Are you like me? Do you like to mix up your modes of travel? I personally love history, but I also love to explore. Sitting around and doing nothing is not my idea of fun. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I like to thoroughly relax and soak up down time, but even when I do that, I enjoy a mix of adventure. I also love nature and beauty – breathtaking beauty. So where would I travel to indulge in that mixture of adventure, history and beauty? How about a trip to the Canadian Rockies?
Begin Your Voyage with a Travel Back in Time
For over a century, spanning the mid-nineteenth century well into the 20th century, passenger train travel was the luxury mode of travel for royal visitors, political and industry leaders and the well-to-do in the US and Canada. Many people today have only read about those days, but few have traveled back in time to experience train travel.
Trans-Canada Travel by Train
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Author Martin Jeszke commented in his article entitled, “Transcontinental Train Travel Across Canada“:
“Sometime in the near future make the time and effort to Travel Transcontinental by Train across Canada. It is one of the most memorable and truly spectacular journeys in the world.”
Some years ago I had the opportunity to do just that. An elderly family friend, who was like a grandfather to me, invited my family and me to join him on a luxury cross-Canada train trip to Banff in the Canadian Rockies. The trip took about seven days each way during which we viewed the vast and varied terrain of Canada. We were fortunate to have staterooms and I can say that everyone should experience the comfort of being rocked to sleep each night only to awaken in the morning to a totally new landscape. The dining (I can’t call it eating, it was true dining) in the dining car was a journey in itself – a journey into the elegant past. I will also cherish the memory of sitting in the observation car, watching majestic streaks of lightning as the train entered the foothills of the Rockies.
A Travel Destination into Adventure
Photo Courtesy of blypix.com
Banff National Park is known as Canada’s alpine adventure. As your travel by train from the past comes to an end in Banff, you will begin your voyage into dazzling peaks, lush mountain meadows, emerald lakes, virgin forest, towering waterfalls and wildlife galore.
If you decide to rent a car and travel north up the Icefield Parkway, you will pass both breathtaking Lake Louise and picturesque Moraine Lake that’s surrounded by the Valley of the Ten Peaks. Further north, you will come to the Columbia Icefield. In summer, you can take a “snowcoach” ride out onto the glacier, get out of the bus and walk around. In winter, the Columbia Icefield is a major destination for ski mountaineering.
North of the Icefield is the town of Jasper. Jasper National Park was established in 1907 and is a lot more rustic than Banff. But, if you want real adventure, not just sightseeing, that is found in abundance here too.
Adventure in the Canadian Rockies Is Year Round
Here is a partial list of the kinds of adventures you will find (both summer and winter) as you travel around the Canadian Rockies:
Assorted Water and Boating Activities
Mountaineering and Climbing
Cross Country Skiing
And these lists are only partial.
If you like the idea of a bird’s eye view, and more modern travel, you can take a helicopter ride over mountainous terrain, or a gondola ride up to the top of a mountain peak. Your travel and adventure options are endless in this piece of heaven on earth.
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