5 cool activities at Canada’s national parks
Story by Lori McNulty
1. Poles fit for a prince
Cross-country skiing: Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Alberta
Lake Louise is for lovers — ski lovers, that is. You can check out tree-lined cross-country trails or fly downhill in waist-deep powder, all under gorgeous blue skies. And if you’re up for a more rustic adventure, try the famous Skoki Lodge, where Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, Catherine, visited in the summer.
TIP: Bring a camera to take great snaps of deer and elk as you shush by on your Nordic skis.
2. Get seriously soaked
Hot springs: Radium Hot Springs, Kootenay National Park, Alberta
You can get me into hot springs at any time of year but on cool, crisp winter days, just try to get me out. Surrounded by snow-covered trees and the icy Mount Rundle, I love to wade shoulder-deep into the soothing mineral-rich waters of Radium Hot Springs and just smile.
TIP: For more warmth, try Banff Upper Hot Springs in Banff National Park.
3. Mush ado about winter
Dog sledding: Kluane National Park and Reserve, Yukon
Here’s one for the bucket list. A chance to mush a team of gorgeous huskies through Kluane National Park and Reserve. Contact a local dog-sled tour operator for itineraries, or try Tourism Yukon (867-667-5340).
TIP: Canada’s highest mountain, Mount Logan (5,959 metres; 19,545 feet), is located within the park.
4. Cold Climb
If you were born with a silver pick-axe in your hands, here’s news. Some 1,000 waterfalls exist through the Canadian Rockies, making it one of the world’s premier waterfall ice-climbing destinations. Experienced climbers have easy access and incredible options.
TIP: Massey’s and Pilsner Pillar are classic climbs near the village of Field in Yoho National Park.
5. Plan a below-zero family boil-up
Winter picnicking: Waterton Lakes National Park, Alberta
Bundle up the family and head out for a picnic along the lake, stopping at one of the park’s enclosed camp kitchens. Cook lunch over a wood stove, seasoned with a dose of the stunning Rocky Mountains.
TIP: Snowshoe up and over the Akamina Pass and have a picnic on the continental divide.
Click here for five more activities to put the wonder back in winter.