Here's my report from last week in the Banff/Jasper area. Was able to sneak away for a few climbs, so it was nice to actually work up an appetite and maintain some fitness while on vacation with the family.
Revelstoke/Meadows in the Sky Parkway: As posted above, only open to the 15 km point due to a landslide. Nothing too steep to the 15k point, I'd say comparable to Cypress. Some sections of smooth pavement, but mostly (rough) asphalt, almost washboard on the way down. No problems climbing up on 23c tires, but I'd seriously consider wider, cushier tires (28c) for descending this again. Or best of all, get a ride down.
Definitely going back at some point to ride all 27k of the climb. Great switchback climb.
Canmore: Did not make it to Highwood Pass but did a quick ride out of Canmore. Rode out to Grassi Lakes (past the Nordic Centre), then backtracked and rode part of the Three Sisters Parkway. Good out and back ride with some climbing. Windy. Bow Valley Bike Path to Banff looks fun.
Marmot Basin, Jasper: Wicked switchback climb to the ski resort. Nice wide road, asphalt but smooth and no problem descending on 23c tires. Pretty much deserted when I went up (Friday late morning). Highlights were running into a grizzly and two cubs as I was coming out of a switchback on the way up. Fortunately, a Parks truck just happened to pass at the same moment. The driver wedged right next to the mama bear and cubs so I could pass safely.
Second highlight was running into a huge wolf standing in the middle of the road, as I was descending at 65 km/h. At this point, I was glad that I had brought my cross bike, because my howling cantis scared the wolf off as soon as I grabbed the brakes. Too bad I couldn't take a picture, the wolf had distinct black/white markings almost like a Husky. Beautiful.
I didn't find much info on this climb, but it starts ascending as soon as you turn off the Icefields Parkway. Sign says 14 km, paved road ends at the ski resort. Some ramps but also two sections on the climb that actually descend for a bit. Just under 49 minutes to the top. Awesome ride and only 6 km or so from town.
Rose Hill, Kamloops: Short, uber steep and fun, and the only time I used my 34x27 gear. Was in the red and used the 34x27 for probably 90% of this climb. This was like a 4 x 5 min. interval, took about 24 minutes and change from the start of Rose Hill Road to where the pavement ends (marked by the rusty water reservoir).
Stopped hyperventilating enough to load the bike in the car and drive the remainder of Rose Hill Road on gravel. An enjoyable route and very doable on 700x35c cross tires, but the paved climb itself would be way more fun on a light road bike.
I need to figure out a way to get back to Kamloops to do this on better legs.
"The song of a bird…We used to ask Ennesson to do bird calls. He could do them. How he could do them, and when he perished, along with him went all those birds…"-Return from the Stars, Stanislaw Lem
"We just walk around, and sometimes we go out and dance, and then we listen to the environment."-Ralf Hutter, Kraftwerk