September is the perfect time for a getaway. Resorts are less crowed, the weather is still warm during the day and the plants and trees are just changing to their brilliant fall coats of red, orange and gold.
Our Cowboy Trail & Waterton Lakes tour takes us through dramatic scenery as we travel over the Rogers and Kicking Horse passes and through Glacier, Yoho and Banff National Parks to reach our Alberta neighbours. After a night’s stay in beautiful Canmore, we travel through Kananaskis Country where magnificent peaks provide a dramatic back drop for journey. From here, we drop down into the foothills and Alberta’s cowboy country. This is the heart of Alberta’s cattle country and where the Canadian cowboy was born. Did you know that the highway we follow in this area, Highway #22, is also called the Cowboy Trail? The Bar U Historic Ranch will be our first stop along the Cowboy Trail. The Bar U Historic Ranch is still a working ranch and our interpreter will provide a glimpse into its past, present and future.
Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, a UNESCO heritage site is one of world’s oldest, largest, and best preserved buffalo jumps in North America. Our site guide will explain the importance of the buffalo to the Blackfoot Indians. A lunch of buffalo stew represents the historical cuisine of the area and is sure to delight even the most discerning palate.
Travelling to cowboy country would not be completed without attending a traditional barn dance! The Great Canadian Barn dinner and dance combined with the music of the Kunkel clan, whose members range in age from 18 to 81, will charm you with music and tales of the area.
Transportation in days gone by was the horse drawn carriage. Cardston, Alberta is home to the Remington Carriage Museum and the largest collection of horse drawn vehicles in North America. Enjoy walking among the carriages and picturing your ancestors travelling across prairie roads with no heaters or air conditioning. And yes, of course we included a carriage ride!
Beautiful Waterton Lakes National Park is our next stop. Known the world over for its spectacular setting, hiking and canoeing, the park borders the United Sates and Montana’s Glacier Park. In 1932, the two parks joined and became the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, the first international parks collaboration in the world.
Time to soak and relax in Fairmont’s Hot Springs is a great way to end your travels and arrive home refreshed and ready to plan your next Wells Gray Tours journey.
Written by: Joan Niemeier