What to Expect – Banff National Park

Location:

The Town of Banff is situated in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta, Canada and located inside the boundaries of Banff National Park. It is 128 kilometers (80 miles) west of Calgary, 401 kilometers (250 miles) southwest of Edmonton and 850 kilometers (530 miles) east of Vancouver. Commercial airlines service each of these three Canadian cities, and buses to Banff and Lake Louise run year round.

Source: Town of Banff 

Lake Louise, 2.4 km long, elevation 1731 m, is located in Banff National Park in southwestern Alberta. Lake Louise’s outlet is a creek flowing into the Bow River. The Stoney called it Ho-run-num-nay meaning “lake of the little fishes” and it was a Stoney guide who took Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) workman Tom Wilson to the site in 1882. Wilson named it Emerald Lake, but the name was changed (1884) to honour Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, fourth daughter of Queen Victoria and wife of Governor General the marquess of Lorne.

Source: The Canadian Encyclopedia 

Time Zone:

Mountain Daylight Time (MDT)

Climate:


In early September things start to cool off, daytime temperatures can still be quite pleasant at around 10C./50F. Sometimes summer extends itself and we are blessed with higher temperatures, but the evenings and mornings will be crisp. Early October can be much the same, but the temperatures will keep progressively dropping. The first signs of snow can start as early as September or October. Each year is different.

BANFF

Average Oct
Daily High (°C) 10.1
Daily Low (°C) -1.1
Daily High (°F) 50
Daily Low (°F) 31
Rainfall (mm) 15.4
Snowfall (cm) 18.9
Hrs of Sun/Day 10.7

 

1 inch = 2.54 cm; 10 mm = 1 cm

 

LAKE LOUISE

Average Oct
Daily High (°C) 7.9
Daily Low (°C) -5.3
Daily High (°F) 46
Daily Low (°F) 22
Rainfall (mm) 13.6
Snowfall (cm) 24.4
Hrs of Sun/Day 10.7

 

Source: http://www.infobanff.com/info/?i=aw

Seasons:

Fall in Banff and Lake Louise is a time for invigorating adventures and nourishing connections. As the air becomes crisper, the trees come alive with radiant colors and the serenity of fall replaces the buzz of summertime. It’s the perfect time to connect with the beauty of our natural environment for a trip full of vibrant and tranquil experiences.

Fall is the locals’ favourite time of the year to hike, with cooler temperatures, fewer people on the trails, and breathtaking colours. It’s a wonderful opportunity to seek fulfilling experiences indoors too. Take part in events such as the Banff Centre Mountain Film and Book Festival and adventurous culinary offerings, or wind down your day of exploration with lingering dinners and long conversations next to a cozy fire.

Spending Guide:

  • Breakfast: $10.00 – $30.00 CAD
  • Lunch: $15.00 – $30.00 CAD
  • Dinner: $20.00 – $90.00 CAD
  • Beer/glass of wine: $6.00 CAD or more
  • Bottle of wine: $30 CAD or more
  • Soft drinks: $2.00 CAD or more

Currency:


The Canadian currency system uses paper bills called dollars as well as a number of coins. The bills used most frequently for daily transactions are $5, $10 and $20. There’s also $50 and $100. If you’re exchanging money it’s best to get a variety of denominations.

The coins are 5 cents, 10 cents and 25 cents, respectively called nickels, dimes and quarters. The one dollar coin is called a Loonie because of the Loon bird on the front of it. Then the two dollar coin was introduced and became known as the Toonie. As you can see Canadians have an interesting sense of humor. Unless you want to keep them for souvenirs don’t forget to spend the coins before you head back home. Banks will only exchange paper bills.

Shopping:



BANFF
The town of Banff has a wide variety of shops, with everything from big brand clothing and technical outerwear, to local art and must-have souvenirs. Spend time on Banff Avenue browsing the latest in men’s and women’s fashions, or make a quick stop to pick up some new gear on the way to your next adventure. Explore the shops selling genuine Canadian goods, sports equipment, and gifts for everyone on your list and don’t miss Canada’s largest, year-round Christmas store for a festive experience in any season.

Bear Street in Banff town offers shoppers a creative and laid back feel. Wander through the eclectic mix of art galleries, bike shops, and health and wellness stores. You’ll also find true Canadian treasures in original art, handcrafted jewelry, native crafts and souvenirs – all perfect for taking home to friends and family.

A selection of grocery, liquor, and convenience stores in Banff and Lake Louise carry everything you need to fully stock your hotel room or condo, or to help you pack a picnic lunch. If you have a special occasion while you’re here, there are specialty stores selling all the essentials, from florists, bakeries and wine stores, to sweet shops and party supply stores.

LAKE LOUISE
While Banff offers the greatest variety and number of stores, the hamlet of Lake Louise has excellent ski and snowboard shops in the resort and a small shopping mall in the village for groceries, liquor, gifts and souvenirs. More shopping can also be found at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise.

Health Tips:


For a comprehensive guide on healthcare resources in Banff and Lake Louise, please visit https://banff.ca/DocumentCenter/View/4772/Stay-Healthy–Guide-to-Health-Care-in-the-Bow-Valley?bidId=

Wildlife Awareness & Safety:

If you go for an early morning jog through the town of Banff, don’t be too surprised if you see deer wandering down Banff Avenue, and if you drive the Bow Valley Parkway you might spot an elk grazing by the road or a herd of bighorn sheep darting up the bank. It’s always a memorable experience to catch sight of these majestic animals in the wild.

Animals are an integral part of the ecosystem. They are also wild animals, not tame. For these reasons it is important you are aware of how to help protect both yourself and the animals. You should never try to get too close or give food to wildlife. In fact, it is illegal to feed, touch, or even approach wild animals.

Parks Canada uses an ecosystem-based wildlife management approach that aims to preserve the ecology of the park while still providing for visitors. There are a number of measures in place in Banff National Park to keep wildlife and people safe and happy. For example, you will see bear-proof garbage bins, and wildlife fencing alongside the highways which prevent animals from getting on the roads. Banff National Park has also been successful in developing wildlife crossings – underpasses and overpasses – to enable animals to connect their habitats safely and protect motorists.

Disrupting animals’ activities can have serious effects on their wellbeing. During the summer months Banff National Park’s grizzly and black bears have to accumulate enough fat reserves to survive the upcoming winter. Bears are sensitive, and if you get too close or crowd them it may force bears to abandon good foraging spots for inferior ones and expend unnecessary energy. It can also lead to them getting too comfortable around people – putting both the bear and visitors at risk.

The Parks Canada website has information on bears in Banff National Park. It includes safety tips on what to do if you do encounter a bear and how to keep a bear-safe campsite. It also reports recent bear sightings.

Water:

In the Canadian Rockies, glacial ice dating back tens of thousands of years cap the rugged peaks, making up the very fabric of our landscapes. They watch over the mountains and valleys below and feed them life through the pristine turquoise waters that flow through the rivers and lakes, building in mineral richness as it travels over mountain granite, limestone, and sedimentary rock.

This glacial water is among the highest quality in the world. Its distinct qualities make it a key ingredient in some of the beverages we enjoy after a day of adventuring in the mountains. At times, these adventures take place on the very glaciers from which the water in our glass began its path.

Long story short, you can feel more than confident and comfortable drinking our tap water – it’s some of the best in the world!

   
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