here's a bit of background... on 16th June 1980, when I was 12, my family moved to Nova Scotia with the intention od emigrating. Dad worked for a while to earn some corn to buy a 1972 Econoline van (in nice two tone brown) then at the end of summer (just as the schools started back) we drove all the way across to Swan River, Manitoba to visit friends who'd emigrated a couple of years previously. after a few weeks we then continued west and got as far as Banff before the first snows made us turn about and head back to NS. we stayed there until December before deciding to head back to Scotland where the family farm still had things to tie up, but my grandfather passed away meaning the emigration got shelved.
now, 28 years later I've decided to complete the trip for my 40th by hiring a bike, as well as doing some wildlife watching trips on Vancouver Island (without the bike). so, this coming June my wife and I are hiring a 'Strom thou (via a UK travel company HC Travel) from a Vancouer bike shop intending to do a loop of the Rockies taking in the scenery, good roads, wildlife, good food and bike friendly accomodation between Vancouver, Jasper and Banff.
I did a similar trip the other way round last summer. Pics and such here. One of these days I really will get around to filling in the ride notes I finally found my diary from the ride the other day.
I don't know which I liked best, the camping, the roads, or the scenery. I guess I would have to say the roads though since although I have traveled the same route dozens of times this was the first time on a bike.
Oh, and if you plan on camping in the National Parks you would be advised to try and get reservations. Banff and Jasper get pretty full during the Summer. The rest of BC has some great Provincial campgrounds where you don't need a reservation but it is first come first served. I usually try to get up early to get a jump on the traffic and then finish riding early to get a jump on the available camping spots.
June is the beginning of the peak season. Things will be busy with German and Japanese tourists. Most of them are on buses. If you want wilderness, stay away from the tourist areas.
I recommend you look into hot springs in BC. They are a great way to plan a trip for bikers. There are quite a few in the Kootenays that you could incorporate into your trip. Most have camping facilities and will soothe your aching bones.
The Strom will handle the secondary and gravel roads no problem. They are where the real scenery is.
gringorojo ... that doesn't SOUND like a Scottish name
Anyway, make sure you ride up highway 99 from Vancouver to Whistler and beyond. Some of the views are breathtaking. You can visit the lovely town of Squamish and perhaps rendez-vous with Water Warrior there.
I think the prettiest parts of Canada are found at either end of it. You already know the NS parts, and you will be impressed by British Columbia's mountains, glaciers, and especially by her warm and welcoming people.
I mean no disrespect to Ontario, where I was born. Stan Rogers was born there, and a line in one of his songs is "Your scummy lakes and the city of Toronto don't do a damn thing for me". I think that's too harsh, but Ontario's rugged grandeur is not quite the same as BC's vertical landscape and Newfoundland's relentless coastline.
thanks guys, we're there for most of June. (the first week we're up Knight inlet for some bear watching) 5th to the 29th and biking from the 12th to the 26th. might be good to meet up with a local WW, thanks for the offer.
we're deffo doing the sea to sky highway. not intending camping but likely using Motels instead. any recommendations/places/one to avoid?
want to do Jasper & Banff too.
the name comes from a bike holiday to Spain in 2003 where I got a bit much sun on the first couple of days and turned a bit pink as you might expect of someone with celtic blood and fair hair rojo being red/pink in Spanish I'm informed. the avatar pic hopefully shows my origins
I like that flag. I have an all-weather Scotland flag, and I fly it on Robbie Burns' Day, Hogmanay, and occasionally on other days to cheer my Scottish neighbour. She works hard, so I sometimes buy some shortbread for her, just to see her smile.
And I identify with the "rojo" part of your handle. The nickname of my Wee-Strom is Colorado, and appropriately enough it is red.
K5Wee in Kanada (285,500 KM and still going strong)
IF YOU WON'T STAND BEHIND OUR TROOPS.....FEEL FREE TO STAND IN FRONT OF THEM
Manitoba isn't that bad. Haven't ridden there but have driven there. Southern end of the province is pretty. We will of course leave Manitoba after a couple days visiting with Lynda's family so we will pick an choose a route at our leisure to see the sights. The route Eastbound is already decided. Saskatchewan................ARGH !!