Has anyone taken their PUP through the Canadian Rockies?

Discussion in 'Campground / Trip Planning & Suggestions ?' started by cowboy11753, Aug 14, 2013.

  1. cowboy11753

    cowboy11753 WD, SCJ and HRH Charles the Furball

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    We're thinking of a big road trip next summer and wondering if it's practical to plan a trip south to north through the Canadian Rockies towing our PUP....worrying specifically about how many steep grades, etc. plus also wondering about grizzlies etc.? And maybe also about severe weather? Has anyone done this trip in a PUP?
     
  2. timothias

    timothias New Member

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    I haven't traveled the rockies with a PUP, but I live close to them on the AB side. The grades can get bad depending on what highways you take. Make sure you are not towing anywhere close to your weight limits, and make sure you have functioning brakes on the trailer, and a transmission cooler for the TV is a must.

    As far r weather, it's in predictable. You will want to be prepared for everything.

    And don't worry about grizzlies any more that you would normally be bear smart. The Alberta Parks website has some really good material on preventing bear issues.

    I suggest you go. The Canadian Rockies are phenomenal and life changing. I would suggest paying a visit to Banff and taking the Ice Fields parkway to Jasper (or vise versa if you wanted to do it on your way back).
     
  3. Jimbow

    Jimbow Well-Known Member

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    I just returned from the Rockies through Colorado and Wyoming. I am glad I have electric brakes ( or are we spelling it breaks now?). I also had new tires on the pup. You have to be able to tolerate narrow roads with no shoulders and couple thousand foot drops.

    Bear protocols mean no food or cook gear in your pup. No eating or drinking in your pup. No toiletries, makeup, toothpaste, etc in your pup.

    What else would you like to know?


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
  4. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    I've camped many times in tents, canvas PUPs and my TrailManor in the US and Canadian Rockies. It's beautiful! But, as Jimbow says, don't try it without trailer brakes and be sure to follow the bear smart rules.
     
  5. BigBaron

    BigBaron Dreaming of Tommy's chili cheeseburgers...

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    As long as your brakes don't break, you'll have a nice break from the stress of daily life. Be sure to take a break every now and then to make sure your brakes aren't broken. That way you won't break anything going down the hill because your brakes broke.
    That's it. I can't think of anything else... [LOL]
     
  6. cowboy11753

    cowboy11753 WD, SCJ and HRH Charles the Furball

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    It's nice that we have so many witty folks on the forum - love the puns....

    It turns out that we caught a break and our TV came with a tow package including electric brakes. Thank you for asking.

    These were handy coming back through Wyoming and Utah (who knew the Mormons had such steep hills) on the 10% grades. We don't mind a little downhill action, but when it goes on for 10 miles at a crack, it gets a tad old.

    So, I guess our question is: Do the roads through the Canadian Rockies have significantly more 8% plus grades than the US Rockies? Also, are there fairly constant ups and downs through passes or did the roadbuilders look for the route of least resistance? Looking at the map, Route 93 would seem to be the road of choice and we could do day trips from the CGs.....

    Just hoping to get a flavor for what we might expect.

    Thank you all for your guidance on this!
     
  7. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Yes.

    If you're in the mountains expect lots of ups and downs, long grades, short grades, steep grades and side winds on many grades. Give your brakes a break by downshifting to lower gear on the long downhill grades.
     
  8. pej

    pej Member

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    We traveled through the Canadian Rockies with our 2001 Palomino, a Chev Venture and 5 people on board (three kids). Driving through the passes are amazing, but steep. I do not recall the grade. We did not have any troubles on the way west (through Golden) as it was rainy and cooler, but on the way back east it was 90+ degrees. Again, we had no problem braking on the downhills, but the engine started to overheat on the uphill climb. It was the Crowsnest Pass.
    We turned off the A/C in the van and opened the windows, but the temp guage kept climbing. I remembered a tip the bro-in-law passed on to me... We turned up the interior car heater temp and fan speed to max and pointed the vents towards the open windows, basically using the interior heater as a secondary radiator. The temperature gauge dropped like a rock and we were back to normal engine temperature in no time.
    Keep it in mind - it does work.

