With all the hustle and bustle often required to get from point A to point B on vacation, I sometimes have to borrow a line from a James Taylor song, “the secret of life is enjoying the passage of time.” If that phrase rings true to you and you want to sit back on your next holiday and leave the driving to someone else, while still enjoying the view, I have a secret for you. Book yourself on Rocky Mountaineer’s Journey through the Clouds, a magical two day train ride through the Canadian Rockies with scenery that will knock your socks off – but keep them on for the sake of your travel partner.
I had the pleasure of traveling by luxury train on Rocky Mountaineer First Passage to the West a couple of years ago and jumped on board at the chance to experience a Journey through the Clouds train route this spring. Our two-day scenic adventure began in Vancouver, the city of glass, ending in Jasper National Park via an overnight in Kamloops.
For the photographers among us, be you professional or amateur, you’re sure to come home with some Instagram-worthy pictures. In fact, Rocky Mountaineer hosts offer wonderful narration while guests enjoy the luxury accommodations of its GoldLeaf Service. The conductor will actually slow the train down in order for guests to “assume camera-ready position” and snap that postcard picture or record that video of your bucket list-worthy vacation. The scenic valleys, Coasts Mountains range, and Fraser River captured my attention as soon as we left Vancouver. As an avid fisherwoman, I appreciate that the Fraser River is home to British Columbia’s largest salmon run. The train also passes by Hell’s Gate, giving guests a first-hand look at the power of water and offers glimpses of scenery not accessible by car.
Our journey takes us from lake-level to higher elevations, with views of snow-capped mountains, Albreda Glacier and the grand daddy of Canada, magnificent Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies. We saw plenty of wild life, with deer, elk, and big horn sheep in picture-taking range. Graceful heron’s glided by and osprey nests were perched high in the trees. We didn’t spot any bear on this journey, but there are definitely more sightings as spring turns to summer.
Enough about the wild life and the wild scenery on board Rocky Mountaineer. Let’s talk about the gourmet food from Canada. Part of my vacation memories are about the regional cuisine that I’m able to taste along the way. Rocky Mountaineer Executive Chef Jean Pierre Guerin creates route specific menus for each train journey. I think this is wonderful, because it means that I have a unique dining experience at each destination. Chef Guerin draws his inspiration from British Columbia and the wide variety of foods available to him and his kitchen staff from the region. The crew works their magic in a tiny, yet state of the art galley.
“My job is to make sure every guest has a consistent experience,” notes Rocky Mountaineer Executive Chef Jean Pierre Guerin. “If you like tuna, you must try the Albacore. But no matter what, everything we prepare is fresh and local.”
If you like to keep the vacation going, consider adding an Alaska cruise. On this particular itinerary, I stayed inside Jasper National Park at the historic Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge. For me personally, one night isn’t enough to explore this Unesco World Heritage site. I recommend adding on an extra night or two at Jasper Park Lodge, especially if you want to go horseback riding or ride mountain bikes around the lake.
Rocky Mountaineer has carried over 1.7 million guests through the Canadian Rockies. If the secret of life is enjoying the passage of time, isn’t it about time that you let Rocky Mountaineer take care of you? Book your own Journey through the Clouds at rockymountaineer.com.
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