Banff Lodge Ride - 3 days

Alberta Canada: (RTAB17-3)
URL: http://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/ab_banff_lodge_rides_3.aspx

Introduction
Alberta Canada
Rugged mountain scenery and an abundance of wildlife.

That’s what you’ll find on the 3-day Sundance Explorer ride. And when the sun sets, you’ll be relaxing in pure backcountry comfort. Cowboy style.

This adventure takes you along the glacier-fed waters of the Bow River, one of the best spots in Banff to spot elk, deer or even moose roaming along the shores. Follow the historic Storm pack trail, travelled by renowned explorer Erling Storm in the early 1900s, while taking in awe-evoking views of the Sundance mountain range.

At night, the cozy Sundance Lodge gives you a surprisingly comfortable spot to rest your head. Snuggle by the fire, devour gourmet backcountry cuisine and swap tales about the day’s adventures with your fellow riders.

Accomodation


Accommodations
Both nights will be spent at Sundance Lodge. There are no sleeping bags or camp stoves here, you will be sipping from wine glasses, dining on food prepared by a skilled chef in a professional kitchen and sleeping in a comfortable bed. Your lodge host will cater to your every need and make you feel welcome, like you are a guest in their home.

Description
The lodge is the perfect balance of comfort and authenticity – giving you the Wild West Explorer feeling without having to rough it. Completed in 1991, Sundance Lodge now sits on the original site of the horse corral for Ten-Mile cabin, built by Canadian Pacific Railway back in the 1920's. The cabin itself remains standing and was declared a historical site in 1990. It was used as a refuge for mountain guides and packers traveling to Mount Assiniboine, whose names you can still see carved into the logs. Sundance Lodge sits alongside a gentle curve on Brewster Creek, with the Sundance mountain range as a backdrop. Built entirely with fir logs, the lodge has 10 sleeping rooms (choose your own basis), a large country kitchen, and a cozy living room area where you can curl up by the wood stove and lose yourself in a good book for the cooler nights or the porch for warmer nights. Private sleeping arrangements are possible depending upon trip size, but are not guaranteed. The lodge can hold up to 34 people.
The cabin does not have WIFI, so you can really unplug and enjoy nature.

Amenities
-10 sleeping rooms with ~3 single beds per room
-Coat hooks, lantern, small desk, chair, beds, and bedding, in each room
-Kitchen and living room
-2 indoor washrooms and heated shower (one shower per stay)
-Solar-powered and heated by burning wood

Room Occupancy
The single supplement fee applies if we are unable to find another rider to share.



Meals
All meals are included in this trip from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on the last day. Backcountry cooks prepare sophisticated, hearty meals from braised beefshort ribs and Creme Brûlée Cheesecake on one night, to grilled salmon with bumbleberry pie the next. 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


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.

Pace
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.

Itinerary

3-day Sample Itinerary- subject to changes

Day 1: Backcountry ride to Sundance Lodge
Your adventure begins at 9:30am at the backcountry check-in at the large barn at the stables (please do not arrive any earlier than 9:30am). There is plenty of free parking at the stables and you are welcome to leave your vehicle here during the trip. Once you are checked in, you will meet your professional and friendly guides and get your slickers and saddlebags. Things happen on “Western Time” here so we may not leave right on the dot and you’ll have time to get to know your horse and ask any questions before you set off.
Once you and your horse are ready to go, we will mount up for the 10-mile ride along the banks of the sparkling glacier-fed Bow River, Brewster and Healy Creeks. We will stop along the way for a hot lunch on the riverbanks, then late afternoon we will arrive at Sundance Lodge. This elegant and luxurious lodge offers you a chance to experience the Canadian backcountry, while relaxing in comfort. You will arrive to a hot cup of tea or coffee, a warm shower, a soft bed and the friendly greeting of your lodge host. Each host has a way of making the lodge their own, catering in your every need and cooking you delicious meals.
Riding approx. 10 miles
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Sundance lodge


