The Tonquin Valley
Four day guided and catered backpacking trip
This four day traverse travels through the heart of the Tonquin Valley in Jasper National Park. Scheduled for early September, we'll escape the summer mosquitoes!
2020 Dates: By Request
Price per person: $1000 plus 5% GST
Guiding, group equipment and all food beginning with lunch on the first day and concluding with lunch on the final day. It also includes the cost of shuttles to and from the trailhead and backcountry camping fees.
This trip is rated as 'moderate', with shorter distances and less elevation gain than some our other trips. We will be carrying four days of food, keeping the pack weights low, but our legs will still be challenged by the mountain travel. Each person will be carrying a share of the group equipment and food, with pack weights of 30-45 lbs. You will need to be fit enough to carry a backpack for multiple days.
Accommodation and Meals:
We will be staying in lightweight backpacking tents and in established Jasper National park backcountry campgrounds. Each campsite is equipped with outhouses and food storage facilities. You are responsible for supplying your own tent, however, we will arrange for a tent rental on your behalf if you require (extra charge will apply).
Meals will be lightweight backpacking food (dried food), although we will have some fresh food earlier in the trip.
Each day will consist of three nutritious (and tasty!) meals and some snacks to keep us fuelled throughout the day.
Evening - Meet in Jasper the evening before the trip start date to sign waivers, discuss the logistics and to ensure everybody has appropriate equipment for the trip.
Day 1 - Portal Creek trailhead to Portal Creek campsite
We will meet in Jasper on the first morning to sign waivers, discuss the logistics and to ensure everybody has appropriate equipment for the trip. From town, we will be shuttled up to the Portal Creek trailhead, where the hiking will begin. We'll ease into the trip with a gradually ascending trail through the forest, with the beautiful Portal creek our companion. Midway through trip in we'll emerge into the alpine, with great views enroute to our campsite at Portal Creek.
Distance: 8.7 km, Elevation: 350m up.
Day 2- Portal Creek to Amethyst Lake
Today the views will just get better and better. We'll begin our ascent into the alpine up to Maccarib Pass. From there we'll brave some muddy trails down the other side and onwards to Amethyst Lake, the heart of the Tonquin Valley. If we are lucky, we may catch a glimpse of the mountain caribou that are known to call this place home.
Distance: 14,2 km, Elevation: 160m up, 180m down.
Day 3 - Amethyst Lake to Astoria River
Today we'll spend a morning lingering in the valley, taking in our final views of the 'Ramparts'. Once packed up, we'll hike through the valley marshes on some great boardwalks, before we head up on a rising traverse through the forest. We'll be rewarded with views of the expansive mountains and glaciers as we reach the treeline. Our biggest descent is ahead, as we make our way down to the beautiful Astoria River, and our camp for the night.
Distance: 13.5 km, Elevation: 50m up, 325m down.
Day 4 - Astoria River to trail end at Astoria River trailhead
Today we'll have a short trek out the Astoria River valley, taking in the sights of the brilliantly coloured water as we go. We'll reach our ride home with plenty of time to make it back to town for a celebratory dinner out.
Distance: 7 km, Elevation: 25m up.
Logistics: This is a one way trip, and Aster Mountain Adventures will arrange for a shuttle to both the starting and finishing trailheads from the town of Jasper.
Group equipment supplied by Aster Mountain Adventures: all cooking equipment, group tarp in case of rain, first aid and equipment repair kits, and emergency communication devices.
Personal equipment: Tent, sleeping bag, sleeping mat, cup/bowl/utensils, personal clothing and toiletries.
Cost does not include: personal equipment, pre- or post-trip accommodation, breakfast on the first day or gratuities.