Alberta -

Banff – Lake Louise

Banff, always spectacular

By Mario Daniel, special contributon and GendronSki Group Leader
 

Last winter was my fourth time enjoying a ski vacation in Banff. That’s right, my fourth time! And, it’s not for a lack of imagination. It just never disappoints!

First off, I really enjoy being in the heart of one of Canada’s most beautiful national parks, surrounded by snow-capped mountains, and coming across wild elk as I make my way through downtown Banff. Where else do you get to see that?

The Town of Banff itself boasts an unimaginable number of restaurants, bars and shops of all kinds, all within walking distance from key hotels. And, if your legs are too tired after a long day of intense skiing, you can always hop on the local bus, which gets you around town in a flash and runs from early in the morning until late at night.

As far as skiing goes, you’ll have lots to choose from in Banff since your lift ticket includes access to three resorts. Norquay is the first, and smallest, of the three, and is located just a few short minutes from downtown by bus. Don’t let yourself be fooled by its small size though—its steep slopes procure a fine challenge, both during the day and at night.

The second is Sunshine, a superb ski resort that provides access to three summits and 100% natural snow. Since there are very few trees here, it is best to ski the day after a storm or when the weather is clear; this mountain has immense fields of snow and benefits from an incredible amount of snowfall every year.

The third and last of Banff’s resorts is Lake Louise which, in my opinion, offers the most out of the three. It has a wide variety of groomers that are perfect for everyone, from less experienced skiers all the way through to professionals. That’s right, professionals! Let’s not forget, after all, that Lake Louise has been part of the Alpine Ski World Cup competition for the last few years. More advanced skiers will definitely want to head over to the back bowls to revel in the untouched natural snow and impressive drop-offs. If you happen to go a few days without a snowfall, and you’re still on the hunt for powder, I’ll let you in on a little secret: take the Ptarmigan Chair and head for the gladed Pika trees. The amount of snow in this backcountry area is absolutely astounding. It’s a less frequented spot that is sure to provide the challenge you are looking for.

Another great thing about Banff is the long ski seasons—longer than anywhere else in North America, in fact. The town’s inland location also makes it less sensitive to rising temperatures. Now, you may be wondering about how much a Banff ski vacation might cost you. But, really, it’s much more reasonable than you think. Keep in mind that winter is off-peak season in Banff, so packages are usually available at a decent price—and, most importantly, in Canadian dollars!

Happy skiing !

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OPTIONS

  • For an unforgettable experience, you can enjoy slopeside accommodations by combining a stay at Sunshine Mountain Lodge for a few nights with a stay in the Town of Banff.
  • You can also opt for a ski safari and combine your stay in Banff with one or several other Western Canadian destinations. Car rental is available. (No entry fees for National parks in 2017!)
  • Cross-country skiing packages available (Banff/Canmore).
  • Day trip to Kicking Horse including lift ticket available on request. $ 89 / pers.
For more details, contact our ski specialists.  


Interested in this Destination? Request a Quote!



GOLF COURSES



PARCS NATIONAUX

SPECTACLES

Banff, Alberta

Accompanied by

February 3, 2018 to February 10, 2018


$ 2 295 1 795 / pers.
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Banff, Alberta

Accompanied by

March 3, 2018 to March 10, 2018


$ 2 465 1 895 / pers.
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Banff, Alberta

Accompanied by

March 10, 2018 to March 17, 2018


$ 2 465 1 895 / pers.
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Banff, Alberta

Accompanied by

March 25, 2018 to March 31, 2018


$ 2 195 1 695 / pers.
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Text from 2015-2016 ski magazine 

A classic worth rediscovering!

By Bianca Montpetit Ski Travel Consultant

Being a Ski Travel Consultant, people often ask me what my favourite Western Canadian destination is. As an intermediate skier, I tend to prefer long descents and spectacular views, withoutnecessarily risking my life at every turn! So, Banff is a natural choice for me. Ease and variety are what this resort is all about. Let me explain what I mean. First off, once you get to Calgary, a coach bus will be waiting to take you to the Town of Banff, so you won’t have to rent a car. And, once on site, you can make use of the shuttle system—one of the most efficient in Canada.

Free (and punctual) shuttle buses will get you to three ski resorts as well as several other attractions including the famous hot springs. I swear there must be a stop at least every 10 metres—really! Accommodation-wise, if your budget is limited, you might want to stay in a youth hostel. If, however, you are travelling as a family and want access to a kitchen, there is a wide range of condos to choose from. Then again, maybe you are looking for luxury accommodations, in which case the renowned Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is sure to meet your expectations. No matter who you are or what you need, there is something for everyone, at every price, in Banff.

When it comes to choosing where to ski, you simply can’t go wrong with any of the internationally renowned resorts you’ll find here. You would need way more than a week to try them all out, though. Sunshine, which happens to be my favourite, offers a multitude of intermediate terrain options with just enough oomph. This resort also has lots of legendary off-piste runs like Delirium Dive, which I will personally leave to the experts (who, be warned, are also well advised to hire a guide). As an added bonus, Sunshine will inaugurate a new lift in 2016—the Tee Pee—which has the added luxury of heated seats, perfect for keeping your bottom toasty on those extra cold days! Lake Louise is another great option you might want to explore. Although this resort is a favourite for World Cup skiers looking to beat their speed records, I like to take my time as I glide down the runs here, contemplating the gorgeous scenery along the way.

Often suggested for a first-time ski vacation, Banff has quickly become a favourite with Eastern Canadians. Fun fact: elk are often known to come strolling into town, so keep your eyes peeled if you want to catch a glimpse of them during your après-ski down time!

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The Banff Gondola: An Experience As Big As The Views. from Brewster Travel Canada on Vimeo.

Ski stations Accommodations Snow Conditions
TEMPERATURE (CELSIUS)
Month Min. Max.
January -13 1
February -8 2
March -7 4
April -2 9
May 2 14
June 5 19
July 7 22
August 7 22
September 3 16
October 1 10
November -7 1
December -11 3

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