Banff Cascade Valley Trail

Alberta Canada: (RTAB06)

Alberta Canada
A true western heritage experience in the stunning Banff National Park.

Horseback riding can truly bring you closer to nature than ever, amidst the peaceful solitude and incredible beauty of the Rocky Mountain back-country! Here you will learn all about the lifestyle in the West as the cowboys will guide you through Banff National Park, the photographer's haven of the Canadian Rockies. These pack trips take fellow adventurers deep into the heart of the rugged  North American wilderness to explore some of the most spectacular landscapes.  Soak up amazing views of Stoney Creek and Flint's Park as you trot through the wilderness, keeping an eye out for deer, elk, and moose. In 6 unforgettable days, you’ll venture past grassy ridges, charming meadows and tranquil rivers – spots where elk and deer are easy to see.

The clanging of the dinner bell each night will bring all to our delicious ranch-style meals in the giant kitchen tent. The coffee is always on and kept hot on the wood stove, ready and waiting! The camps you’ll be staying in go far beyond rustic. Curl up in an A-frame canvas tent set on a raised wooden platform and listen to the sounds of the forest as you drift asleep. In the morning, freshen up at the wash stand (complete with hot water) and then enjoy a meal prepared for you in the giant kitchen tent. The horses, chosen especially to meet your needs and experience, will win you over with their charming personalities and amaze you with their  versatility and trail abilities. You will no doubt form a  "partnership" during your ride and come to respect your new friend immensely!  The trails lead to the overwhelming views of Elk Lake Summit and Cuthead Viewpoint; the open valleys on the Passes of Elk Lake, and the captivating wildlife in Dormer Trail. The historic elk corral or wild goat trap should provide you with plenty of opportunities to see the abundant wildlife -  most commonly the elk, deer, bighorn sheep, goats, eagles  -  and capture them all on film! And if you are lucky, your may also get the occasional bear or timber wolf sighting! The riding is casual, with plenty of breaks and leisurely picnic lunches. Lunch breaks also lend you time for some exploring on foot, fishing and even a well deserved snooze in the tall grass!

We are also pleased to offer a number of exciting and educational interpretive trips each summer featuring leading authorities on wildlife, photography, mule-manship, the Banff National Park!


This is a pack trip so nights are spent tenting in 3 different campsite locations.

Each camp is set up with heated A-frame heated canvas tents on raised wooden platforms with padded cots (no need to being your own mattresses). Large cozy kitchen tents  provide a place for meals and socializing. Rail corrals keep the horses contained and happy.  Simple luxuries abound such as wash stands and hot water, and even heated tarp tent showers, make for cozy accommodations. Rivers flow nearby for the fishermen or brave swimmers. We have a generator at all camps in case you need to charge phones/ batteries. There’s plenty of table space inside too, including room for card games when the sun goes down.
- Each campsite is surrounded by an electric fence that keeps curious critters out
- Outhouses, which are meticulously cleaned, can be found at every camp
- Crystal clear water is supplied by nearby glacial streams, which is then filtered for drinking
- Kick up your feet next to the community fire pit and swap tales about the day’s ride

Accommodation Itinerary - subject to changes
Night 1 & 2: Stoney Creek
Night 3 & 4: Flint's Park
Night 5: Mystic Valley Camp

Stoney Creek
Life at camp is simple, yet comfortable. It is a rustic, yet well-equipped camp that is shadowed by the jagged peaks of the Palliser Mountain Range and you will always be able to hear the gentle murmuring of the nearby Stoney Creek. At night, we will gather around in the main kitchen tent, which acts as the communal hub of the camp.

Flint's Park
Surrounded by the limestone cliffs of summit ridges, the valley features alpine wildflower meadows and rockslides inhabited by marmots and pikas.

Mystic Valley Camp
This place is true to its name. The branches of old growth pine and spruce trees are draped in thick moss, giving the place a mystical – almost eerie – ambience. It’s set along the banks of 40 Mile Creek, which leads back towards Banff.

Room Occupancy
The single supplement fee applies if we are unable to find another rider to share.
Triple occupancy is not possible for this trip.

All meals from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on the last day are included in the trip.

Both camps are fully catered and include live-in cooks, who all love to show off their backcountry culinary skills. They will cook up a feast of hearty, homemade cowboy cuisine for you. Coffee is always on and kept hot on the wood stove. Gather inside the big kitchen tent to dine on succulent steak or chicken.

