Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Canadian Rockies - Jasper, AB

The town of Jasper is located in Jasper National Park, at the north end of the Icefields Parkway. Since we planned to be in the area for a week we bought the seasonal Canadian National Parks Pass for a whopping $116.00. This pass allows us to drive the Parkway from Jasper to Banff (approx. 150 miles).

Jasper was named for Jasper Hawes, who was an employee of the Northwest Company. He operated a fur trading post in the eastern part of the park. By the time the post was abandoned, the name Jasper was used to describe the whole area. The area is surrounded by mountains and teeming with wildlife.

Entering Jasper Townsite

Mt. Edith Cavelle, Seen From Downtown Jasper

We stayed for 2 nights at Whistler’s Campground and enjoyed dry (no services) camping.
We decided to have a campfire and were a bit surprised to find that you must pay an environmental tax of $8.80 per day for the privilege of burning wood. We paid the tax and enjoyed two wonderful campfires. Signs were everywhere warning of bears and other wildlife. The only evidence we saw was this bear trap.

Bear Trap Located at the Entrance to Whistler Campground

Since we only had one day to tour Jasper we decided to head downtown. Keith remembered Jasper as a stop on a year 2000 cross-country train trip, with a pretty good Chinese restaurant acrss the street from the station. We had lunch at this restaurant, and it was pretty good (3COWS).

A Good Chinese Restaurant Located
Opposite the Train Station in Jasper

Main Street Jasper is filled many interesting stores. Kathy shopped and shopped some more, while Keith explored the train yard and did some people watching.

Jasper Retail Therapy District

Antique Steam Locomotive at Jasper Train Station

Heavy Freight Rolling Through Jasper

After two nights in Jasper, we departed south on the Icefields Parkway, headed for Lake Louise and Banff. Stay tuned.

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