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Journey to Dog Friendly Jasper

And now … we bring you the conclusion of our series, “A Dog Friendly Tour of the Canadian Rockies.”

Everyone we told about our trip to the Canadian Rockies said we had to go to Jasper. Apparently a lot of visitors stop at Banff and Lake Louise rather than traversing the 144 miles up the Columbia Icefield to see this ruggedly beautiful resort town. Once again, the advice we received from our fellow travelers was spot-on! If you’re coming this far, do not leave without spending some time in Jasper.

Bow Lake

The drive up the Icefields Parkway is worth the trip all by itself. About 35 miles up the road is Bow Lake, the source of the Bow River. From here you get a great view of the Crowfoot Glacier and can hop on the 2.2-mile trail back to Bow Glacier Falls.

Bow Lake - Alberta Bow Lake - Alberta

Columbia Icefield

About half way between Lake Louise and Jasper is the Columbia Icefield. It’s not pet friendly, but they have tours from here that will take you in a massive vehicle up to the glacier so you can walk around. This is the best place we found if “experience a glacier” is on your bucket list.

Columbia Icefield - Alberta Columbia Icefield - Alberta

Jasper

This town has a unique personality – definitely a tourist destination, but with a sensible, frontiersy feel about it. The restaurants and pet friendly hotels in Jasper were packed at the end of August, and the sidewalks were lively with folks taking advantage of the fine end-of-summer weather. Spending time in the outdoors is the main form of entertainment – for good reason – though you’ll also find shops, spas, museums, and galleries in town.

Jasper, Alberta Jasper, Alberta Jasper, Alberta

They’ve even recently added a nice, big dog park near the RV parking lot downtown, which Buster and Ty were quite happy to find.

Off-leash Dog Park - Jasper, AB Off-leash Dog Park - Jasper, AB
Off-leash Dog Park - Jasper, AB

Just watching him fetch makes me tired!

Lake Annette

Jasper is a great base for many of day trips in the area. One of our favorite things to do was drive across the river the walk the path around Lake Annette. I’m sure you’ll understand why …

Lake Annette - Jasper, AB Lake Annette - Jasper, AB Lake Annette - Jasper, AB Lake Annette - Jasper, AB Lake Annette - Jasper, AB Lake Annette - Jasper, AB

Miette Hot Springs

In an interesting juxtaposition with the snowy mountain peaks, we found a plethora of hot springs in the Canadian Rockies! Though they’re not pet friendly, we drove up to check out the Miette Hot Springs – more for the scenery than the pools.

Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB

This is the welcoming committee hanging out in the parking lot …

Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB Miette Hot Springs - Jasper, AB

And we saw this big boy on our way back to Jasper …

We later learned his name is Albert and he’s quite a celebrity for posing along the highway for the tourists.

Albert the Elk - Jasper, AB Albert the Elk - Jasper, AB

Maligne Lake

No trip to Jasper would be complete without a visit to Maligne Lake. You can rent a canoe (they’re pet friendly!) and have a paddle up the lake or stick to the land on one of the trails. Two of the five marked trails welcome pets on leash and  we had no trouble finding enough places to walk the boys. When they were good and tired popped them in the car for a snooze and took a boat tour up the lake to world-famous Spirit Island.

Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Spirit Island at Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB

On the way back to town, these ladies were in the road. I think this one likes the camera!

Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB Maligne Lake - Jasper, AB

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  • Great tips, Karen! Thanks so much for your note, and waggin’ trails to you.

  • My husband and I travelled to Jasper area in 2014 and found thtat you can take the gondola to the top of the mountain and take your pet with you. They provide free muzzles and require them for all dogs, the ticket lady told us but when we went to get one, the man at the gondola said, oh, not for such a cutie–we were travelling with our older, very calm mini doxie at the time. Its a lovely trip, take the gondola to the top, hike around and take one back. We did some camping so she was welcome there and there is a very nice hotel in Hinton that is pet friendly. Also I always ask and find that sometimes places that might say no, will say yes. We have been travelling with our dogs since I was a kid and I am in my 60’s now! Its so much fun!

  • I remember the ice field area being pretty remote, Maryann, so I guess it’s not too surprising that there isn’t a pet sitter nearby. I’m glad that you were able to enjoy the sites with your pups!

  • No, the nearest doggy day care is in the town of Jasper. I took my dogs up onto the icefields though and no one stopped me……

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