Jasper Tramway, Jasper National Park
If you’re looking to get out and above Jasper National Park, you’ll want to check out the Jasper Tramway, which will take you up The Whistlers, one of Jasper and the Canadian Rockies most scenic and accessible summits.
From the town of Jasper, The Whistlers is hard to miss. It’s the large, rounded mountain that dominates the skyline. To get to the top quickly, just jump on The Jasper Tramway.
Long time Jasper resident Stephen Nelson likes to say that, “If you’ve got only one day in Jasper, the one thing you must do is go up on the tramway.”
“You can see all of Jasper from there,” he says. “You can see all the way down Ice Field Parkway, you can see Mount Robson. You can really see an amazing amount of the park, especially on a clear day.”
The tram ride begins at an elevation of 1304 metres (4279 ft) above sea level in the safety of an enclosed Tram cabin. The tramway’s fully trained and knowledgeable tour guide will accompany you during the smooth seven minute trip to the Upper Station located at 2277 metres (7472 ft) above sea level.
During your ascent up Whistlers Mountain a tour guide will inform you of the area, points of interest, animal life and history as well as answering questions.The chalet perched on the top is the upper terminal of an aerial tramway that ascends 960 metres in seven minutes.
The excursion to the top takes you through the park’s three life zones beginning with the montane, the open-forested Athabasca Valley bottom where most of Jasper’s large animals live. As the cable car ascends over 1350 metres above sea level, the vegetation changes into dense, thick forests of Englemann spruce and fir called the subalpine. At the upper terminal, the barren mixture of rocks, stunted trees and small, delicate plants is called the alpine lifezone, home of the “whistling” marmot and camouflaged ptarmigan.
The alpine is Jasper’s most fragile life zone. Extreme conditions mean that only certain plants and animals can survive, and only if they remain undisturbed. Please be careful to stay on designated trails and refrain from picking or disturbing any plants or feeding any animals at the top of The Whistlers.
Also, as you are asending into the high alpine, it is smart to bring extra clothes in case of sudden weather changes.