Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft


Tuesday, May 17th, 2011 — 9:35pm PST
Comments 8

This morning I set out on the Rocky Mountaineer train with a group of media traveling to Echo Valley Ranch. While the train was simply our selected mode of transport up the Fraser Canyon into the Chilcotin Cariboo region of BC, it was well-worth photographing and documenting the experience.

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Departing from the Rocky Mountaineer station off Terminal Avenue in East Vancouver, the route took us over CN and CP rail lines through New Westminster, Surrey, Harrison, Agassiz, Hope, and up the Fraser Canyon.

Pattullo & New Westminster Swing Bridge

Breakfast Breakfast

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Hell's Gate

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

In the dining car, we met a man traveling from Cyprus who enjoys passing through BC every now and then on his way to Hong Kong. I think in this regard, train travel is far more social than air travel. You can sit and face your companions while enjoying your meal and interact with the staff who share historic tidbits, anecdotes, and make sure to clink glasses with every single passenger as the train departs from the station.

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

Truth be told, train travel takes much longer than the highways or even air, but it’s something worth experiencing. The comforting sway of the carriages, the waves from strangers watching as the train breezes through towns, and the unique scenery not visible from well-traveled roads makes for a relaxing and insightful ride.

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

While Ashcroft isn’t an official stop (passengers heading to Jasper or Calgary were spending the night in Kamloops) the train slowed to a halt to let us off so that we could hitch a ride to our destination. Echo Valley is located North West of Clinton, then about 35 kilometers up a gravel road along the backside of Marble Range Provincial Park.

Rocky Mountaineer to Ashcroft

I’ll be at Echo Valley for the next few days with limited access. Tomorrow we wake up and head to the Thai spa for yoga, which will be followed by a family-style breakfast in the lodge’s great room, then a horseback trail ride through Gold Rush country.

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8 comments

  1. gigglesq says:

    We are so fortunate to live in such a beautiful part of the country! I imagine that train ride would be awesome fodder for writing! Have fun!

  2. cheryl says:

    Too bad the train is just sooooo expensive!

  3. Tyler says:

    What an awesome trip!
    I love train trips, I wish I could take another but they are so expensive.

    Last one I went on was with TravelAlberta up to Whistler for the Olympics. That was cool. Seeing the SeaToSky Corridor via rail was beautiful! Lots of awesome photos to be had!

  4. Mom604 says:

    I love trains! I would love to travel on the Rocky Mountaineer one day. I have been on the Coast Starlight to LA. You meet all sorts of interesting travellers from all over the world. The meals are fabulous, as well, and you can’t beat the secenery, especially in BC.

  5. KyleWith says:

    That looks like so much fun. I’d love to travel by train, but alas we don’t have passenger trains up here any more.

  6. […] A couple of months ago I was looking around online for a trip to take Wendy on our anniversary.  After checking out VIA Rail (train comes through Saskatoon at midnight and goes through Edmonton and Jasper, not Banff), I saw something about The Rocky Mountaineer and spent hours checking out their website and looking at photos from across the web. […]

  7. muckymoo says:

    Wow, that looks like fun! What a great way to travel. I look forward to hearing more about the Echo Valley Ranch. It is a beautiful part of BC and certainly is a lot drier there than here on the West Coast!

  8. HJ Mueller says:

    Very nice pictures. Haven’t been on the Mountaineer, yet, but I have a whole video library about the different sections. Not quite complete, but the rest is planned for the coming summer. My favourite of the trips? Vancouver to Calgary. And BTW talking to poeple who took the different trips, they all agreed. 🙂

    Rocky Mountaineer video library http://www.vimeo.com/album/101192

    PS don’t ask how I keep up or get ahead of the train on certain sections.

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