Limited wine and beer is available for purchase.

Dietary Restrictions
Although we can cater to some specialty diets, we do not cater specifically to vegetarian diets.  There are always plenty of meat-free options available. However, we do not offer a “vegetarian” main course. 

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.


Riding Experience
With about 300 horses in our stables, we’re able to pinpoint the absolute perfect horse for any rider. That means if you’ve never been riding before, we’ll be sure to pair you with the most mild-mannered horse available so you can enjoy the experience. Both beginners and experienced riders are welcome to enjoy the beauty of the trails!
You will learn to “trust your horse” as these sure-footed beasts carry you safely down even the most difficult backcountry trails. Our horses are steady, responsive and can be counted on to cross any terrain, from forest paths to boulder-strewn creeks. One of the aspects of our tours that past guests rave about is the deep connection that they form with their hooved companions. At the end of the trip, you will have a new four-legged best friend.
You don't need to assist with tacking up the horse, your guide will do everything for you. If you would like to learn, please ask! Tack is western only and the horses are neck reigned.

Each of the trips includes approx. 4 - 6 hours of riding each day. We ride for approx. 2 ½ to 3 hours in the morning, stop for lunch on the trail and ride another 2 ½ to 3 hours in the afternoon. The rides are all done at a walk in order to take full advantage of the scenery and wildlife viewing and due to the rugged mountain terrain of the region!

For every 6 riders we’ll have 1 guide. 

July is generally the busiest month, with the Stampede in Calgary.


Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Day 1: Backcountry ride to Stoney Creek Campsite
The adventure begins at Warner Stables at 8:30am. For those with a vehicle, free parking is available at the stables for the duration of the trip. Slickers and saddlebags will be handed out if required.
A separate string of mules will deliver your belongings to the camp for you so that you can ride unencumbered. When you arrive at camp, your “duffel” will be waiting for you so that you can grab it and settle into your tent.
Once you are all checked in, we will take you by van to the very fringe of the front country (the trailhead corral at Mount Norquay) to meet your friendly guide and the trusty horse we have specially chosen for you. This is the launching point to heading completely off the beaten track into Banff’s wildest places that most tourists will not get to see, and our first ride gives you the chance to settle into your saddle and start to bond with your horse.
You will pass through the cool, craggy peaks of Brewster Mountain and Cascade Mountain (with a lunch stop along the way), then head down into Stoney Creek Camp. This historic camp was named by the First Nations people and is deeply historically and culturally significant. It is only day one and you are already more deeply immersed in the backcountry than most Banff visitors will ever get.
Life at camp is simple, yet comfortable. In the evening, we will gather around a crackling fire to watch the stars and share stories. Then, it is time to curl up in your sleeping bag in your canvas tent with cot, heater and thermarest and get some sleep – the adventure has only just begun.
Riding approx. 12 miles
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in tents at Stoney Creek Campsite

Day 2: Day Ride up the Dormer Pass Trail
Today, we ride toward the headwaters of Stoney Creek up the Dormer Pass Trail, with lunch enjoyed on the trail part way through the day. The Dormer Trail area is a favorite haunt of Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep, who are often grazing in the high meadows, providing many opportunities for pictures. We will then return to Stoney Creek Campsite where you can freshen up with a hot shower and tuck in to another delicious dinner prepared by the on-site cook.
Riding approx. 11 miles
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in tents at Stoney Creek Campsite

Day 3: Ride to Flint's Park Campsite
After breakfast, you will mount up in the fresh morning air and ride the 10 miles to Flint’s Park Camp, with a stop for lunch on the banks of Cascade River. This stunning camp is one of the highlights of the trip, located in the fertile valley bottom with an open, grassy ridge providing sweeping views of the awe-inspiring Rocky Mountains.
Flint’s Park Camp was one of the original outpost areas used by the wardens as a base for patrolling in the early days of the park. Due to the wide-open terrain, it is likely you will spot some wild creatures wandering around. It is located within the Bison Free Range Zone, a totally unspoiled region where herds of Bison have been reintroduced recently for the first time in 140 years.
There is no cellphone reception way out here, which is a blessing. It is so rejuvenating to escape from the constant pinging of notifications and the pressure of your to-do list and just sit quietly in nature. At night, take a moment to look up and notice how many more glittering stars you can see out here far from the city lights. Then, curl up in your warm tent and enjoy the blissful quiet of the forest.
Riding 10 miles
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in tents at Flint’s Park Camp

