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Archive for the ‘things-to-remember’ Category

Canada Day Weekend 2013 – Banff National Park

28 Jun

Celebrate Canada Day Weekend in the beautiful natural surroundings of Banff National Park.

Experience all the fun and festivities that Banff National Park has to offer with jam-packed schedules including the ever popular Canada Day parades, live entertainment, family activities, fireworks, and much more!

Entry to the national park on Canada Day is FREE to all visitors.

June 30

Banff ‘hearts’ Canmore Benefit for the Bow Valley

Brewster Travel Canada, in partnership with Discover Banff Tours, the Rimrock Resort Hotel and several local businesses, will be hosting a flood relief benefit at the Banff Gondola.

The fundraising event will run between 4-7 pm and include a variety of exciting activities, musical entertainment, a silent auction and refreshments. In addition, Brewster Travel Canada will also be offering rides on the Banff Gondola by donation in lieu of the normal ticket fee to all residents of the Bow Valley.

Fundraising Concert at the Shaw Ampitheatre

The Banff Centre presents “Classified with Zeus The Eerie Green and Elk Run and Riot” and will be collecting and matching donations for Bow Valley Flood Relief.  Doors open at 4pm.  Tickets available from The Banff Centre.


July 1, Banff

Town of Banff
8:00 – 10:00 am | Pancake Breakfast presented by Melissa’s & Banff Park Lodge
Lynx St. between Banff Park Lodge and Homestead Inn
10:30 am | Canada Day Sidewalk Art
Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies5:00 – 6:30 pm | Canada Day Parade**
Banff Avenue
**Note road closures for this event.**Central Park

12:00 noon | Opening Ceremonies
12:25 pm | Singing of O Canada by Heather Jordan
12:30 pm | First Nations Blessing by The Hunt Family

1:00 pm | Family Fun Zone opens & Entertainment on the Gazebo stage

7:00 pm | Live music
11:00 pm |Fireworks, best views from Central Park

Full details available on Town of Banff’s website


July 1, Lake Louise

Lake Louise Rec Centre

8:30 – 10:30 am| Pancake Breakfast presented by the fire department

12:30 pm | Cake Cutting and Singing of  ‘O Canada’
12:30 – 3:30 pm | Family Fair incl. Magician show at 1:00 p.m., Face Painter, Bouncy Castle and BBQ until 2:00 p.m.

8:00 pm – 1:00 am | Evening Dance Party *over 18 only, no dogs allowed

Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise
9:00 – 9:15 am| Flag raising ceremony
9:15 – 10:00 am | Family Canoe Races

11:30 – 12:00 pm | Polar Bear Dip
12:00 – 4:00 pm | Children’s Play Zone

Lake Louise Village
10:00 – 2:00 pm| Celebrations at Samson Mall including traditional drumming, dancing, singing and food.
12:00 noon | Canada Day Parade
Village Road


Parking in the Town of Banff

The Town of Banff has launched a mobile website to help visitors find parking in town. Visit banffparking.ca to view the available parking spots, directions and time frames.

Source: Banff Lake Louise Tourism

 

Official Banff National Park Website

30 Apr

Question: Which website is the “official” website for Banff National Park?

As the snow melts and the temperatures start to rise here in Western Canada, it is time to start planning your spring, summer and fall vacations to beautiful Banff National Park. With so much information on the internet with varying degrees of accuracy, depending on the website owner’s intentions, where do you start?

Banff in Banff National Park

Firstly, don’t just submit your information to every website you come across. It is always best to call for information as most reputable companies are able to provide detailed Banff National Park information over the phone. If you are satisfied with the knowledge of the agent you spoke to about Banff National Park, and require more information, then submit your information through their website. Whenever you see the offer of things that are “FREE” without you having to book anything or part with any money, you have to ask yourself if this is really the case? Why would a company, out of their own pocket, send you something for “free”? This is one technique some website owners may use to harvest your personal information.

This brings me onto my next recommendation when looking up information on Banff National Park. The following three (3) OFFICIAL websites relating to Banff National Park offer up-to-date and accurate information. These websites should provide all the information you need to plan a successful stay in beautiful Banff National Park.

