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Did you know you can experience the wonder of the Canadian Rockies from the sky? The Jasper Skytram rises high above the base of Whistlers Mountain. You can enjoy an enclosed gondola ride and additional activities at the top.
We loved it and are ready to share our experience with you! So don’t miss out on the breathtaking scenery of Alberta, Canada.
Where Is Jasper?
Jasper, Canada, sits at the junction of Highways 93 and 16 in Alberta, about 20 minutes east of the border with British Columbia. The town lies within the Canadian Rockies and is the gateway to Jasper National Park.
The Athabasca River also meanders through the town. Less than 5,000 people live here, but about two million tourists visit Jasper National Park annually.
What Is Jasper Known For?
Jasper used to be a fur trading town, but today, it’s known for Jasper National Park. Abundant wildlife flourishes in the colder, wetter climate of the rugged mountains and the warmer, drier climate of the Athabasca Valley.
The park protects grasslands and wetlands. It has various wildlife, such as elk, deer, moose, caribou, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, bears, beavers, lynx, porcupines, cougars, snowshoe hares, and more.
Jasper National Park is also known for its stargazing. As the world’s second-largest dark sky preserve, the park offers numerous locations to capture epic photos of the Milky Way.
And you generally won’t be crowded in with other stargazers since Jasper is the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies. You’ll have plenty of space to spread out and enjoy the stunning scenery.
What Is the Jasper Skytram?
One of the most popular things to do in Jasper is to ride the Jasper Skytram. The tram is located off Highway 93 at the end of Whistlers Road. It offers visitors a new perspective of Jasper National Park and its beautiful landscape.
Your ride up the aerial tramway will take less than 8 minutes, starting at the base of Whistlers Peak and traveling to about 7,500 feet. Because of its popularity, we suggest you purchase tickets at least a day ahead of time.
The History of the Jasper Skytram
William McGregor climbed to the summit of Whistlers Mountain in 1960. He was amazed and wanted to find a way for all people to enjoy the breathtaking views. Therefore, in 1963, construction began on the Jasper Skytram. A year later, it opened to the public.
The tram operates like other aerial gondola rides with cables, wheels, and an enclosed basket. A flight attendant operates the tram and points out sights along the 7.5-minute journey. Each cabin can fit up to 24 people.
Pro Tip: Before you cross the border in your RV, here’s what you’ll need to enter Canada!
How Much Does It Cost to Ride the Jasper Skytram?
Purchasing your tickets as far in advance as possible is imperative, especially when visiting in the summer. Expect long lines during these busy months even after you purchase your online ticket. Then arrive about 20 minutes before your flight time.
Day rates for the Jasper Skytram cost $59.95 for adults, $33 for youth, and $9 for dogs. Children under the age of 6 ride for free. But you can also find deals and discounts offered throughout the year.
You prepay for your tickets, show proof upon arrival, and have the difference refunded. When you book your tickets, you’ll also choose a time for your return flight.
What We Thought About the Jasper Skytram
So is the Jasper Skytram just another tourist trap? Or is it something worth doing? We really enjoyed it! It’s pricey, but you can spend hours hiking, eating, and taking in the views at the top.
We Loved the Additional Hiking at the Top
The Jasper Skytram takes you near the summit of Whistlers Mountain. If you want to hike to the summit, take the Summit Trail. You can enjoy several viewpoints along the 3/4-mile trail.
You can also hike Whistlers Trail, a 4.1-mile out-and-back route that travels down the side of the mountain. These trails provide even more opportunities to enjoy the spectacular scenery.
There Are Two Dining Options
Once you’ve hiked a trail or two, you can stop at one of two dining options at the top of the Jasper Skytram. The Summit Cafe is a full-service dining experience on the upper station’s second floor.
You’ll love the panoramic windows while you enjoy a panini, salad, burger, or bowl of soup. The Summit Cafe is open 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Basecamp Cafe is at the lower station if you just want a snack or ice cream. It’s open seasonally and serves grilled sandwiches, cookies, brownies, muffins, pretzels, ice cream, coffee, and tea.
After hiking for an hour or two, take a break at one of these two dining options and savor your time at the top before heading back down the mountain.
There Are Multiple Adventure Packages
If you’d like to combine experiences, you can choose from multiple adventure packages. Book a river rafting adventure or a helicopter flight to pair with your Jasper Skytram ticket.
In addition, High Sights Guiding has partnered with the Jasper Skytram to offer a half-day or full-day hike on Whistlers Mountain. So if you want to fill your day with a family adventure, choose one of these options.
Finally, one of the reasons we loved the Jasper Skytram is because it’s dog-friendly! Yes, you have to pay for a dog ticket, but traveling up the mountain and hiking the trails with your furry friend is so much fun.
If you want to spend several hours here, you don’t have to worry about returning quickly to let out your pup.
Keep in Mind: Keep your pet comfy during your travels with some of The Best Dog Camping Beds!
What Are Star Sessions at the Jasper Skytram?
As mentioned before, Jasper National Park is a dark sky preserve. In autumn, the Jasper Skytram hosts Star Sessions with astronomy experts from the Jasper Planetarium.
This experience allows guests access to the most powerful telescopes in the Canadian Rockies. You can also book a dinner, flight, and stargazing experience for a truly memorable night.
Is the Jasper Skytram Worth the Ride?
So is the Jasper Skytram worth the ride? We think so. This is one of the best things to do in Jasper for a reason. The ride is so much fun, and the views are incredible. We loved bringing our dog along and look forward to a return trip!
Have you ever visited the Jasper Skytram?