Day 2:  Day ride in the backcountry
Cuddled in your cozy bed at Sundance Lodge, you will wake up to the rays of the morning sun streaming in through your window. After a hearty breakfast, you can leave your belongings at the lodge and set off unencumbered for a ride deeper into the backcountry with stunning views of the surrounding mountains. On today’s ride, you will catch a glimpse of the enormous Brewster Glacier and the rock faces of the Sundance Range as you ride along the footsteps of the original pioneers. We will stop for lunch along the trail and enjoy an open-air picnic in this unforgettable setting. At the end of the day, you will return to your familiar room at Sundance Lodge, where you already feel comfortable and at home. As the sun sets behind the mountains, you can sit back on the deck and relax, drink wine and share stories and photos with your fellow adventurers.
Riding approx. 6 miles
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Sundance lodge


Day 3: Return to Warner Stables
Sundance Lodge is an island of comfort and elegance in an ocean of wilderness, a place where you can admire the rugged beauty of the backcountry while wrapped in soft blankets and sipping from a mug of hot tea. It is your last morning at Sundance, which is starting to feel like home thanks to the warm hospitality of your host. Be sure to take a few last photos to capture the moment as you prepare to hit the trail again. Wave goodbye as you and your horse saunter back to Warner Stables. It is another gorgeous full day of riding through wooded hillsides and winding river trails with the soaring craggy peaks of the Rockies as a backdrop. You will refuel with a lunch stop along the banks of Healy Creek, where we will enjoy sandwiches, fresh-baked goodies and fruit. We will arrive back at approximately 4:30 pm.
Riding approx. 10 miles
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch


------------

2-day Sample Itinerary- subject to changes

Day 1: Backcountry ride to Sundance Lodge
Your adventure begins at 9:30am at the backcountry check-in at the large barn at the stables (please do not arrive any earlier than 9:30am). There is plenty of free parking at the stables and you are welcome to leave your vehicle here during the trip. Once you are checked in, you will meet your professional and friendly guides and get your slickers and saddlebags. Things happen on “Western Time” here so we may not leave right on the dot and you’ll have time to get to know your horse and ask any questions before you set off.
Once you and your horse are ready to go, we will mount up for the 10-mile ride along the banks of the sparkling glacier-fed Bow River, Brewster and Healy Creeks. We will stop along the way for a hot lunch on the riverbanks. We will arrive at Sundance Lodge late afternoon, where your lodge host will greet you. Sundance is the ideal place for those who want to marvel at the beauty of the Banff Backcountry, while still being swaddled in comfort. There are no sleeping bags or camp stoves here, you will be sipping from wine glasses, dining on food prepared by a skilled chef in a professional kitchen and sleeping in a comfortable bed. Your lodge host will cater to your every need and make you feel welcome, like you are a guest in their home. Settle into your room and freshen up from your day on the trail, then gather around the table for a gourmet meal and an evening of conversation. By the end of this trip, you will have plenty of new friends from around the world.
Riding approx. 10 miles
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Sundance lodge


Day 2:  Return to Warner Stables
After a deep and restful sleep in the peaceful quiet of the backcountry, you will awake to a hearty breakfast and a steaming mug of coffee. You will have the entire morning to wake up slowly and savor your time at this picturesque lodge. Sundance was built in 1991, near the original Ten Mile Cabin built in 1923 where the trail riders used to stop and rest on their way to Mount Assiniboine. (Ten Mile Cabin is still there and Sundance Lodge sits where the corral would have been.) With no emails to answer or errands to run, your time is your own. You can sit on the deck, get lost in the pages of a good book, have a chat with your horse or get to know your fellow adventurers. We will begin our ride back to Banff in the late morning. You will bring along handmade sandwiches for the journey, as well as fresh-baked goodies and fruit. You will return to the stables at approximately 4:30 pm, with plenty of stories to tell about your adventure in the backcountry.
Riding approx. 10 miles
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch


