Your Friday Escape:  Banff National Park

Your Friday Escape: Banff National Park

Where: Eastern Slope of the Rocky Mountains about 80 miles west of Calgary, Alberta, Canada Today’s Weather Forecast: Sunny, High: 82*F, Low: 48*F Escape the summer swelter and soak up the rugged beauty of waterfalls, jewel-toned lakes, and granite peaks. You can camp, but there’s no need to rough it here. The resort town of Banff offers charming boutiques and restaurants, and chateau-style hotels. As you head out for dinner, grab a light jacket in anticipation of a chill in the air after sunset. Sleep well, because adventure awaits! Things to do: Banff National Park offers four-season outdoor recreation. Relax in the hot springs which have drawn visitors for over 100 years. Watch for wildlife including grizzly, caribou and wolves while hiking, canoeing, fishing or cycling. For a summertime adrenaline rush, try whitewater rafting. Return in the winter to ski or snowboard, or if you’re especially adventurous, climb a frozen waterfall. Step back in time to the Old west at Bar U Ranch. Ride in a horse-drawn wagon, learn how to make butter and rope and do laundry the old-fashioned way. Special events include a chuckwagon cookoff, rodeo, trail rides and a cowboy skills competition. Facts: As told by the official National Park website[insert link]: “In the fall of 1883, three Canadian Pacific Railway construction workers stumbled across a cave containing hot springs on the eastern slopes of Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. From that humble beginning was born Banff National Park, Canada’s first national park and the world’s third. Spanning 6,641 square kilometers (2,564 square miles) of valleys, mountains, glaciers, forests, meadows and rivers, Banff National Park is one of...