Road Cycling in the rockies

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by Glorified_G, Jan 13, 2005.

  1. Glorified_G

    Glorified_G New Member

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    Well, I'm heading out west in a couple of months and once the weather clears up, I'd like to get back on the bike.

    I'm most likely going to be in the Banff area. I've been in the area before (w/o a bike) and the little that I saw was spectacular, but does anyone suggest anywhere I "must" go? I think this will be a good oppurtunity to get back into cycling shape while seeing the sites.

    Thanks :)
     
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  2. stang106

    stang106 New Member

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    You will love cycling in the Rockies. Bring both a roadbike and a MTN bike as there are great opportunities for both. The last two Junes I cycled through the Rockies starting at Mt. Robson and finishing at Lake Louise. Banff is far to busy for me. There are more trails oped to MTN bikes so get a National Park map and plan where you want to go. I started all my rides near daybreak to see the animals; we had to stop to let an Elk heard pass once and I rode next to an Elk running along the road another time. Careful, they are dangerous. I basically raced a guy (ex-class 1) from one end to the other and our wives came later in the day with the trucks and trailers. Some of the hills have thousands of feet elevation gain and are miles long. I was getting tunnel vision by the time I got to the top of the Columbia Ice Field hill. The "Ice Fields Parkway" is also closed to trucks and has a great shoulder so cycling is safe. Just be prepared, I was roasted by scorching sun one day and rode through sleet another, and never felt my numb feet for six hours on another. I loved every minute as you are going slow enough to see the scenery and the air is crisp and clean. I'm very envious of your trip; I've rode many different countrys and places and The Canadian rockies is on the top of my favorite list.
    Enjoy,
    Dave
     
  3. momiles

    momiles New Member

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    The 1A from Banff to Lake Louise and back (~100km return) is a good bet, much less traffic then the main highway, flat to rolling. Try the Highwood Pass in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park (West of Banff) good climb, superb scenery and good road. The David Thompson Highway from Saskatchwan River Crossing towards Rocky Mountain House is a little known jewel for road biking, with a wide shoulder (beware of west wind later in the day) and if you are into long hills try the 26km sustained 6-8% grade road (~3000' elevation gain) in Mt Revelstoke National Park (not the Rockies but fairly close, and worth the visit), a screamer of a downhill with multiple switchbacks.


     
  4. Glorified_G

    Glorified_G New Member

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    That's great!! Thank you both. I'll make sure I check out as much as I can.

    I am planning on bringing both my mtn bike and my road bike.

    Another question. I've discussed the weather with friends before, but since you both have some experience riding in that area, roughly when does the weather clear up enough to start riding regularly? I understand the weather there can be very unpredictable.
     
  5. momiles

    momiles New Member

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    Weather is always suspect in the Rockies....it can snow in August, or any month of the year for that matter. Your best bet would be mid July to mid August....beyond that you have to roll the dice.

    Couple of corrections form my previous post, Peter Loughheed Provincial Park is east of Banff about 1 hour (great mountain biking there as well as Kananaskis Provincial Park, perhaps better than the National Parks). The climb in Revelstoke National Park is more like 4500' (500m to 1900m). To much wine the other night added to my dyslexia.

    Enjoy



     
  6. Glorified_G

    Glorified_G New Member

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    Thanks for the tips. I'm just looking for some seasonal work out there. There's a good chance I'll be spending my summer between Banff and Jasper.
     
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