Day 4: Explore the area near Flint's Park Campsite
Whether you are a hiker or photographer this area has a lot to offer. You could ride along the valley bottom amidst the wildflowers, birds and butterflies or climb high above the tree line – no matter which direction you ride in you will be surrounded by some of the most incredible scenery in Canada.
This camp is the jumping off point for many different rides into the backcountry, each more spectacular than the last. Your guide will create a customized ride for your group, tailored to your interests and experience. This ensures that your adventure is a bespoke, VIP experience that is just right for you. At the end of the day, you will return to the familiar camp to relax and chat around the campfire once more.
Riding approx. 12 miles
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in tents at Flint’s Park Camp

Day 5: Ride to Mystic Valley Camp
On our last morning at Flint’s Camp it is time to say goodbye to this stunning campsite but the trip is far from over! Once saddled up, the ride from Flints Park to Mystic Valley is a highlight of the trip and can include Rainbow Lake, the stunning 40 Mile Pass, Vermillion Range which runs to the east and Sawback to the west. Before we set off, guests have the opportunity to observe the historic art of horse packing, using the famous diamond hitch. When everything is securely in place, we ride to Mystic Valley for the final night. Along the way, you will stop for a lakeside lunch enjoying the tranquil beauty of Rainbow Lake. It is traditional to have a real western dinner to celebrate the last night at the camp. Time to kick your cowboy boot heels and have a wind-up get-together.
Riding approx. 8 miles
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in tents at Mystic Valley Camp

Day 6: Return to Warner Stables
Arise early and say goodbye to your pristine backcountry surroundings – it is time to head back into Banff and rejoin civilization. Most of our guests are reluctant to leave the isolated, tranquil beauty of this off-the-beaten-track spot.
On the last day of your Rocky Mountain backcountry adventure, you will mount up for the leisurely 9-mile ride along 40 Mile Creek, with a lunch stop along the way. This scenic ride is the perfect time to reflect on everything you have experienced in the last 6 days.
You will have plenty of wild Banff backcountry stories to tell and you will have earned the bragging rights to say that you spent 6 days deep in the Canadian Rockies. The shuttle will be waiting at the Norquay Corral to take you back to Warner Stables for approximately 5pm. Here you will say goodbye to the new friends with whom you shared this unforgettable adventure into the wild.
Riding 9 miles
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch

Rates and Dates for Banff Cascade Valley Trail

Rates include:

Camp accommodation, All meals from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on last day & 6 riding days
Saddle bags can be requested ahead of time for free
Helmets are provided

Packages and Options

  • SeasonYearDescriptionCan$ ~US$
    20216 day wilderness tenting trip, APCan$2220$1735
    • Single supplementCan$300$235
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 0.78

GST (VAT): 6% (12% for Canadian Resident) * prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy
    GST (VAT) 6% (12% for Canadian Resident)

Transfer and Other Charges:

2021 Meet at the stables for 8:30am on Day 1

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2021 06/21 - 06/26 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 06/23 - 06/28 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 06/25 - 06/30 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 06/28 - 07/03 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 06/30 - 07/05 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/02 - 07/07 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/05 - 07/10 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/07 - 07/12 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/09 - 07/14 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/12 - 07/17 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/14 - 07/19 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/16 - 07/21 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/19 - 07/24 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/21 - 07/26 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/23 - 07/28 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/26 - 07/31 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/28 - 08/02 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 07/30 - 08/04 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/02 - 08/07 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/04 - 08/09 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/06 - 08/11 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/09 - 08/14 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/11 - 08/16 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/13 - 08/18 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/16 - 08/21 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/18 - 08/23 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/20 - 08/25 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/23 - 08/28 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/25 - 08/30 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/27 - 09/01 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 08/30 - 09/04 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve
A 2021 09/01 - 09/06 6d / 5n 6 day wilderness tenting tri... 3 /20 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Transfers, Travel/medical insurance (mandatory), Gratuities, Taxes & Sleeping bag (can be rented)


Due to COVID-19 Corona virus pandemic and certain travel restrictions we are applying some temporary policy changes to some of our tours.

For Banff - Cascade Valley Trail (RTAB06):

We have suspended our tent trips for 2020 and 2021 to better focus on our lodge operations.

At this point, our management team is working on solidifying the details for 2021. As for safety protocols, there is extra sanitization and guests are required to wear masks in public areas of the lodges. We will likely be operating very similarly to how we did for summer 2020 and will consult with Alberta Health Services to ensure we are operating as safely as we can!

