Author Topic: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip  (Read 1112 times)

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Offline seaplusplus

help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« on: October 31, 2013, 01:07:35 am »
hey so cycling has been a passion of mine for about the past 8 years or so (as of now im 22) and i enjoy a ride variety of cycling. im from saskatchewan so i only get to ride about 6 months a year, i ride 4 or 5 times a week whether its trails or the skatepark or just commuting around the city for a few hours.i probably average about 400km a summer in distance (thats not including my time riding street/trials at the skatepark or around town) i have a 4 different bikes for the different riding i enjoy.

i just found out about the ACA and the network of trails and immediately started studying them and thinking of all the places i could go on my bike. i work at a youth wilderness survival camp during the summer and its to important for me to miss.

because of winter and camp my options are limited for getting a ride on one of these trails but im fairly confident i could do banff to yellowstone national park (and back) after winter ends and be back at camp by the middle or end of june.

this is my first time undertaking a ride such as this and i will probably be doing it alone. ive never done multiday rides before and ill be out on my own for a decent amount of time. now i have wilderness hiking and canoeing experience, having led week long 100km hike groups at my camp during the summer so i know a thing or 2 about things like pacing and supplies and gear and the type of attitude one should have towards this type of interest.

so what im mostly looking for in terms of information right now and as to why im writing this post, is to get info on the route i should take, any important information about the route anyone might now about, things like gear for weather conditions or specific sites along the route that are interesting to check out.

im 22, 5' 10" 200 pounds. dont smoke or drink. id say my diet is pretty average, dont really eat junk food at all, lots of fruits and natural foods like nuts and breads.

any information that you think might be helpful would be welcomed here. id like to be able to see this from every angle. id also like to attempt this from beginning of april, till end of june, preferably be done towards the middle of june. would those be good conditions to ride in? thats basically the only time im available to do it.

i assume id be taking the great devide from banff to polaris, and then take the transamerica trail to yellowstone, and just reverse back to banff.

another question, would taking the great parks north route take me through chief mountain border pass? cause it says its only open middle of my till september,
« Last Edit: October 31, 2013, 01:31:07 am by seaplusplus »

Offline indyfabz

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2013, 11:26:16 am »
The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route would almost certainly not be an option if only due to snowpack in the north. Read this:

http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/adventure-cycling-route-network/great-divide-mountain-bike-route/

The Great Parks does go over Cheif Mountain, but there is a way to avoid it by going from Elko into MT at Roosville.

Even if you stuck to the roads, I think you would be riding a lot in cold, wet/snowy conditions with icy roads. Doesn't sound like much fun to me. I rode a paved portion of the GD route (Polaris to Wise River) a few years ago. There were still a few piles of snow along side the road and it was below 40 at night. That was at the beginning of July.


Offline mathieu

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2013, 05:34:28 pm »
Because you are living in the cold north and probably not daunted by short hike-a-bikes on small snowfields, I guess, contrary to the previous reply, that you can probably do this round trip.

I would start from Banff by mid-May on the paved roads of the Great Parks Route to Missoula (about 600 miles). From Missoula you could follow the TransAm through Yellowstone Park to Flagg Ranch (400 miles; but take half a day extra to visit Coulter Bay to see the Tetons in full majesty).

From Flagg Ranch, probably by the second week of June, you can pick up the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route northbound to Banff (1040 miles). You will meet the southbound Tour Divide racers (they start from Banff second week of June), who will give you full details about the conditions of the possibly snowed-in passes ,like Richmond Peak, Whitefish Divide, the Canadian Flathead and Elk Pass. Normally, by the third and fourth week of June, there will be little snow left.

All in all, about 2000 miles in 6 weeks, that should be do-able for an able youth. You will have the trip of your life!
See http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/?o=1&page_id=310078&v=3M

« Last Edit: October 31, 2013, 07:05:58 pm by mathieu »

Offline indyfabz

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2013, 10:17:10 am »
My reply assumed his start date of the begiinning of April.

Offline PeteJack

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2013, 01:38:31 pm »
Quote
probably not daunted by short hike-a-bikes on small snowfields,
Which is what I thought when I met this.



Then round the corner was this...


I ended up doing a 100 mile detour. The snow was soft and up to my hubs as far as the eye could see. It was in the 80s and no sign of snow at the bottom of the hill

Offline mathieu

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2013, 05:00:42 pm »
Quote
The snow was soft and up to my hubs as far as the eye could see.

Somehow the pics didn't pop up on my display.
But this possibility is exactly why I advocated to do the GDMBR on the return. It's later in the season and the southbound Tour Divide racers can report all snow and mud conditions.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2013, 05:05:35 pm by mathieu »

Offline PeteJack

Re: help on banff-yellowstone roundtrip
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2013, 08:28:32 pm »
You can see them here: on Crazyguy The last two pictures are what I posted