Icefields Parkway: The most beautiful journey in the world

The journey through Banff Countrywide Park and Jasper National Park, linking Lake Louise and Jasper, is 1 of the most attractive in the environment. The Icefields Parkway, as it is known, is 233 kilometres of soaring mountain peaks, expansive icefields and infinite valleys.

To drive it non-end would choose just below a few hrs. Even so, this is not a road to be consumed but an adventure to knowledge. Move historic glaciers, impressive waterfalls, turquoise lakes and spectacular forests as you shift further into the distant wilderness. It will experience like you’ve left every little thing guiding with no cellphone reception and only a lonely fuel station alongside the way.

Natural magnificence will encapsulate you like never right before, so take it sluggish, cease at the viewpoints, dangle on to your digicam and soak up the splendour of the Canadian Rockies.

Green trees with a turquoise lake and mountains on a sunny day

Lake Louise

We’d recommend starting up this vacation just after a couple of times of exploring the pure mountain landscape that is Lake Louise. Renowned for its turquoise lakes, towering mountain peaks, grand chateau and impressive climbing and snowboarding, it’s a location that will just take your breath absent. The sights and adventures are jaw-dropping and you have to experience them to think it.

It would be wise to start the journey with a stuffed tank, a great deal of treats or a picnic basket, and a map of the place. With only one particular gasoline station alongside the way and couple of facilities, it is greatest to be geared up.

Clear turquoise lake, with a cottage and mountains in the background

Bow Lake

The initially end after Lake Louise is conveniently obvious as it lines the Icefields Parkway. You can either prevent along the street or just take the switch-off to the parking place. Get pleasure from the breathtaking views and stunning colour of the drinking water.

Peyto Lake and Bow Summit

Peyto Lake is one particular of the most common and photographed spots along the Icefields Parkway. The stunning blue colour of the h2o is from the Peyto Glacier earlier mentioned the lake and component of the Wapta Icefield. The very best viewpoint for the lake is from Bow Summit at 2088 metres higher than sea amount. It is the highest level on the Icefields Parkway. The perspective is so breathtaking you are going to sense as if you are stepping into a postcard.

Saskatchewan River Crossing

The Saskatchewan River Crossing is 3 rivers that satisfy the North Saskatchewan, the Howse and the Mistaya. It was named “The Crossing” when fur traders and travellers utilised this issue to cross the North Saskatchewan river on their way to British Columbia. The importance of The Crossing is that it is the setting up position for excursions in the Columbia Icefields region and it is also the only spot to use restrooms, the gas station and dining places together the route.

Weeping Wall

As the identify indicates, the mountain appears like it is crying mainly because a lot of very small waterfalls cascade off the cliffs building this illusion. The principal waterfall is even termed the Teardrop. This is a shortstop and can be seen from the side of the highway. The best time to see the Weeping Wall is when it is frozen through the winter months. The entire cliff deal with steadily freezes into a lovely blue wall of ice.

A mountain face with water cascading down

Big Hill and Big Bend

It will be apparent to you when you get there at Large Hill and Significant Bend. At Large Hill, the descending road clings to the wall of a mountain and offers an expansive watch of the valley, the river, and all the capabilities that make the Icefields Parkway the most scenic travel in the environment. The Big Bend is the popular hairpin turn that wraps in a circle below towering peaks. Keep driving and enjoy the beautiful perspective.

Road winding through a high cliff face

Parker Ridge

This is the longest prevent as a result of the Icefields Parkway. In full, it is a five-kilometre hike. If you’re not up for a hike, you can constantly skip it and continue on your way. The Parker Ridge is a will have to-do nevertheless for those who want a bit of elevation to consider in a multitude of mountain ranges and the Saskatchewan Glacier. A major reward is that you can uncover a great location alongside the way for a picnic lunch.

Columbia Icefield

These fields of ice that lie between Banff Nationwide Park and Jasper National park are the major south of the Arctic Circle. They are 325 sq. kilometres in region, up to 365 metres in depth and acquire up to seven metres of snowfall for every 12 months. In the course of summer you can vacation on the glacier in “snow-coaches” or you can watch them from the roadside parking large amount.

White snow covered mountain ranges

Glacier Sky Walk

Picture standing on a glass-floored observation system 280 meters earlier mentioned the Sunwapta Valley. This special practical experience opened in May perhaps 2014 and provides you panoramic sights of the valley. If heights are not your point then you can still watch the Sunwapta Valley from a lookout stage nearby.

Athabasca Falls

You do not want to skip the Athabasca Glacier. One particular of the 6 principal ‘toes’ of the Columbia Icefield, it’s the most frequented glacier in North America – and it is substantial. You can see it from the highway, but it’s value it to soar on the Athabasca Glacier path to get virtually proper to its edge. If you want to hike on to the glacier you are going to have to have to book a tour with a right guide for safety.

Waterfalls with a mountain in the background


Ranging more than 11 000 sq. kilometres, Jasper is the major national park in the Canadian Rockies. Acknowledged for its large wilderness, majestic peaks, plentiful wildlife and outstanding purely natural splendor, site visitors from all more than Canada and about the world travel here to encounter this quite special place.

The most effective situations to take a look at Jasper Nationwide Park are March through Might and September by November. The temperatures will be chillier but it is a modest price tag to pay for a quieter and significantly less crowded park.

Blue lake, green trees and white snow capped mountain peaks

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Winter season wonderland

No generate is at any time the exact same on the Icefields and that is specifically true when the most gorgeous journey in the globe turns into a winter wonderland. All through November and March, mind-boggling tranquillity settles in on the Icefields Parkway as it transforms into a position of solitude and awe. Roadside stops reveal ancient glaciers and cascading waterfalls. Snow-lined trails tempt you to pull in excess of and set on snowshoes or skis for a winter season journey.

Greatest photographs

Every single instant spent on the Icefields Parkway offers breathtaking prospects to seize the fantastic photograph. Down below are some very suggested pictures places.

Lake Moraine
Peyto Lake
Waterfowl Lakes
Bridal Veil Falls
Parkers Ridge
The Columbia Icefield
Sunwapta Falls

Blue lake surrounded by mountains

The Icefields Parkway is far more than a generate, it is the most wonderful journey in the globe and it warrants discovery. Acquire your time, soak up the sheer expanse of nature and immerse yourself in the practical experience.

Andrew Morten is the Founder of Small The usa. Small The us generates bespoke, personalized excursions to the United States and Canada.

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