Great Canadian Mountain Traverse (TourzPlus™)
This trip is for those daring enough to challenge the two big mountain ranges of
Western Canada in one week. From Lake Louise in the Canadian Rockies to Whistler in the
Coast Mountains. In between you can expect challenging big climbs, unbelievably
beautiful scenery and long days in the saddle. If you are a serious road cyclists who looks forward to back to back century rides, this is the trip for you. You will ride a total of 1000k, 621 miles and you will climb approximately
11,000 meters or 35,000 feet.
Special Note: Though we have a limited number of quality, light-weight road bikes availabe for rent because of the challenging nature of this tour we recommend that you bring your own bike.
Learn more about our TourzPlus™ partner tours and how they differ from regular ExperiencePlus! bicycle tours.
Tour Dates & Prices
Aug 25-Sep 1, 2019
Prices are subject to 5% GST. Save CAD$
350 if you bring your own bike.
* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.
- Length / 8 Days
- Total Distance / 600 miles (975 kilometers)
- Avg. Distance / 82 miles per day (133 kilmeters) per riding day
- Tour Level / 5.0
- Countries / Canada
- Begin/End / Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada / Whistler, British Columbia, Canada
- Price / From CAD$2695
Challenging climbs, Plenty of adventure, Unbelievable scenery, 33,000 feet of climbing in 600 miles, Great companions
Keep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.
Long, challenging rides.
Use of a quality 27 speed bike, 8 days, 7 nights of accommodation in hotels and lodges; Meals (7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 4 dinners); Luggage transport; Support vehicle; Mechanical support; Road book and map; Guide
Arrive / Depart
Calgary Int'l Airport (YYC) / Vancouver Int'l Airport (YVR)
Overall Tour Level
Daily Ride Summary
Tour Level Note: This is a very physically challenging itinerary if the mileages look daunting have a look at our other Canadian tours.
**We use Ride With GPS (ridewithgps.com) to calculate elevation and mileage information. Due to variance between mapping technologies, totals may differ slightly across devices and applications
DAY 1: Arrive the day before the tour in Lake Louise.
Highlights: From Lake Louise to Sunwapta Falls 111 miles (185 kilometers)
If you fly into Calgary there are plenty of commercial shuttles to Lake Louise. From the Bow Valley over Bow Pass into the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Then climb up Sunwapta Pass, ride past the Columbia Icefield and descend to Sunwapta Falls.
DAY 2: From Sunwapta to Mt Robson 99 miles (158 kilometers)
Highlights: Cross the Continental Divide
In morning we ride through the beautiful Athabasca river valley in Jasper National Park, then we climb gently across the Continental Divide at Yellowhead Pass. At the end of the day you get to spend the night in the shadow of the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, Mt. Robson.
DAY 3: Mt Robson to Blue River 83 miles (135 kilometers)
Highlights: The Cariboo Mountains
Through the North Thompson River valley and through the Cariboo Mountains to Blue River. You will get a good sense of the remote wilderness of Northern British Columbia with it's big mountain scenery. At the end of the day you will be rewarded with luxury lodging at Mike Wiegele's famous Heli-Ski resort.
DAY 4: Blue River to Little Fort 83 miles (135 kilometers)
Highlights: North Thompson River Valley
Along the mighty North Thompson River we will encounter bears, salmon and have a good chance of spotting moose. Today we will enjoy a recovery day with many fast flat sections with great river views.
DAY 5: Little Fort to Clinton 100 miles (160 kilometers)
Highlights: The Cariboo Wilderness
A long, steep morning climb of 12k (7.41 miles)with grades between 8-10% takes us onto the Caribou Plateau. Then we enjoy a roller coaster ride through the Cariboo wilderness and it's many lakes. Keep your eyes open for bears, moose and deer.
- Distance: 161 km (100 mi)
DAY 6: Clinton to Lilloet 66 miles (108 kilometer)
Highlights: Canyonlands of British Columbia
Today we will emerge from endless forests, first into open ranchlands, then descending the semi-arid canyonlands of British Columbia's largest river, the mighty Fraser. You can expect a spectacular canyon section ending in Lillooet.
DAY 7: Lilloet to Pemberton 62 miles (100 kilometers)
Highlights: Coast Mountain Range
From the Fraser Canyon into the forbidding wilderness of the Coast Mountain Range. This stage is extremely scenic but with the steepest grades of the trip also very challenging. Several hours of uphill riding take us to turquoise blue Duffy Lake, with spectacular glaciated peaks in the background. Afterwards the longest and fastest descent into the Pemberton Valley awaits.