In case you cannot attend the trip due to travel restrictions, it is possible to postpone your trip to a later date as long as we are notified at least one month in advance.


  • Physical Distancing Measures at the Stables
  • Two metre physical distancing measures inside the barns, and only guests from the same household group will be permitted inside at any time.
  • Directional floor markers located inside the barns to encourage a one-way traffic flow.
  • Entry signage to educate guests on the maximum amount of people allowed in stables and physical distancing measures.
  • Other transmission-reducing tactics include a plexiglass barrier at the check-in desk and personal protective equipment for staff.

Hygiene and Sanitation Protocols at the Stables

  • Entry signage to explain health and safety measures and a hand sanitizer unit for customers to sanitize hands before entering the barns.
  • Helmets, reins and saddles will be disinfected after each use.
  • A regular cleaning/disinfection schedule for high touch points including the check-in office, washrooms, hand washing stations and staff room.
  • New policies and procedures for staff hygiene and loading/unloading protocols.
  • Employee temperature checks and screening.

Measures at the Lodges

  • Two metre physical distancing measures in place for communal areas.
  • Entry signage to explain health and safety measures and a hand sanitizer unit for guests to sanitize hands before entering the lodges.
  • Meals will be served individually rather than family-style dining.
  • A regular cleaning/disinfection schedule for high touch points including washrooms and door handles.
  • New policies and procedures including staff hygiene and loading/unloading protocols.
  • Employee temperature checks and screening.


For more information please visit our COVID-19 Updates page at

Other Info
Meeting: Stables in Banff for 8:30am
Airport: Calgary International Airport (YYC)
Transfer: --

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Source: NOAA

It is no coincidence that visitor activities available in Banff National Park are as varied as the park's climate. A year in Banff National Park would give a visitor a taste of everything in terms of weather and recreation. The summer sees sunny, warm days for such things as horseback riding, hiking, biking, camping, and climbing. The winter brings crisp, snowy days for tracking, skating, and alpine and nordic skiing.
The relative dryness of the air in Banff, however, makes even extreme temperatures more bearable.

Likely the most reliable characteristic of the weather in Banff National Park is its variability. The weather at one point in the park may be quite different from that of other points relatively near by. At one specific location the weather can vary considerably from year to year, and from day to day, so be prepared!
Even if it is warm and sunny, always take rain gear and a sweater. You might need them by the time you reach your destination.

The weather can also change dramatically throughout the day. The dryness of the air causes temperatures to vary considerably from night to day. The temperature on a summer night can drop to a few degrees above freezing even if daytime temperatures climbed into the upper twenties (80's F).
Vacationing in such a variable climate means thinking ahead and having a sense of adventure!

What To Bring:
Below is a list of items you NEED to bring with you. We have had many years of personal experience dealing with Mother Nature up here, so please take our list to heart.

Average Temperatures

 Month/ High/ Low
June 19C / 66F 5C / 41F
July 22C / 71F 7C / 45F
August 22C / 70F 7C / 44F
September 16C / 60F 3C / 38F

These are average temperatures at an elevation of 4,538 feet. Temperatures will drop at higher elevations.

When packing your gear, keep in mind it is being packed out on a mule and our animal’s comfort is very important to us. By following these guidelines you can help us ensure that we’re taking care of all our animals.

What to pack your gear into
You must pack your gear in soft-sided, cloth or nylon bag. It can not have any hard edges, frames or wheels. Your gear is restricted to a total maximum weight of 30 lbs (sleeping bag and your luggage). If you do not have a water-resistant bag, it is a good idea to line the inside with garbage bags in the event of rain. You may pack your sleeping bag separately from your other gear. Saddlebags, rain gear and other essentials that you will need during the day (camera, sunscreen, bug spray, lip balm, extra sweater, water bottle, etc) that you are taking on your horse with you are not included in the 30lb weight restriction.

Daypacks, backpacks or other bags are not allowed, but your rain gear will travel with you on the horse and your guide will help you attach it to the saddle. If you would like to bring saddlebags please fill them with only those essential items that you would need during the day. Fanny packs (a small pack that ties around the waist) also work well. We have a limited supply of saddlebags available free of charge which are available for pick up upon check-in (sorry, no earlier).

The length of your trip will alter what you need to bring. This list is ideal for a 6 day trip.

