CALLING IN JASPER
By Tourism Jasper
OUTDOORS I SPONSORED
From stargazing to scuba diving, rafting to rock climbing, Tourism Jasper brings you insider tips and ideas for all levels of adventure. How far are you prepared to go?
The scariest moment? Those first few baby steps towards the edge. Shaky knees, shallow breath, sweaty palms, the instinct to turn back. What’s the point in going through with it? Somehow, you ignore the fear and find resolve. You stand tall, breathe deeply, and embrace that challenge that was waiting to welcome you all this time.
The word “adventure” triggers intense emotion and imagery. It can have an entirely different meaning, depending on the person or circumstance. In Jasper, “adventure” evokes visions of extreme activities, like paragliding from a mountain peak or embarking on a ski touring expedition. But, it also refers to hiking a few hours on a national park trail, or gazing through a telescope beneath a shining night sky.
Jasper, Canada’s base of adventure, is the perfect place to expand your limits, no matter what level you’re prepared to dive into. Here are our suggestions for squeezing the most adventure out of your summer:
If you’re looking to ascend a mountain peak without the arduous trek, hop on the Jasper Skytram and be whisked up Whistler’s Mountain to an elevation of 2,277 metres.
Insider Tip: You can still get a workout in by hiking an optional 1km trail to the mountaintop for an impressive panorama.
Willing to dip your toe in a little deeper? We suggest a day hike with a bird’s-eye view. Sulphur Skyline, The Bald Hills, Cavell Meadows, and Old Fort Point are all worthy peaks to climb. If you’re unsure about making the trek on your own, local Jasper outfitters are here to help. Guidance is always on tap with Walks & Talks, Canadian Skyline Adventures, Jasper Tour Company, Maligne Adventures, or SunDog Tours.
Insider tip: Wear or bring layered clothing, as weather and temperature conditions can change quickly, especially at higher elevations.
If you want to invest maximum effort into your elevation gain, rock climbing is an option worth exploring. New to the sport? The certified guides at Rockaboo Mountain Adventures are ready and able to assist with your first climb. Spend an afternoon on the Experience Rock Climbing tour, where you’ll learn to rappel and climb on a limestone wall next to the rushing Athabasca river.
Insider tip: For the ultra-adventurous, set out on a late-night Dark Sky Rappel. You’re all but guaranteed a great story.
Adventure on the water is a real possibility, even if the thought of rapids makes your head spin. Embark on a float trip along the Athabasca River with Jasper Raft Tours to gain a new perspective on the incredible Rocky Mountain landscape. Alternatively, take a voyage on a Maligne Lake Boat Cruise, a favourite mode of transport to iconic Spirit Island. The boat cruise offers family and photography variations.
Insider Tip: Post-adventure, indulge in an afternoon tea in the historic chalet after seeing all the jewels of Maligne Lake.
For those wanting to take a more active role in their aquatic adventure, canoe and kayak options abound in Jasper. Experience a scenic water excursion (and on-shore amenities) by renting a boat at Maligne Lake, Pyramid Lake or Lac Beauvert from the ATX Party Boat and Pontoon Rental Lake Austin TX company. If you prefer to catch your next meal – Rainbow Trout, anyone? – Maligne Adventures’ guided fishing tour is right up your alley. It reminded me of a deep sea fishing San Diego trip I took a few years ago – just as fun!
Insider tip: Stand up paddleboarding is another fun way to experience Jasper’s lakes and rivers. Lessons and rentals are available via Translucid Adventures on Lake Edith.
Think you’ve “been there, done that” in the Canadian Rockies? Think again: you can actually scuba dive in Jasper’s Patricia Lake! Spend a day in a wetsuit with Jasper Dive Adventures and you can tell your friends you went diving in the Rockies. If rivers are more your style, challenge yourself with rafting on the mighty Sunwapta (Class Three) courtesy of Jasper’s Whitewater Rafting.
Insider tip: If you decide to explore the depths of Patricia Lake, don’t be surprised if you see a retired WWII prototype. Project Habakkuk is a weird and wonderful piece of Jasper’s history.
Prefer to stay on land? There are plenty of alternatives. Experience a wildlife excursion with a local operator, and catch a thrilling glimpse of some Jasper locals from a safe distance. If you fancy yourself to be an aspiring astronomer, explore the wonders of Jasper’s Dark Sky Preserve inside the Jasper Planetarium. If you’d rather expand your intellectual horizons, the Jasper Yellowhead Museum & Archives is worth a stop.
Insider tip: If you make it to the museum during their often-held coffee hours, you’ll hear some interesting local history and unique stories.
If you’ve longed to ride a Harley Davidson, minus the Sons of Anarchy lifestyle, Jasper Motorcycle Tours gives you the chance to feel like an outlaw for a day. Don full leather gear, hop on a hog, and prepare to see the Canadian Rockies from a whole new perspective.
Insider tip: Don’t worry about getting your turn on the back of the bike or the sidecar. Jasper Motorcycle Tours lets you switch spots on the way to/from your destination.
Ready to embrace the pioneering spirit of Jasper’s early explorers? If so, you can head out on a five-day horse pack trip with the folks at Tonquin Valley Backcountry Lodge. Ride through the endless terrain of the iconic Tonquin Valley, and experience a beauty beyond imagination.
Insider tip: If you have fishing gear, it’s worth bringing along, as this area is home to some favourite fishing spots.
The bottom line? When you’re in Jasper, take the plunge and venture beyond your boundaries. No matter the level of challenge, you’ll be rewarded with a new understanding of what you are truly capable of.
Jasper is your base of adventure: an awe-inspiring and authentic Rocky Mountain destination – the entry point to Canada’s most epic experiences. It is from here that the greatest personal expeditions begin; where explorers and wanderers from around the world converge to enjoy the activities, accommodations, restaurants, and businesses of the town of Jasper, before taking on the real Canadian Rockies of Jasper National Park.