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Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Bear, Delaware
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Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

We are planning to stay a night at Revelstoke on September 6, tour the road and then head on to Yoho and Banff later in the day. At this point, how does it look like about the possibility seeing any remaining wildflowers at that time ? This might help us decide whether to go as far as Revelstoke or skip it. We are stretching our drive a bit longer than we would like.

Jasper, Canada
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1. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

I have never driven the Meadows in the Sky parkway, but the climate and mountain conditions there are not that different from here in the Rockies, so I assume the timing of the flowers there is similar to here. In early September, it's already autumn at higher elevations, and there may already have been frost. Some flowers are already beyond their bloom time (peak is mid-July to mid-August), but there are always stragglers. That time of year can also be very pretty, with the fall colours of shrubs and other vegetation.

Bear, Delaware
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2. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Thanks, krp. I was looking for specific information for this year based on how early or late the flowers are blooming over there as I have read that in some years first week of September could still have a handful.

Jasper, Canada
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3. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Things are blooming early, in general. Winter and spring were mild, all over western Canada. There are always various flower species that bloom until the plants are killed when we get a really hard frost, so it's the night-time lows that will determine how many flowers will still be blooming in September. I would say you are guaranteed more than a "handful", unless we have some kind of unusual much-colder-than-normal weather.

Bear, Delaware
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4. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

That makes sense. I do have bookings at various places for that night, so I could at least wait until 3 days to go to see if there is such a stretch of cold weather before our visit and then decide. Or may be flowers or no flowers, it will be worth visiting! We are staying in Deer Lodge for the next three nights. I read elsewhere that you worked there at one time. I am trying to decide between Deer Lodge, Mountaineer Lodge ($40 higher per night) and Douglas Fir Resort (same price as Deer Lodge) in Banff. Each has pros and cons regarding conditions, facilities, location etc. Any thoughts ? I should probably ask that in the Rockies forums..

Edited: 08 July 2016, 05:09
Calgary, Canada
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5. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Deer Lodge and Mountaineer Lodge are in Lake Louise and Douglas Fir is in Banff. That alone is a fairly significant difference -- the two are about 45-60 minutes apart.

Banff is much larger with a wide variety of food, shopping and entertainment options. Lake Louise is a tiny non-residential village comprised of hotels, a handful of shops and a hostel. Plus a few non hotel restaurants. We generally suggest Banff for those looking for more variety in food/shopping, while Lake Louise is an ideal location if your focus is on hiking.

Deer Lodge is one of two (three, perhaps) hotels that are within walking distance of the lake. That can be a real bonus since traffic & parking have become a major issue at Lake Louise. You can simply park your hotel at the car and walk to the lake & the trails that lead up from the lake. However, you then would need to drive to any restaurants other than at Deer Lodge or the Chateau Lake Louise.

Mountaineer Lodge is down in the "village", so you have a few other dining options within walking distance, plus the shops in the "mall". I think both offer good value. I've not stayed at Mountaineer (heard positive things about it), but have stayed a number of times at Deer Lodge. I like Deer Lodge - it's in a historic building, but that means the building is old, so it's not for everyone. No elevators, and in the old building, the plumbing can be a bit temperamental, and they really do need to go a good refresh of the paint/wood/etc in the halls and parts of the rooms. But it's cozy, well appointed rooms with comfy beds, good food and pleasant service. Plus the hot tub with the best view in Lake Louise.

Douglas Fir seems to get good marks in terms of self catering accommodations, and being Banff, rather than Lake Louise, you probably get a bit more for the same price. It would certainly be walkable to most things in Banff.

Bear, Delaware
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6. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Thank you, ksneds. I am considering all of those factors you mentioned. Ultimately it will come down to what we prioritize. We won't be hiking a lot with a toddler, but as you mention, there are other advantages to staying in Lake Louise. Parking is one. Easier sunrise/sunset photography at the two lakes is another (for me personally). Shaving off driving time for the drive in from Revelstoke and drive out to Jasper is another factor. My wife is picky about clean accommodations and bathrooms in particular -- if it is old but clean, she won't have a problem with it in Deer Lodge. The other two do have better amenities like free breakfast/refrigerator/microwave (handy with keeping milk for toddler and snacks) and in case of Douglas Fir, kitchenette as well.

Jasper, Canada
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7. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

Yes, I did work at Deer Lodge, for three summers back in the 70s and early 80s, when I was a university student. (I remember polishing all that wood wainscotting in the hallways, LOL) Back then, it was still owned by the family who had established it, first as just a tea house, in the 1920s, and it was a rustic hotel that was only open in summer, the cheapest place to stay in Lake Louise. It was then quite past its prime - the second generation of the family operation were getting on and ready to retire. None of the third generation were involved with the business and It was ultimately sold to a large company in the 80s, who renovated and winterized it. I have stayed there a couple of times since then, but not recently - it's been about ten years or more. The building still has a lot of charm, but it is old and idiosyncratic, with stairs and creaky floors ... it's not your standard modern hotel. The location is incredible, though, especially if hiking is part of your holiday plans.

This TA article compares the various locations where you can stay in the Rockies - Banff, Lake Louise etc. https://www.tripadvisor.ca/Travel-g154910-c1… But for further details on each of the hotels, you should read through some of the reviews for each property.

If you have further questions about the Alberta Rockies, it would be best to start a thread in the "Canadian Rockies" forum.

Just as a matter of interest, I note that this Revelstoke forum has been placed under the "Kootenay Rockies" region, however, Revy is not in the Rockies at all, but in the Selkirks, part of the Columbia Mountains.

Port Moody, Canada
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8. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

KRP I was wondering about that Revelstoke location! I saw that earlier today and thought "what happened here?" as I was certain that Revelstoke wasn't in the Kootenays!!!

Guess we need to try and get TA to look at a map? LOL

fwiw friends stayed at Deer lodge for a night in late May and loved it...quirky yes, comfortable, yes.

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

I think Trip Advisor use a different approach to geographical locations. See what they include in the South Pacific forum for example. And Saint-Pierre et Miquelon which used to be in the NL and Labrador Forum is now in the North America parent forum. But there is no NA forum to find.

They don't have a Selkirks forum which wouldn't even come to the table. The drop down in the Kootenay Rockies forum shows: Nakusp, Trail, Kaslo, Nelson, Castlegar, all the Arrow Lakes and Slocan Valley locations. TA's classifications don't exactly match with real geography. Although they do have an Okanagan Valley Forum and Bella Coola Valley Forum under BC. Not sure how they decided on this KRF one. Normally a forum is created when someone submits a request for a new listing. If approved, TA then use the official address to decide where it will go. But someone has looked at all these locations as a group and said, Yep, Kootenay Rockies sounds good.

10. Re: Meadows in the sky wildflowers in September

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