While Kamloops was a part of our original travel plan, we had to tack on an extra day in the city. We also had to alter our route to get there. Snow was the cause of this. While we had hoped to not encounter any snow during our trip, that wasn’t the case has we hit the Rocky Mountains.
Our plan changed once we arrived into Jasper as the forecast had changed. On Friday, both Jasper and Banff were expected to get hit with snow. 5-10cm in Jasper and 10-20cm in Banff. This wasn’t just light flurries, this was A LOT of snow. It also meant that we had to cancel our trip to Banff which was a huge bummer for us but there was no way we could travel into that much snow. As a result, we adjusted our plan and route and made our way to Kamloops a day early.
Most days, when packing up the RV for departure, it would take us about an hour and a half. That includes eating breakfast and walking the dog. Departing Jasper for Kamloops took us almost 4 hours thanks to a snowfall that dumped about 5cm of snow on our RV overnight. This created two obstacles for us.
The first obstacle slowing us down was the fact that we had to actually brush all the snow off of the roof and slides. We had to do this so that we could bring our RV slides in without having snow come into the actual RV. The roof also had to be brushed off because we couldn’t have snow flying off the RV into traffic. While I was ready to climb the narrow ladder of our RV to brush the snow off, Kate recommended that she do it since she is more conscious when it comes to being safe. That is true. So up the ladder she went. She managed to brush off all the snow within an hour. It was no easy task but she did it.
Our second obstacle was actually getting out of the park. The grounds of the RV park were covered in snow and our path out was going to be an interesting and potentially challenging one. The people at Jasper Gates were incredible in helping us with our departure. They plowed the laneways of the park and our actual site to give us the best chance of getting out. Still, we were a bit nervous. The path out was down a steep hill and if we didn’t make the turn, there was likely no backing up due to the slippery conditions on the incline. Thankfully, we managed to trek through the slush and snow before exiting the park and meeting up with the welcomed site of the highway. Watch the video of us driving out of Jasper Gates.
The drive was as gorgeous. Although the snow was a nuisance to us early in the day during our preparations, it was now providing us with stunning views of the Rockies. The mountains & forest were covered in fresh white powder which gave us some incredible views as we made our way through Jasper and on to Kamloops.
Just like our previous days in Jasper, during our drive, we encountered plenty of wildlife. There were herds of bighorn sheep crossing in front of traffic and herds of elk laying in nearby fields. The drive from the East to West gates of Jasper couldn’t have been any more beautiful.
Upon exiting Jasper National Park, we were now in Mount Robson Provincial Park and officially in British Columbia. We made a quick stop to take some pictures and to stretch our legs before continuing on. Driving into BC was nice and similar to Jasper – for a bit. As we continued west, the landscape began to change and we no longer saw snow atop the mountain peaks. Throughout the rest of the day, we enjoyed nice views of various valleys and peaks along Highway 5. Because of our late departure time, we didn’t end up in Kamloops until almost sunset. Once we got there and unpacked, we were relieved to get there based on how the day started.
While our time in Kamloops was limited, we were able to enjoy the beautiful Riverside Park located in the downtown of the city. The park is alongside the Thompson River which provides a nice backdrop while walking the paved paths of the park. The park also features beautiful trees and gardens. It’s a pleasant place. They also had the first outdoor pickleball courts that I’ve seen in Canada. I immediately thought how much my father – the pickleball assassin – would love playing here. Bella also loved walking through the park. As we were exiting the park, though, we noticed signs that said most of the park is off-limits to dogs. Whoops. The park is beautiful and worth a visit if you’re in Kamloops, there’s a great view of the river and the nearby mountains.
Departure Time/Location: 12.30p Hinton, Alberta
Arrival Time/Location: 6.30p Kamloops, BC
Total Distance: 519km
Next Stop: Surrey