fun to do kids jasper national park alberta canada   Travel for Kids
  | Alberta | Canadian Rockies

Jasper National Park

Jasper National Park is one of the seven Canadian Rocky Mountain National Parks established in the late 19th century and is a hiker's paradise, with over 600 miles of trails. It's a spectacular wild area where bighorn sheep, elk, mule deer, grizzly bears, mountain lions, wolves and wolverines roam free. There's plenty of great hikes for kids, but it's also best to stick to trails. After all, the bears and wolves live here – you're just a guest.
  Hike onto Prehistoric Ice (Columbia Icefield) – The Athabasca, Stutfield and Dome glaciers at the Continental Divide are known collectively as the Columbia Icefield. The enormous “field” of prehistoric ice melts into rivers running to the Arctic, Pacific, and Atlantic Oceans. A finger of the ice fields looms spectacularly close to the highway. You can take an “Ice Explorer ” tour (mid-April to mid-October). The Ice Explorer is a huge bus with tank like rollers that goes right onto the glacier – safe and comfortable, but keeps you at arm's length. For a more up-close-and-personal experience, even little kids can make the hike from the public parking lot up to the ice on their own. Peer down into blue ice fissures – but use caution, people have been known to fall into crevices.
  Cathedral Mountain and The Spirals – Pull over and walk out on the observation platform. The railroads are still the backbone of Canadian commerce so you may well catch sight of a enormously long freight train threading through the mountain tunnels so that it seems broken into two or three pieces.
    Drive up to Edith – That's Mt. Edith Cavell, south of Jasper. A winding road (about 40 minutes from Jasper) will bring you within sight of the Angel Glacier. Leave your car and, in sturdy shoes, hike the trail right to the glacier. Along the way, stop to read exhibits about the area, plenty of places for picnics. 
  Pitch a tent – There are ten campsites in the park, with almost 2,000 campsites, so no matter what your family thinks is the "ideal" camping experience, you're bound to find it here. You can camp in wilderness areas, or close into Jasper. In the summer, Parks Canada presents outdoor theatre programs and you can also sign-up for guided day hikes or backcountry trips.
    Miette Hot Springs (Fiddle Valley) – These are the hottest hot springs in the Canadian Rockies. There are two hot pools here, plus a cool pool as well, all supervised by lifeguards, but accessible only in the warmer months. Bring a picnic and make a day of it, taking time to follow the "Pocahontas Trail" (a self-guided trek to the mining ghost town) or up to Ashlar Ridge for a spectacular view.
    Ski – Yes, yet another ski resort. Well, what did you expect in the Canadian Rockies? Marmot Basin is famous for long, long runs and the competition from, not other skiers but elk and deer. Discounted tickets for kids (under 6 are free!). Click here for details on lift tickets, etc. 
      Tip: Place names tell many stories, and learning them will help you learn a lot about what was important to early settlers: Mt. Athabasca (Cree for "where there are reeds")  Mt. Edith Cavell (honoring a British nurse executed in WWI for helping allied prisoners escape) Mt. Kerkeslin (Stoney Indian word for wolverine) Mt. Henry MacLeod (a surveyor who searched for railway passes) Roche Miette (French intrepretation of the Cree word for bighorn sheep: "myatuck,") Samson Peak (the Stoney who first drew a map to Maligne Lake) are just a few.
travel for kids | canada | alberta | canadian rockies | jasper national park
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