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Rocky Mountaineer

Marcy Williams Published: June 24, 2013

The Rocky Mountaineer has three levels of service, Red Leaf, Silver Leaf, and Gold Leaf. We chose the Silver Leaf, which provided meals served at our seats in an observation car. The seating was comfortable, and we were able to move about the car easily. Passengers could also step out on the “vestibule” to experience the sights and sounds of being outside the car.

Our trip on the Rocky Mountaineer encompassed two full days, but the first day ended in the community of Kamloops where we disembarked and were transported to lodging for the night. Bright and early the next morning we were taken back to the rail station and boarded the same train, same car and began the ride to Jasper.

Aboard the car were three young “hosts,” a young man and a young woman who were Canadian and a young woman who was originally from France. They served as “tour guides” and kept us informed about the beautiful landscapes, wildlife, and historic locations we passed. They also served the gourmet breakfast and lunch and snacks at our seats each day.

Jasper National Park and Banff National Park are part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks. One entrance fee allowed us to sightsee from Jasper to Lake Louise and on to Banff. Once we arrived in Jasper, we picked up our rental car and stayed two nights at the Lobstick Lodge. When we asked where to turn on the air conditioning, we were told to open the windows.

The mountain views were impressive, but the best was seen from the top of the Jasper Tramway. This is known as the longest and highest guided aerial tramway in Canada, and seeing Jasper and the surrounding lakes and mountains was spectacular. We also visited the Athabasca Falls, where the Athabasca River forces its way over and through huge boulders.

From Jasper we drove to Lake Louise. The drive gave us many photo opportunities and a continuing appreciation for the beauty of the Canadian Rockies.