian Rockies. At 2220 m high, the meadows straddle the Continental Divide and the boundary between Alberta and British Columbia. Surrounded by some of the Rockies’ highest peaks, the unobstructed views are beyond compare. Wildlife around in the meadows, and the brilliance of the summer flowers and autumn larches guarantees spectacular scenery on every visit.
Spend your day on top of the world and away from the crowds at Sunshine Meadows. Mt. Assiniboine, “the Matterhorn of the Canadian Rockies”, and Banff National Park’s highest peak, can be your backdrop! A network of gentle trails wind their way through the Meadows and offer a range of walking for all abilities; from easy one and two hour strolls, to challenging full day hikes to Quartz Ridge, Healy Pass, or beyond.
3. Tunnel mountain and Hoodoos
One of Banff national park oldest trails Tunnel Mountain is a still one of the most beautiful walks in the area. It takes about 2-3 hours to hike and it is a 4.3 km (2.7 miles) round trip. It is the smallest peak in the Rockies to be called a mountain. Standing guard around the top of the mountain are hoodoos. People looking to do this track often have two questions:
- What are hoodoos? They are giant freestanding pillars several meters tall that are made of silt, gravel and rocks cemented together by dissolved limestone. That was the technical answer, to make it so that everyone understands here is a picture.
- Where is the tunnel? That is the other frequently asked picture. Because the trail is called Tunnel Mountain people are wondering were the tunnel is. Well… there is no tunnel! So why did they call it tunnel mountain? That’s because of a proposal from the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1882. They wanted to blast a half mile tunnel through the hillside, but luckily they quickly decided that this was to expensive and that it would be easier to go around.
4. Lake Minnewanka
It’s the largest lake in Banff National Park at 24 km (15 miles) long and 142 m (466 ft.) deep. Only scuba divers can view the remnants of a small town called Minnewanka Landing, after a dam was built in 1941 causing the lake to rise by 30 m. But you can walk along the lakeside trail or sing up for the interpretive boat tour to learn about the history, native folk lore and geology.
5. Vermillion Lakes
This is the perfect place for a picnic lunch on the dock, with stunning views o Mount Rundle and Sulphur Mountain.There are three lakes along this road, where bald eagles nest in trees, Canadian geese breed in the marshlands and tundra swans stop by during each spring and fall migration. A natural hot springs bubbles into
the third lake. You’ll hear the mournful whistle of the Canadian Pacific Rail trains as the cross the tracks at the far side of the lakes, a sound which has echoed through the Bow Valley for more than 100 years.
If you are a big fan of nature and love to go on hikes, the Rockies are the best designation for you.
There is so much to do and see that even if you were to live there your whole life you won’t get to see everything. But this top 5 gives you a start.
Are you in the area at the moment or have been to the Rockies and would like to add an something to our top 5? Let us know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org