† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.
The Canadian Rockies and Undiscovered Foothills tour is a two-week adventure incorporating the best cycling roads of the southwest Alberta foothills and mountains with a quiet approach into the Canadian Rockies through Kananaskis Country. The entire route is abundant with gorgeous views and all roads are very well maintained, many with wide shoulders.
Predominantly, the route is within the provincial or national park systems. The trip begins in Calgary exploring its extensive bike path system and heads south into the quiet rolling hills of the Alberta foothills. The group then travels west climbing into Kananaskis Country before heading northwest through Banff and Jasper National Parks. The skiing events for the 1988 Winter Olympics were held in Kananaskis and the area sports quiet, beautiful cycling and hiking routes. The winding and spectacular rolling Bow Valley Parkway joins Banff and Lake Louise with places to visit including Johnson Canyon and Castle Mountain Trail. The route from Lake Louise to Jasper along the Icefield Parkway is a world-class journey offering access to a vast wilderness of pristine mountain lakes, ancient glaciers and broad sweeping valleys. The last biking day will include a cycling loop to Jasper with optional hiking of Maligne Canyon and a visit to Jasper Park Lodge. The participants, bicycles and luggage will be shuttled from Jasper National Park back to Calgary on Saturday, July 27th via the scenic views of the Icefield Parkway and TransCanada highway.
Daily, each park offers opportunities to see diverse wildlife, stop at majestic viewpoints, and view interpretive displays. Highlights of these unique natural features are too abundant to list but a few include the Columbia Icefield, Peyto Lake at Bow Summit, Lake Louise, Big Hill and Big Bend, Forget-Me-Not Pond, Sulphur Mountain overlooking Banff, Athabasca Falls, and the Valley of the Ten Peaks at Moraine Lake. Daily wildlife sightings could include black bears, grizzlies, big horn sheep, elk, deer, moose, and hundreds of species of birds. In addition to numerous optional bike routes, hiking opportunities along the route are spectacular and plentiful. For those more adventurous, the area sports world-class whitewater river rafting, fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, and hiking mountain summits at Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper accessible by gondola or skytram. The cycling trip has been designed to avoid traffic and tourist congestion. The link below will take you to a YouTube video that showcases the tranquility and natural wonders in Banff National Park highlighted on the cycling route of the Canadian Rockies and Undiscovered Foothills bike tour.
The leaders of this trip are avid cyclists who live in Calgary with extensive collective knowledge of the area. The foothills region south of Calgary leading into Highwood Pass in Kananaskis Country is a well-kept secret not frequented by any commercial bike groups... just the locals ride here.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
Participants are expected to come to the tour in good health and ready to ride. Riders will be tested for Covid before the Orientation Dinner on July 15th and during the trip, as required. Should someone's health become compromised with any contagious ailment and the group’s health and safety placed in jeopardy, the infected individual will be required to maintain isolation from all group members until their symptoms have disappeared. The expectation is for the group to work together to mitigate any spread of infection or illness as a means to ensure the tour can continue as planned. The isolation rule will be strictly enforced and individuals who don't comply will be asked to leave the trip. It is highly recommended that participants be vaccinated for Covid and if there is a Covid wave after March 31, 2024, participants will be required to be vaccinated/boosted and be prepared to present vaccination documentation for viewing by the Ride Leader, if requested.
After leaving Calgary, it is not difficult for participants to avoid crowds and limit their exposure to others that are not part of the cycling trip due to the remoteness of the areas covered by this trip. Weather permitting, activities including happy hour, will be usually held outdoors.
3B rating is based on a daily average of 49 miles and 2,832 feet of ascent over 7 mandatory days entirely on paved roads. There are five hotels where the group stays for 2 nights. Organized hiking and cycling options are offered on the layover days. Alternatively, you can kick back and enjoy the tranquility of the region, hotel amenities or engage in another outdoor adventure/sport.
This ride is perfect for groups and couples who want to ride together but vary in their desired speed, mileage and amount of daily ascent. Participants will be encouraged to stop to take photos of the beautiful scenery and visit other offerings along the cycling route. For those wanting more challenging riding, there are numerous opportunities alternate routes, and side roads ascending to viewpoints and ski areas followed by fast downhills before re-joining the group on the main route. For those participants who bring gravel bikes, there are numerous options for offroad riding on the layover days.
Additional support is available over the three major mountain passes due to the high altitude and elevation gain, distance, lack of amenities, and variability in weather. Highwood Pass in Kananaskis Country is the summit of the highest paved road in Canada peaking at 7,238 feet while Bow Summit at 6,800 feet and Sunwapta Pass at 6,677 feet above sea level are located along the Icefield Parkway. The distance and ascent for the daily ride across Highwood Pass is 54 miles (3,854 feet), Bow Summit is 51 miles (3,120 feet) and Sunwapta Pass is 62 miles (3,815 feet). All roads are paved and most with asphalt in near perfect condition with generous shoulders. Once inside the parks, climbs are long and steady but unless you venture on the side roads, generally do not exceed 8% grade. There is one notable exception for a 2-mile stretch along the Icefield Parkway at Big Hill and Big Bend (Sunwapta Pass).
