The Canadian Rockies are Canada’s greatest natural heritage. They are grand, beautiful, majestic, alluring…pick the adjective. If you are looking for a place to experience real fun, then there is no better place in the world. The Canadian Rockies Mountains consists of the following Parks:
- Banff National Park
- Jasper National Park
- Kootenay National Park
- Yoho National Park
- Mount Robson Provincial Park
- Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park and
- Hamber Provincial Park
The parks also include mountains, canyons, limestone caves, glaciers and hot springs and the headwaters of major North American river systems including:
- North Saskatchewan River
- Athabasca River
- Columbia River
- Fraser River
The mountains are southeastern-northwestern oriented and are nestled along the continental Divide that consists of Western Ranges, Front Ranges, Main Ranges and Foothills – all of these are well represented in the parks.
Noteworthy for the visitor is the still active glaciers and ice fields in the Main Ranges with the most important being the North America’s largest subarctic ice field – the Columbia Ice Field – which covers 325 square kilometers and straddles both Jasper and Banff National Parks.
The flora diversity here is as intense as in the other Canadian National Heritage Sites. The forest cover will be found at the altitude of 1200 meters to 1800 meters and include species such as Douglas fir, poplar, aspen, white spruce etc. On the Alpine altitude of 1800 meters to 2100 meters, you will find the low growing vegetation such as willow and dwarf birch, mountain avens, sedge and heath.
56 species of mammals are to be found in this region. They include; the Rocky Mountain goat, hoary marmot, bighorn sheep as well as carnivores such as grey wolf, lynx, puma, wolverine, black bear etc. There are also the 280 species of birds that include; golden eagle, rock pipit, grey jay and many more
As a tourist in this region, you will have more than your full share of adventure. From sports such as skiing, cross-country skiing, horse sleigh riding, dogsledding and many more winter sports to such fun activities as hiking, bathing in hot water springs and even golfing; the Canadian Rocky Mountains Parks is one of those places you visit over and over again without exhausting the fun.