Guest post by Trevor Stuart
Many people have heard of the Rocky Mountains. Most people are under the impression that the Rockies are located exclusively in the United States – namely, in Colorado. However, this is untrue – it just happens to be that the part of the mountain range in Colorado is an incredibly beautiful and well known part that contains Mount Elbert, the highest peak in the entire range. A good chunk of the Rocky Mountains is located in British Columbia and Alberta in Canada. This section of the mountain range is known as the Canadian Rockies.
The Canadian Rockies extend all the way from the Interior Plains of Alberta to the Rocky Mountain Trench of British Columbia. In the south, the range borders Idaho and Montana while in the north it ends at the Liard River. Unlike the American Rockies, the Canadian Rockies are made out of shade and limestone. The following parks are located in the Canadian Rockies: Banff National Park, Jasper National Park, Kootenay National Park, Waterton Lakes National Park, Yoho National Park, Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park, Mount Robson Provincial Park, Northern Rocky Mountains Provincial Park, Kwadacha Wildnerness Provincial Park, Stone Mountain Provincial Park and Muncho Lake Provincial Park. Many of these parks, as a whole, have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Mount Robson Provincial Park
Mount Robson Provincial Park is an especially notable park due to it being the largest provincial park in the Canadian Rockies. This 2,249 kilometer park was created in 1913, making it the second oldest park in British Columbia. It is home to Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies. There’s something for everyone in this park, from easily accessible trails trod upon by thousands to pristine untouched land. There are several different types of vegetation zones, over 182 species of birds, many different types of animals and some truly breathtaking landscapes to see. You can take a day trip into the park, or camp overnight in one of the three campgrounds.
Waterton Lakes National Park
Another popular park is the Waterton Lakes National Park located in Alberta. It borders the Glacier National Park across the border in Montana. Collectively, these two parks are known as the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. Waterton Lakes National Park is a World Biosphere reserve with all kinds of different habitats such as prairie grasslands, aspen grove forests, alpine tundras and coniferous forests. Historical and cultural memorials at the park include the Prince of Wales Hotel, the first oil well in Western Canada and the Bar U Ranch.
Yoho National Park
Yoho National Park is located in between two other national parks. It is home to Mount Burgess, a mountain that is so frequently climbed that for years it was featured on the Canadian ten dollar bill. Other mountains in this park include Mount Stephen, the President, the Vice President, Mount Goodsir and Mount Balfour. There are many lakes and waterfalls in the park, including Takakkaw Falls, Emerald Lake and Wapta Falls.