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31st Aug - 6 Sept 2019

7 days/Canada /
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Overview

This 5-day trek with Weldmar Hospicecare is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in some of the finest scenery of the Canadian Rockies, with spectacular treks in Kootenay, Banff and Yoho National Parks. Discovering the jagged mountain peaks, glaciers, forests and lakes which make this area so breath-taking, we take on some of the finest trek trails in this part of Canada.

  • 25oC high, 5oC low
  • 10-25 people per group
  • First Aid trained staff

A Moderate to Challenging trip. Walking up to 8 hours a day for 5 consecutive days over varied terrain with some steep ascents. Camping overnight.

Temperatures tend to range from approx. 30°C to 40°C during the day, and drop to around 0°C at night however you must be prepared for variations to this which are out of our control.

Weather during the trek will be dry but there may be some strong winds. Rain, although very rare, is not impossible.

Please note: the temperatures and conditions above are historically accurate for this time of year but climate change can impact the seasons so you may experience uncharacteristic conditions during the trip which are out of our control. Should this happen the guide will assess the situation and make decisions to ensure the best enjoyment and ultimately safety of the group as a whole.

To get to and from the desert requires long drives (approx. 9 hours including breaks) along winding mountain roads which offer stunning views of the snow-capped peaks and lush valleys. If you suffer from motion sickness you are advised to bring your usual anti-nausea medication with you. Regular stops are taken.

Each day’s trek will vary in duration but on average you will trek for 5-8 hours per day, covering approximately 15-20km, with a long break at lunchtime when you will spend a few hours relaxing through the heat of the day in the desert environment.

During the trek you will sleep in tents (two to a tent) which are provided, or if the weather is good you can sleep outside under the stars (recommended!). Foam sleeping mats are provided but you will need to bring a sleeping bag.

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Itinerary

Day 1: London – Banff

Depart the UK on a flight to Calgary, then transfer to the hostel in the town of Canmore (approx. 1.5 hours drive) which is situated near the boundaries of Banff, Yoho and Kootenay National Parks, where our challenge awaits. We enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant this evening and stay at a local hostel for the night. Overnight: Hostel

Day 2: Mt. Yamnuska

After breakfast we set off for a short drive (approx. 30 mins) to the start of today’s trek, following the Yamnuska hike trail, which traverses the outlying ridge of Mt. Yamnuska, the easternmost mountain in the Bow Valley. The trail offers spectacular views of the prairies, stretching all the way to the city of Calgary. We set up camp for the next two nights at the Johnston Canyon Campground, Banff National Park (approx. 1.5 hours drive). Trekking: 7 km, 4 hrs., 435m elev. gain. Overnight: Campsite

Day 3: Stanley Glacier

Today’s trek takes us into Kootenay National Park, where ancient fossils, waterfalls, and blue glaciers await us. We will discover the forces that built mountains, and trek through an area severely burnt by forest fires from 1968 and 2003. Although this may sound unappealing, wild flowers now thrive in this area and reforestation has taken place. Later in the trek we reach the valley’s boulder fields where we can look for fossils (but you can’t take any home!) before returning for a second night at the campsite (approx. 20 mins. drive). Trekking: 13 km, 5-6 hrs., 500m elev. gain. Overnight: Campsite

Day 4: Paradise Valley / Sentinel Pass

Today we trek within Banff National Park where we enjoy one of the most popular hikes in the Rockies. We drive (approx. 1 hour) to the start of our trek, in the Larch Valley. The trail takes us to the summit of Sentinel Pass and then over the other side into aptly named Paradise Valley, where you can enjoy stunning views. The trail then passes the beautiful turquoise waters of Lake Annette, ideal for an afternoon rest stop, before ending back at the Moraine Lake access road, from where we head to our second campsite at Lake Louise (approx. 20 mins. drive). Trekking: 19 km, 6-8 hrs. 730m elev. gain. Overnight: Campsite

Day 5: Lake Louise Highline Circuit

It is just a short journey (approx. 15 minutes drive) to the start of today’s spectacular trek challenge. The Lake Louise Highline combines a number of trails to form a great circuit of the Plain of Six Glaciers, including the “Deathtrap Couloir” viewpoint. This is a long day of trekking but is arguably the best trek in Banff National Park, and well worth the effort for spectacular views along the way and especially the Plain of Six Glaciers. Although the lower areas of the trek attract many visitors, the farther reaches will be quieter, with views that reward those who make the effort! We return to Lake Louise Campsite this evening for dinner and overnight. Trekking: 16 km, 7 hrs. 800m elev. gain. Overnight: Campsite

Day 6: Iceline Trail

After breakfast we set off for the start of today’s trek (approx. 30 mins drive). Yoho National Park is the setting for today’s breath-taking trek, and we certainly finish on a high with what is possibly one of the most spectacular hikes in the Rockies. The Iceline Trail boasts close-up views of numerous glaciers, one of the highest waterfalls in Canada (Takakkaw Falls), mountain peaks and much more! It’s a tough full day of trekking, but a fitting finale to our Rockies Challenge! We continue to Banff (approx. 1 hour drive) for a final night in a hotel and a farewell dinner this evening at a local restaurant. Trekking: 21 km, 8 hrs., 730m elev. gain. Overnight: Hotel

Day 7: Banff – Calgary – UK

Depending on flight schedules there may be some free time in Banff, before we transfer to the airport (approx. 1.5 hours drive) for your flight home which, depending on flight schedules, may arrive in London the following day.

Note: The day-to-day program is subject to flight schedules, weather, general conditions and the progress of the group. While we do not anticipate any changes to the itinerary, we cannot be held responsible for changes made due to unexpected circumstances. Ultimately the safety and health of the group takes priority in all circumstances.

Costs & How to pay

Registration fee: £350
Sponsorship: £3950

Sponsorship

This option is for those who wish to raise sponsorship to cover both the costs of the trip (flights, accommodation, food, guides etc.) and a donation to their chosen charity. There is a minimum sponsorship amount for each tour that you are required to raise in order to participate.

  • There is a registration fee payable at the time of booking.
  • The minimum sponsorship must be paid to the charity 12 weeks prior to departure.
  • The amount the charity receives is at least 50% of the minimum sponsorship total.

Self-Funded

This option is for those who choose to pay the tour costs (flights, accommodation, food, guides etc.) themselves. There is no sponsorship required although if you wish to raise sponsorship for a charity you are welcome to do so.

  • A registration fee is payable at the time of booking.
  • Tour cost balance is payable to Different Travel eight weeks prior to departure.

What's included

  • Return flights from the UK
  • Airport taxes and charges
  • Local transfers and transport in Canada
  • 1 hotel, 1 hostel and camping on the trek
  • Trek permits
  • Local guides and support crew
  • Different Travel UK tour manager
  • All meals as per itinerary

What's not included

  • Any necessary vaccinations
  • Travel insurance
  • Canada eTA
  • Spending money (tips, drinks, souvenirs)
  • Transport to/from UK airports
  • Personal trek kit

Got a Question?

If you’ve a question about this challenge that you can’t find the answer to within the given information then complete this quick form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

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