  • www.pc.gc.ca – This is the OFFICIAL website for all National Parks in Canada including Banff National Park. It is the official Banff National Park website and contains up-to-date information including trail updates. There is also an information centre located right in the centre of Banff at 224 Banff Avenue.
  • www.banff.ca – This is the OFFICIAL website of the Town of Banff. The information on this website is true and factual and includes information such as the Banff Roam transit schedule.
  • www.banfflakelouise.com – This is the OFFICIAL website for Banff and Lake Louise tourism in Banff National Park. This is an excellent website for viewing up-to-date information such as events in Banff and Lake Louise in Banff National Park.

These three websites should be your “go-to” sites to start your Banff vacation planning.

I hope you find this information useful and for many of you, clarified which sites are, in fact, “official” for Banff National Park. Feel free to contact us or post comments below if you require any further clarification or assistance. I have been helping guests with their Banff vacations for well over 10 years.

 

 

Bear safety in Banff National Park

06 Apr

Banff is in the wild and beautiful Banff National Park and so there may be a chance that you are lucky enough to see a bear.

There are two types of bears here: the black bear and the grizzly (or brown) bear. Don’t let the names fool you, you may see a brown or cinnamon coloured “black bear” like the cub with her mother photographed below:

Black Bear, Brown Cub photo

Black Bear

A Black Bear in Banff National Park

Grizzly Bear

Grizzly Bear in Banff National ParkThe grizzly bear can be identified by it’s distinctive hump on the back of it’s neck.

A grizzly bear is also larger than a black bear.

Each year, people get too close to wildlife especially bears. I personally have seen families stand in front of a bear cub on the side of the road to take pictures. This is not fair for the bear, especially the mother who is watching and may decide to protect her cub at anytime.

Please don’t put bears, or any other wildlife, in this position, it simply isn’t fair.

The bear safety information below has been sourced through Parks Canada:


What should I do if I see a BEAR?

If you are driving: stay in your car, and consider not stopping.

If you are not in a vehicle:

  • Stay calm. If a bear rears on its hind legs and waves its nose about, it is trying to identify you. Remain still and talk calmly so that it knows you are human and not a prey animal. Bears may also bluff charge: run toward you and turn away at the last moment. A scream or sudden movement may trigger an attack.
  • Pick up children, stay in a group.
  • Back away slowly, don’t run.
  • Leave the area. If this is impossible, wait until the bear leaves; make sure it has an escape route.

To reduce your risk of a surprise encounter:

  • Make noise. Clap, sing or yell to announce your presence, especially where a bear might not otherwise smell, hear or see you coming. (Bear bells are not very effective.)
  • Travel in groups, on established trails, and during daylight hours.
  • Minimize odours by proper storage of food, garbage and toiletries.
  • Leave the area if you see a bear or fresh tracks, droppings, diggings; or if you come across a large dead animal (a bear may be nearby).

If you surprise a bear and it defends itself:

Use bear spray if you have it. PLAY DEAD, let it know you are not a threat: lie on stomach with legs apart, cover back of head and neck with hands, keep pack on to protect your back.

If a bear stalks you and then attacks, or attacks at night:

Try to escape, use bear spray if you have it. FIGHT BACK, let it know that you are not easy prey. (This kind of predatory attack is very rare.)


After many on-foot bear encounters myself with both black and grizzly bears, the best form of defence is avoidance. If you make lots of noise by talking loudly to your hiking friends, you are very likely not going to see a bear. Be aware of bear presence (scat/faeces), damage to vegetation etc. and leave the area. If you are unable to leave the area, make lots of noise.

Guides are easily available so if you are not comfortable hiking in the wilderness then local experts can certainly take good care of you.

rocky-peak Holidays is a local company based in Canmore, just 5 minutes outside of Banff National Park and can help you find a suitable guide. There are also group hiking tours available.

Have you had a bear encounter you would like to share with us and our readers? Please post it below!

 

Canadian Rockies – Things to Remember

20 Aug

15 things to remember when you visit the Canadian Rockies in the summer: Canadian Rockies – Things to Remember in the Summer

 
 
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