WEATHER & ELEVATION
It can get very cool in the high altitudes of the Canadian Rockies at night and riders should be prepared for all weather conditions. Even in the middle of summer, mornings are usually chilly until the sun is sufficiently high to clear the mountains. As a result, morning departures will generally not be before 9:30 am so cyclists can enjoy the warmest hours of the day for their ride. Average monthly high/low temperatures in the Canadian Rockies for the month of July are 72/45 Fahrenheit with average rainfall for the entire month of 2.7 inches. If temperatures are unusually hot, as they were on the 2022 BAC trip, the departure times will be adjusted accordingly.
LODGING & MEALS
Accommodations vary from historic mountain lodges and cabins to the opulence of the Rimrock Resort hotel within walking distance of Sulphur Mountain hot springs. There is an indoor pool and/or hot tub at our respective hotel for 7 of the 13 nights. Most meals will be provided as part of the cost of this tour, in part, to be able to explore remote areas where there are no or limited restaurant options. Meals provided include 13 breakfasts, 5 gourmet lunches, and 6 dinners.
This point-to-point trip starts and ends at Hotel Clique near the Calgary International Airport (YYC). There are several daily direct flights offered by various airlines between YYC and many major U.S. and international cities. Hotel Clique offers a free shuttle service to/from YYC airport.
The group will meet in the lobby of Hotel Clique at 5:00 pm on Monday, July 15, 2024 to gather before the welcome dinner.
The group shuttle from Jasper to Hotel Clique in Calgary has an expected arrival of late afternoon on Saturday, July 27, 2024. The tour ends after breakfast on Sunday, July 28, 2024.
A list of bike rental options can be obtained prior to the trip, upon request, from the Ride Director. Due to constraints transporting bikes from Jasper to Calgary, the number of heavy (over 25 pounds) and over-sized bikes including tandems will be limited.
A Zoom Orientation Meeting to help prepare participants prior to the trip will be held in May or June 2024 with additional orientation on Day 2 in Bragg Creek.
COST & ADMINISTRATION
Estimated cost of the trip is $4,400 using a USD/CAD exchange rate of .75. The trip cost may be adjusted with significant changes in the USD/CAD exchange rate. Unused funds will be refunded post tour. The trip includes 24 meals noted above, 13 night's accommodation, luggage transfer, van support as required, snack stops along the route, printed cue sheets with maps and elevation profiles, GPS files, sharing local knowledge of the area, shuttle from Jasper to Calgary on July 28th, guided hiking, naturalist talk, national park passes, and 11 happy hours. Items not covered as part of the trip include pre and post tour transportation to/from Calgary, bicycle rental, and extra non-cycling activities such as gondola rides, glacier walk, entrance fees to the hot springs, and other non-cycling activities.
Once accepted on this ride, you will receive an email notification to login to the BAC website to sign the release of liability form and pay the non-refundable $50 BAC ride registration fee and the initial tour deposit of $1,900 by credit card. The final payment of $2,500 is due no later than March 29, 2024.
SINGLES & SOLOS POLICY
It is recommended that singles who want a roommate try to find their own. However, after receipt of the initial deposit, a single without a roommate will be placed on the ride and given until March 1, 2024 to find a roommate. If they are unable to find a roommate, they will have the option to receive a full refund (minus the BAC fee and payment processing fee) or pay the $1,900 solo supplement and stay on the ride. If a single pays the supplement, they may continue to seek a roommate, but must plan to participate without a roommate if necessary. The Ride Leader will assist by attempting to match singles who apply for the ride. Solo supplement payments need to be sent to the BAC office. Checks should be made out to “BAC” with a notation of the tour name included on the check and mailed to: Bicycle Adventure Club, PO Box 23998, San Diego, CA 92193.
There is capacity for a limited number of solo riders who wish to have their own room. The solo supplement is $1,900 and must be received by the BAC office by March 29, 2024.
The $50 BAC ride registration fee and the payment processing fee is not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled. Refunds will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped. The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour's remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations. If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund will be made at that time. If the cancelling participant can't be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and final expense report is completed. If a single participant cancels and another roommate cannot be found, in addition to other costs that cannot be recouped, the cancelling roommate may be liable for the solo supplement fee of the roommate remaining on the tour. BAC encourages members to purchase personal trip cancellation insurance.
RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY
Please remember that BAC Ride Leaders are volunteers, and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well-maintained bicycles. All participants should accept responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from Ride Leader. While on the ride, support your Ride Leader with offers to help with various tasks such as happy hour preparation and clean-up. Please do not interfere with the ride by inviting non-participants onto any portion of the ride or tour. Please keep the Ride Leader informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Leader’s decisions.
BAC maintains insurance that covers expenses related to accidents, medical emergencies such as sudden and unexpected sickness, and repatriation. This coverage applies when touring outside the US, regardless of your nationality, with the exception of Canadians cycling within Canada who are not covered. It will cover you door-to-door for a maximum of 90 days but will expire if you make a side trip not related to the BAC tour for more than 7 days before or after. There is limited coverage for a family member to join a covered person in an emergency. The policy covers the cost of treatment for Covid and other unexpected illnesses, but not quarantine. Coverage is subject to a $1,000 deductible. You should ensure that your vaccinations are up to date.
To register for this ride, use the sign-up links just above the Ride Description. After preliminary acceptance, you will be moved to the pending list and receive an email requesting you to go back to the BAC site to digitally accept the terms of the Release of Liability (ROL), and pay the non-refundable BAC Ride Registration Fee and Tour Deposit by credit card. As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List. BAC members with questions may contact the Ride Director by “clicking” the name at the top of this Ride Description.
Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 email@example.com