Essential Items
1. Bags/luggage – Waterproof bags are the best option. Drysacks, favoured by canoers, or a gym bag lined with garbage bags work well.
2. A warm sleeping bag — We recommend a bag rated to -15 degrees Celsius or 5 degrees Fahrenheit. You may not need it, but it sure comes in handy if you do. A favourite  cowboy trick for extra warmth is to tuck a flannel sheet or non-bulky blanket inside your sleeping bag.
3. A warm coat — Essential to ward off chilly nights or a windy day. Also bring a heavy sweater (wool is a great insulator) or fleece jacket.
4. Rain gear — A rain coat and rain pants, and if possible, coverings for your boots and hat. Please DO NOT bring rain ponchos, they flap in the wind and can scare the horses. If you have one, we recommend a slicker. We have a limited supply of full-length slickers (traditional cowboy rain coat) available. These are available for pick up upon check in based on a first come first served basis. Clothing that is easily layered works the best. You can always remove what you don’t need, but you still have it just in case. Also, bring your most comfortable gear — this is not the time to break-in new boots or a new hat.
5. Shirts – long sleeve and t-shirts to your preference and length of trip.
6. Jeans – a cowboy classic. Also important is a pair of long underwear for chilly nights.
7. Riding boots — A boot with a heel that can easily slip in and out of stirrups. Alternatives would be a narrow style of hiking boot or solid sneaker. For safety reasons, clunky hiking boots are not recommended. Water (rain) resistant boots are recommended.
 — or an extra pair of shoes for wearing around camp, an extra pair of DRY socks is also recommended.
9. Toiletries — towel, facecloth, biodegradable shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, disposable razors, etc. Please note that we do not have any electricity at the camps. WE SUPPLY TOILET PAPER AND HAND SOAP AT ALL CAMPS.
10. Hat — A cowboy hat offers the most protection from the elements. Baseball caps or canvas-type hats are also fine. Please ensure that your hat fits snug or ties on and will not blow off in the wind. Chin straps are recommended. If you prefer to wear a riding helmet, we have them available upon check in on a first come first served basis.
11. Gloves — Lined leather or suede gloves provide protection from the elements and a sure grip on the reins (bring two pair just in case one gets wet).
12. Scarf — A silk or cotton scarf is recommended for extra warmth.
13. Sunscreen— sunglasses and mosquito repellent.
14. Your camera – extra batteries.
15. Flashlight — Remember to check your batteries!
16. Liquor – Our camps are licensed and offer a small selection of beer and wine for sale
17. Cellular phones do not work in the areas you’ll be riding in so leave them somewhere safe. If you will be using the camera on your phone, please note there is no charging station in the backcountry.
18. Water bottle – for refreshment while you are riding. You will be able to refill your water bottle at each camp.
19. Saddlebags – You are welcome to bring your own; We do have saddlebags available at check in. Please fill them with only those essential items that you would need during the day, such as lip balm, your camera, sunscreen, etc. We reserve the right to limit the amount of gear in the saddlebags for weight. Daypacks, backpacks or other bags are NOT allowed — they are hard on your back and hard on the horse’s back, and do not tie properly to the saddle.
20. Cash – you may want to bring some cash to purchase liquor or leave a gratuity for your cooks. You can also use credit cards to purchase liquor.

How To Make Bed Roll
Lay out your canvas tarp on the ground. Lay your thermos in the middle of the tarp with the air valve pointing to the top of the bedroll (open the valve so that the air will escape as you roll). Line your sleeping bag with a flannel sheet or extra blanket. Place your closed sleeping bag in the middle of the tarp, on top of the thermos. Put a pillowcase in the middle of your sleeping bag. (Once you are ready for bed, you can use your warm coat inside the pillowcase as a pillow). Fold one side flap of the tarp over the sleeping bag. Fold in the other side of the tarp over the sleeping bag. Fold the bottom flap over and start rolling towards the top of the sleeping bag. Once you are near the head of the sleeping bag, reach in and close the valve on your thermos pad. Fold in the top flap of canvas tarp and finish rolling. Using a rope with a slipknot, tie the bedroll securely.

Equipment Rental
Equipment Rental email Bactrax/Snowtips at, for information regarding sleeping bags/liners, luggage bags etc. Located at 225 Bear Street, Snowtips offers a convenient rental service. They are open from 8am until 8pm, and would love to receive your inquiries. If you would prefer to contact them by telephone, they can be reached at (403) 762-8177, or fax at (403) 760-6289.