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Icefields Parkway Photo Diary – Alberta, Canada

Icefields Parkway Photo Diary – Alberta, Canada
Icefields Parkway Photo Diary – Alberta, Canada

Being from the flat state of Texas, I was so excited to go to Canada to see ALL the mountains. I was even stoked to make the 5 hour drive from Calgary to Jasper to see all the amazing scenery. It ended up being around 6 hours because we stopped to take pictures about 50 times (#worthit). The sights along the way did not disappoint and the pictures really speak for themselves. Below are a couple of our favorites and places we specifically sought out on the journey.

To be honest, we got insanely lucky when we made this drive. The week before the weather was crazy with multiple snowstorm and the roads and views were trash. Luckily, when we went, a week later, the roads had been cleared and we got to see the beautiful snow. We had been complaining the entire week that winter came early and it was snowing but by the time we were driving and seeing the amazing views, we were so glad for the snow. It was breathtaking! We learned the weather in the Rockies can be super unpredictable so there isn’t a good way to plan, we planned for 50 degree weather and go 30 degree weather.

That being said, the Icefields Parkway is a must-see! It was rated one of the most beautiful drives in the world and all I can say is fuck-yeah it is! One thing that I wasn’t expecting were the designated photo spots, they kind of sneak up on you so be ready to turn off and make that split second decision. But they are totally worth it! We missed the first couple and had to double back around. Drivers on this road are use to tourists stopping off on the shoulder to take pictures so it’s fine. But it’s always safer to pull off into the paved parking lots and out of the way of traffic.

First, a little background on the Icefields Parkway. The major highway between Calgary and Lake Louise is the Trans Canada Highway, or Highway 1. It’s a standard two laned highway that has a fence around the perimeter to keep out wildlife. After you get past Lake Louise and head north the next town is Jasper, 4 hours away. The highway between Lake Louise and Jasper is called Icefields Parkway. It’s a mountain highway so it’s not always cleared after a major snowstorm or ice storm and includes steep hills because you’re literally winding through the mountains. Because of this, there is zero cell phone service so make sure you fill up your gas tank at Lake Louise just to be safe. There are various hikes and pit stops on the Parkway such as, Peyto Lake, Sunwapta Falls, and the Columbia Glacier. All these stops are definitely worth it but most are close to either Jasper or Lake Louise so you can do them another day.

Mountain Views

Bow Lake 

Saskatchewan River Crossing

Tangle Falls

Red Earth Wildlife Overpass

I know that’s a lot of photos but we took over 1,000 photos so I did well at weeding out the bad ones.

Additional Tips for Driving the Icefields Parkway:

  • Check the road conditions ahead of time at
  • Make sure you have Winter tires, it’s a requirement if you plan on driving on the Parkway.
  • Get a national park pass at
  • Fill up your gas tank at Lake Louise.
  • Bring lots of water and snacks, there are plenty of rest stops with bathrooms but there is nowhere to buy food and water.
  • Bring a map, GoogleMaps only works in certain areas and completely goes dead at times. I bought this one off Amazon.
  • If you’re from the US, call your auto insurance to make sure you’re covered in another country.

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