Select Traveler

MAY-JUN 2017

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20 selecttraveler.com M A Y / J U N E 2 0 1 7 In the promenade directly behind the lodge, kids were constant- ly getting on lifts with mountain bikes. In the summer months, they careen down the mountainside, hitting banked curves for thrills and speeding down straightaways like they're late for supper. "Whistler would be the odd man out for most tours," said Warren. "They are first and foremost a skiing destination. Most tour companies are concentrating more on Jasper, Lake Louise and Banff." The lodge is spacious and open, with a busy bar in the back. Out- side, a patio overlooks a swimming pool and a miniature golf course. The pool was busy, even though the temperatures were in the mid-70s. For Southerners like us, it seemed too cool for pool time, but the other guests were getting their money's worth. We took the incline up the mountain to ride the Peak to Peak Gon- dola, the world's longest unsupported tram, between Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. Along the way, we watched a black bear make its way down a trail about 300 feet beneath us. We made it back down for a great dinner at the Rim Rock Café. We left Whistler early in the morning because the drive to Jasper was the longest of the trip. Driving in the Canadian Rockies is not time wasted. There is nowhere that isn't scenic. We stopped for a late breakfast at the Rugged Bean Café in Lilliooet, British Columbia, and had an outdoor lunch at a local drive-in in Clearwater. JASPER: SCENIC AND SERENE Jasper Park Lodge is the least pretentious property of the four Fair- mont hotels in the region. The sense we got was that this family retreat in Jasper National Park has been visited by generations of families for decades. These folks probably don't care if anything ever changes. The rustic lodge has a great bar off the back with windows overlooking the lake and golf course. I sat there one day and watched Jordan Spieth win the U.S. Open. "The lodge at Jasper is a bit outdated," said Warren, "but their oc- cupancy level is very high, so it doesn't seem to matter much. A cruise on Maligne Lake is a must in Jasper. It's the most beautiful lake in the Rockies." I played the resort's historic Stanley Thompson golf course with two Chinese businessmen from San Francisco. Somewhere on the back nine, I looked up and noticed a huge bull elk foraging just off our tee. We all took photos from a distance, but then one of the men got Poolside at Fairmont Chateau Whistler Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge cabin The incline at Fairmont Chateau Whistler Breakfast at Fairmont Chateau Whistler Bing Crosby was a regular at Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge.

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