DAY 8: Pemberton to Whistler 20 miles (32 kilometers) and shuttle to airport
Highlights: Mission Accomplished!
The finale of this trip takes us to the ski resort of Whistler where we will celebrate the end of our journey. We will arrive around noon and the shuttle to the airport in Vancouver takes 2 1/2 hours.
Mostly Flat Terrain
Mostly flat terrain has just a few rolling hills that rarely require you to change gears. It might contain a bit of climbing, but those climbs will be short and at a very gentle slope with little need for increased pedaling or downhill breaking.
Rolling hills refers to multiple gentle slopes (3-4% grade) with minimal need for changing gears or increasing in pedal power. Elevation gain should be less than 100m per hill and braking may not be necessary to control speed on downhills.
Hilly terrain has repeated hills and some of them may be require more pedal power as it has steeper inclines (up to 5%). You will change gears throughout the day and braking may be necessary to control speed on descents.
Very hilly terrain includes multiple hills on your ride, some of which can be steep or long climbs. You will change gears and need to use your brakes to control speed on your descent.
Mountainous terrain includes one or more sustained (more than 5km) climbs with frequent steep grades (over 7%). Mountainous rides may also feature multiple steep grades (greater than 6%) for extended periods of more than 5km. You will need to shift gears and brake on descents to control your speed.
Level 1 - 1.5 Rating
Based on today's distance and elevation gain (or lack thereof), it will be a very comfortable ride for beginner cyclists, those traveling by bicycle for the first time, or multi-generational groups with a desire for a nice and easy bike tour with plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the scenery.
Level 2 - 2.5 Rating
Based on today's distance and elevation gain, this day is ideal for riders newer to bicycle touring looking for a bit of a challenge, or for individuals who desire shorter days on the bike. You will likely be riding on rolling terrain.
Level 3 - 3.5 Rating
Based on today's distance and elevation gain, we suggest riders spend some time in the bicycle saddle before joining this tour so they you can enjoy the views at the top of some of the climbs you'll face.
Level 4 - 4.5 Rating
Based on today's distance and elevation gain, this day is best described as a great day on the bike for passionate cyclists or very active individuals.
Level 5 Rating
This day is not for a casual cyclist but for riders looking to push their limits. Suffice it to say your delicious meal at the end of the day will be well earned!
These are the definitions...
Level 1 - 1.5
- Average Daily Mileage: 15-30km (10-20 miles)
- Gain: 0-400m (0-1200ft)
- Terrain: Mostly flat with occasional gentle climbs at a grade of less than 3%, that are sustained for a maximum of 3km. There might be a steeper but short climb.
Level 1 tours will be mostly flat and daily distances will rarely exceed 30 km. Level 1 tours are suitable for beginner cyclists, those traveling by bicycle for the first time, or multi-generational groups with a desire for a nice and easy bike tour with plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the scenery.
Level 2 - 2.5
- Average Daily Mileage: 30-50km (20-30 miles)
- Gain: 400-600m (1200-2000ft)
- Terrain: Mostly rolling terrain around 3%. Presents multiple 3% to 4% climbs. May present an occasional steeper climb.
Level 2 tours are a great option for those new to bicycle touring looking for a bit of a challenge, or for individuals who desire shorter days on the bike. The average mileage on level 2 bike tours is 30-50 km on mostly rolling terrain. There will be multiple climbs at 3-4% grade throughout the tour, but only an occasional steep climb.
Level 3 - 3.5
- Average Daily Mileage: 50-70km (30-45 miles)
- Gain: 600-900m (2000-2800ft)
- Terrain: Multiple Climbs with grades of 4 - 6%. li>
Level 3 tours are for active individuals (who run, bike, swim etc. on a regular basis) with the desire to cover longer daily distances on the bicycle. These tours are a great workout when you’re riding as you will average 50-70 km daily with total gain of 2,000-2,800 ft. There will be multiple 4-6% climbs throughout the tour.
Level 4 - 4.5
- Average Daily Mileage: 70-90km (45-55 miles)
- Gain: 900-1000m (2800-3600ft)
- Terrain: Presents multiple steep climbs (6% to 8% grades), 1 to 3km long. Alternatively, 4 – 6% grades for 6 kilometers or more. li>
Level 4 tours are for passionate cyclists or very active individuals. This level tour is great for cyclists looking to stay in shape and pedal hard they travel across regions or countries. Level 4 tours cover 70-90km daily with 2,800-3,600 ft of gain. Cyclists on a level 4 bicycle tour can expect multiple climbs, some climbs might be short and steep (6-8% for 1-3 km) while others may be sustained (6+ Km) at a 4-6% grade.