North America: a Canadian Rockies winter beyond skiing



Canada’s most scenic mountain roadway, the Icefields Parkway, spans 230 km from Lake Louise to Jasper and is the route to over 100 visible glaciers, lakes, waterfalls and numerous hiking trails. One of the major highlights along the way is the Columbia Icefield Glacier Adventure on the border of Banff and Jasper National Parks. Local operator Massive Brewster Ice Explorers takes passengers on a remarkable excursion onto the surface of the Athabasca Glacier. This tongue of ice is six kilometres long and one kilometre wide.

Each 80 minute journey is led by an experienced driver-guide, who shares a wealth of information about glaciers, icefields and their impact on the environment. During the tour, passengers can safely step out onto the glacier and walk on the ancient ice. Tours depart every 15 to 30 minutes from the Icefield Centre on the Icefields Parkway.


A different way to explore the Rockies during winter is to hook yourself up to a sled, with your very own team of huskies at the helm. Dog mushing, as this traditional sport is called, allows the participant to be involved from start to finish. Participants harness the dogs, drive the team under the guidance of a professional guide, and reward them with a biscuit and water at the end of the run.

Travelling along mountain trails and enjoying the crisp alpine air, participants will take in stunning views ranging from snow capped forests to frozen waterfalls and icy waters. Those who want to sit back and relax can be a passenger and let the guide do the work.

Dogsledding experiences are available in several locations in the Rockies including Banff and Canmore, Lake Louise and Jasper. Operators offer a range of tours catering for different sizes of groups and traveller demographics.


Christmas tree decorating, letters to Santa, family movie nights, Christmas dinners and bedtime stories accompanied by milk and cookies are all part of the Christmas at The Castle experience offered at The Fairmont Banff Springs. These experiences and more are all available for guests staying at this famous luxury hotel, which is a National Historic Site. Visitors can experience this festive time surrounded by the alpine wonderland that is the Canadian Rockies in Banff National Park.

Among the other experiences on offer are a traditional Christmas singalong, a family skating party, cookie decorating and a parade of Christmas characters, who wind their way through the hallways of the hotel, led by Santa.