Rates and Dates for Banff Lodge Ride - 3 days

Rates include:

Overnights in a backcountry lodge, all meals from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on last day, 3 riding days on the 3 day trip.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionCan$ ~US$
    A
    20193 day lodge ride, AP (3 riding days)Can$1050$890
    • Single supplementCan$160$135
      Discount for 3rd pax in same room, pp(Can$40)($35)
  • B
    20192 day lodge ride, AP (2 riding days)Can$680$580
    • Single supplementCan$80$70
      Discount for 3rd pax in same room, pp(Can$20)($15)
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 0.85

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:



 Description
2019 Meet at the stables for 9:30am on Day 1

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
B 2019 07/27 - 07/28 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 07/29 - 07/31 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 08/03 - 08/04 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 08/05 - 08/07 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 08/10 - 08/11 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 08/12 - 08/14 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 08/17 - 08/18 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 08/19 - 08/21 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 08/24 - 08/25 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 08/26 - 08/28 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 08/31 - 09/01 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 09/02 - 09/04 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 09/07 - 09/08 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 09/09 - 09/11 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 09/14 - 09/15 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 09/16 - 09/18 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 09/21 - 09/22 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
A 2019 09/23 - 09/25 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Expired
B 2019 09/28 - 09/29 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Sold Out
A 2019 09/30 - 10/02 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Reserve
B 2019 10/05 - 10/06 2d / 1n 2 day lodge ride, AP (2 ridi... 1 /14 Reserve
A 2019 10/07 - 10/09 3d / 2n 3 day lodge ride, AP (3 ridi... 1 /14 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Travel/medical insurance (mandatory), gratuities, saddle bag (can request saddle bag ahead of time and it will be supplied free of charge).

Other Info
Meeting: Stables in Banff for 9:30am
Airport: Calgary International Airport (YYC)
Transfer: --

Climate:
                                                Banff area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

23

32

40

49

58

65

73

72

62

50

33

23

Average Low Temperature (°F)

6

11

18

27

34

41

45

44

36

29

17

7

Average High Temperature (°C)

-5

0

4

9

15

18

23

22

17

10

1

-5

Average Low Temperature (°C)

-15

-12

-8

-3

1

5

7

6

2

-2

-8

-14

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

5

4

5

6

7

9

8

8

7

5

4

4

Source: NOAA


Seasons
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, please keep in mind it is being packed out 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 luggage is restricted to a total maximum weight of 30lbs. 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. 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 coat and warm layered clothing: Essential to ward off chilly nights or a windy day. Also bring a heavy sweater (wool is a great insulator) or fleece jacket. 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.
3. 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 waterproof slickers (traditional cowboy rain coat) available. These are available for pick up upon check in based on a first come first served basis.
4. Shirts: Long sleeve and t-shirts to your preference and length of trip.
5. Jeans: A cowboy classic.
6. 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.
7. Sneakers: Or an extra pair of shoes for wearing inside the lodge, an extra pair of DRY socks is also recommended.
8. Toiletries: Biodegradable shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, disposable razors, etc. Please note that the lodges do not have any electricity. We supply toilet paper, handsoap, towels and face cloths at both lodges.
9. 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. Please note that riders that are 17 years and under are required to wear a helmet while on horseback on the backcountry trips.
10. 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).
11. Scarf: A silk or cotton scarf is recommended for extra warmth.
12. Sunscreen: And sunglasses and mosquito repellent.
13. Your camera : Don’t forget extra batteries.
14. Flashlight: Remember to check your batteries!
15. Please do not bring liquor: The lodges are licensed and so under Alberta Law we cannot allow self brought alcohol to be consumed. We do have alcohol for sale at reasonable prices.
16. Water bottle: For refreshment while you are riding.
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. Saddlebags: You are welcome to bring your own; 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.
19. 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.