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Western Canada Travel

As a tour guide, I visit many popular destinations in Canada.  Having seen so many wonderful parts of Canada, I would love to share my own favourite top 3 of western Canada travel destinations with you. Here it is.

On this page:

  1. Be amazed at the Sockeye Salmon Run in the Adams River, British Columbia
  2. Visit ‘Ksan Historic Village and Museum in British Columbia
  3. Hike Parker Ridge in Banff national Park, Alberta

Related pages:

Find great road trip itineraries and city trips for British Columbia

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Western Canada travel  # 1 - Sockeye Salmon Run at the Adams River
British Columbia

Every October, spawning Sockeye salmon return from the Pacific Ocean to the Adams River, British Columbia. And what an incredible view it is!

Looking at the numbers, there is a 4-year cycle in the Sockeye salmon run at the Adams River.

  • 2018 marks a special peak spawning year. This occurs only once every 4 years. The river will run wild and crimson as millions of sockeye salmon return to their home waters.
  • 2019 will be a subdominant year where there will be over 100,000 returning salmon.
  • In 2020 there will ‘only’ be hundreds of sockeye returning to spawn.
  • In 2021 you will be able to see over 10,000 returning sockeye salmon.

Best location to view salmon at the Adams River
Tsútswecw Park (formerly known as Roderick Haig-Brown Park).
The indigenous word “Tsútswecw” (pronounced choo-chwek) translates to ‘many rivers.’ 

This provincial park is located on both sides of the Adams River, between Adams Lake and Shuswap Lake.  From Hwy #1 at Squilax, between Kamloops and Salmon Arm, the access is 5 km on paved roads.

Best time to watch the salmon run at Adams River

Western Canada Travel # 2 – ‘Ksan Historic Village and Museum
British Columbia

Take a guided tour at ‘Ksan Historic Village; a replica of an ancient Native village of the Gitxsan Nation.
A visit always gives me goose bumps from emotions.

  • ‘Ksan Historic Village shows you how the Gitxsan people have lived for centuries and possibly millennia.  This is a place where you can learn and experience the traditional way of living of the ancient Gitxsan Nation.
  • 'Ksan is run by the local Gitxsan Nation. The Gitxsan people make every effort to pass on their ancient culture and old traditions to the next generations.
  • Aboriginal culture has declined enormously since the first European contact and by visiting
    Ksan you can make a difference in its survival.

Please visit  'Ksan’s website for more information.

Where is ‘Ksan Historic Village and Museum located?
‘Ksan is located on the banks of the Skeena River 290 km/180 miles east of Prince Rupert and 60 km/45 miles west of Smithers on Highway 16. Follow the signs about 7 km off Highway 16.

Best time of year to visit ‘Ksan Historic Village and Museum
Visit ‘Ksan April to September for a guided tour.

Western Canada Travel  # 3 - Hike Parker Ridge, Banff National Park

Starting at an elevation of 2,000 metres/6562 feet, a short steep trail leads to a stunning view of the Saskatchewan Glacier.  Your effort will be rewarded!  On top of the ridge, continue another 500 metres to the left.
Here you will see the Saskatchewan Glacier and the impressive path it left behind when retreating, in full glory.

Snow-capped peaks and glacial carved valleys surround this dramatic landscape.
When I was up Parker Ridge, I had to sit down for half an hour, 10 minutes to rest and 20 minutes to indulge myself in a spiritual connection with nature.

Trail characteristics
Length:  5 km/3.1 miles return
Difficulty: moderate
Duration: 2 hours
Elevation gain: 250 metres/820 feet

Where is this Parker Ridge trail?
It is halfway between Jasper (112 km south) and Lake Louise info centre (120 km north) on the Icefields Parkway (hwy 93).

Best time of year to hike Parker Ridge
From second half of July to end of September

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