Location: Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan to Banff, Alberta to Jasper, Alberta
Lodging: Two Jack Campground and Jasper Gates
Mileage: 687 miles
This part of the trip was the stretch where we passed through Banff and Jasper National Parks in Alberta, and it was truly something to see. Cody and I were extremely excited about this portion of the trip because we'd skipped it last time in order to save a day of driving. This time we knew that we didn't want to miss it, so we set aside the time. As we left Moose Jaw, the hills slowly became bigger, and as we hit Calgary the huge mountains of the national park were looming in the not-so-distance.
The first night that we arrived in Banff National Park, we decided to camp. Originally, we had reservations, but they were double booked, which we found out on arrival. This kicked us out into one of the "overflow" campgrounds. Much as I would have liked to have been in an established camp with fire pits and such, I actually found the overflow area to be pretty nice. It had bathrooms and a ton of space. (However, I don't recommend this as a plan, as the rangers were even turning people away from overflow because it was so busy.)
After one of the most scenic days ever, we headed out of the park and towards the little town of Hinton, Alberta. Before calling it a night though we first stopped in Jasper (the town) for some dinner and ended up falling in love with it. It reminded us both of the time we drove through the Colorado ski towns (Vail, Aspen, etc). We would totally go back to Jasper in the future, it'd be a great place to spend a long weekend. Our busy and beautiful day wrapped up with a stop at one of my favorite hotels of the trip - Jasper Gates Resort. It was a pretty and modern log cabin complex right inside the park gates.
All in all, I'd recommend the trek through Banff and Jasper if you are looking for a spectacular and unique vacation. We would certainly do it again in the future, and even maybe just plan a flight into Jasper to rent an RV. Lots of options in this mountainous destination!
Stay tuned for the next installment of our moving adventures!
Your turn...What is your favorite State or National Park?
Currently listening to...As We Ran - The National Parks