    I would highly recommend the trip. It is amazing country. Definitely camp at Banff National park for a few nights. The camp fees are higher at the national parks, but when you realize everyone else staying in Banff is paying $250 to $500 a night it is easier to swallow! The mountains, Okanagan valley, Vancouver, Victoria and Cathedral Forests (absolutely huge trees) are all amazing. If you make it to Vancouver Island head to Tofino. We did it as a day trip and I was glad I was not towing a trailer.

    For us the whole trip west return was 8100 miles, 29 days, 21 setups.

    Enjoy.

    Peter
     
  9. cowboy11753

    cowboy11753 WD, SCJ and HRH Charles the Furball

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    Thanks UT - we did downshift (the TV is an automatic, darn it - not as much control as a stick) on all steep grades, but still had to use the brakes extensively....a couple of times we finally pulled over just to give the brakes a rest (and us).

    PEJ - Thank you for the tip re turning on the heater full blast - who knew?? We do turn the A.C. off but never heard of the heater trick.....

    Your description of the Canadian Rockies makes us want to leave now.....but will plan it for next year for sure....

    Definitely want to see Tofino - we were on the Island last year but time constraints made us save it for another time....everything I've read makes it sound wild and wonderful! Also, it probably would have cost us a mortgage payment to take the rig on the ferry....that being said - I LOVE the ferries - everyone so relaxed and pleasant.....and a cheap trip compared with most other methods of conveyance.....

    Thanks again to both of you...
     
  10. fallsrider

    fallsrider Active Member

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    In my dreams...does that count? :D

    Sent from my ADR6400L using Tapatalk 2
     
  11. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    When visiting Banff NP in Alberta I recommend Johnston Creek as a campground. It is FCFS and very reasonably priced. Plus, for $C8.80 more a night you can have all of the firewood you want. It also has rest rooms with hot showers and dish washing stations (hot and cold running water). It's centrally located between Banff town and Lake Louise, too. Here is our campsite from our last visit four or five years ago.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. cowboy11753

    cowboy11753 WD, SCJ and HRH Charles the Furball

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    Wow, does that ever look nice - I can smell the pine needles from here and can hear the wind in the tree tops - thank you for the recommendation....
     
  13. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    One other thing you'll hear is the CN trains that run through the Bow Valley. They never mention that in the brochures. But, it's not just Johnston Creek, it's pretty much the whole park. It's a small price to pay for so much beauty.
     
  14. californiasgirl

    californiasgirl New Member

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    We just got back.

    Yes! Gorgeous place. Do it! We didn't go as far north as Jasper, though. I don't remember the driving being any more difficult than south of the border. The worst downhill we did was coming into the Grand Teton's from the west. Vancouver Island is stunning. Be prepared for expensive ferries, though.

    I've posted some pictures and information about our trip here: http://www.popupportal.com/index.php?topic=75812.0

    Two Jacks Lakeside was a beautiful campground in Banff---just arrive super early if you go!
     
  15. BigBaron

    BigBaron Dreaming of Tommy's chili cheeseburgers...

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    I was just feeling mischievous. [:D]


    This is such a great thread! I wanna go there! UT is a treasure trove of knowledge.
    I found that the tow button on our Ford class C rental downshifted automatically on downhills. I barely had to touch the brakes anywhere. In my other cars, I usually just turn off overdrive.
    How did you control speed? Shift down from drive?
     
  16. jennyzichterman

    jennyzichterman New Member

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    For those of you who have traveled the Icefields Parkway, would pulling the pup to Jasper be a problem on the Icefield Parkway? I could leave the pup behind and spend one night in a hotel in Jasper before returning to Banff.

    Thanks for your advice!
     
  17. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    No, it would not be a problem at all -- in summer -- but you wouldn't want to camp there in winter anyway. The road is just like any other highway.
     
  18. Aliladavies

    Aliladavies New Member

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    You are going to love your trip!
    I've traveled this area my whole life and still haven't seen nearly enough. Nor does it ever get old :)
    We live in Kelowna so if you decide to hit the Okanagan valley you wouldn't be disappointed either. Amazing lakes, hot weather and of course it's superb wine country ;)

    I'd be happy to offer suggestions if you ever need any! Happy planning :)


    Okanagan, BC family with 2011 Flagstaff Classic 425D
     

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