The Jasper SkyTram (also known as the “Jasper Gondola” or “Jasper Tramway”) is one of the best things to do in Jasper, providing visitors with breathtaking views of the Canadian Rockies, Jasper, and Mount Robson.
Here’s everything you need to know about riding the Jasper Gondola, which is now open every day for Summer 2022.
Jasper SkyTram (Jasper Gondola) Adventure
The Jasper SkyTram was built in 1964 and is Canada’s highest and longest tramway.
With a starting elevation of over 4,000 feet, the enclosed gondola ride to the top will take you to over 7,500 feet, where you’ll be surrounded by magnificent views of the largely unspoiled Canadian Rockies, Jasper, and the Athabasca River.
The Jasper SkyTram is one of the most popular things to do in Jasper during the summer, so it’s best to book tickets ahead of time to save time.
To avoid lines, tickets are sold on the Jasper SkyTram website and correspond to a specific time.
We recommend booking as far in advance as possible, but it does help to leave some wiggle room so you can maximize your experience and choose a sunny day.
The Jasper SkyTram is located at the base of Whistlers Peak, next to the ski resort Marmot Basin. Plan on a 10-15 minute drive from Jasper to reach the base station. We recommend that you arrive about 20 minutes before your scheduled time.
When you board the Jasper Gondola, you’ll begin the thrilling ride up to the Summit Station, which is located at an elevation of 2,263 meters (7,425 feet).
The two trams are comfortable and hold approximately 20 people for the 10-minute ride to the top. As you leave the tree line and enter the alpine, the views become more expansive on the way up.
The Summit Station is not as large as the Banff Gondola, but it does have a small gift shop and restaurant.
A full renovation is planned, which will include moving the tram to the true summit of Whistlers Peak. However, there are no firm plans for when the renovation will take place.
The views from the Summit Station are spectacular, but the best views require some effort to reach the true summit. More on that later.
The views from Whistlers Peak are truly breathtaking, but the adventure does not have to end there.
Experienced hikers can continue to Indian Ridge, an easy scramble with a beautiful ridge walk.
There are currently no scheduled return times. This means you can stay on top as long as you want until the last cable car arrives at 6:00 p.m. Unless you want to walk down in the dark.
Return trams operate on a first-come, first-served basis, so expect to wait a little longer if you choose to wait until the final hour of the day Particularly during the peak season in the Rockies.
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Hike To Whistler’s Peak from the Jasper Tramway
You can enjoy the views and restaurant at the top of the Jasper SkyTram, but everyone should try to climb up to Whistlers Peak.
The Jasper SkyTram will take you most of the way, but a 20-30 minute hike will take you to the summit. It’s a 1.4-kilometer hike from the summit station to 2,463 meters, with only 200 meters of elevation gain (8,081 ft).
Hikers will be rewarded with breathtaking views of the distant mountains, including the glacier-clad Mt. Robson to the north, the tallest mountain in the Rockies, and Mount Edith Cavell to the south.
It’s a relatively short journey to the top, but the uninitiated should brace themselves for a workout. You only need to listen to find out where the name Whistlers Peak came from. The sharp whistle of hoary marmots who live in the alpine region will be heard.
Continue to Scramble Indian Ridge
If Whistler’s Summit isn’t enough of a challenge, continue to Indian Ridge. Indian Ridge is another 12.7 km (round trip) and 950+ meters of elevation gain from the Jasper Tramway, but it’s a beautiful hike that isn’t too difficult.
Only a small percentage of visitors continue to Indian Ridge, so don’t be put off by the crowds at the start.
The entire hike takes place above the tree line, providing breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks and lakes. From the ridge, we thought the views of Robson and the surrounding alpine were even better. Whistlers Peak is about 3 kilometers from Indian Ridge’s highest point.
The trail to the ridge is a pleasant walk through the Alpine Tundra, with only the last few meters requiring you to use your hands.
They’re simple moves, but it’s still scrambling, and it did deter two groups on our day up the ridge. So, before deciding whether or not to continue to the Indian Ridge, make sure you have a little bit of scrambling in the Rockies.
You can walk along a beautiful ridge once you reach the highest point. The trail is very straightforward and requires very few technicalities until the end.
Before you can descend the shale back to Whistlers Peak, you must detour to the northwest corner at the end of the ridge and scramble along with a cliff band. If this section proves too difficult, return the way you came for an easier route.
For those who own Alan Kane’s Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies, Indian Ridge is a must-see. So, if you want to complete all of the scrambles, you should cross this one off the list.
Ticket Prices For The Jasper SkyTram
A scenic ride on the historical Jasper SkyTram is not inexpensive. Full-priced tickets are priced as follows. There are also several ways to get a discount.
- Adults (16+ years) — $57.30
- Youth (6-15 years) — $30.35
- Child (Under 6 years) — $6
- Family Package (2 Adult + 2 Youth) — $131.50
Jasper SkyTram Promotions And Discounts
There are several discounts and deals available for the Jasper SkyTram. The first and best deal is that you can get a 20% discount on an early bird ticket. From June 24 to September 5, this special is available daily from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Season pass holders at Marmot Basin, AMA members, locals, Snow Valley Aerial Park members, and HI members all receive discounts ranging from 15% to 30% off their tickets.
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Is The Jasper SkyTram Worth It?
While taking the Jasper SkyTram to the top of Whistler’s Peak has many advantages, the cost is a deterrent.
At more than $50 per adult on average, it’s an expensive ordeal, especially if you’ve already purchased a Maligne Lake Cruise or the Banff Gondola in Banff.
The high prices continue with the restaurant and gift shop, which feel overpriced when compared to the rest of Jasper’s restaurants.
When compared to other gondolas or chairlifts in the region, the ticket price is reasonable. We prefer the views at Lake Louise and the hiking opportunities at Sunshine Village.
They also have a lower price point and are less crowded. Then, of course, there’s a strong case to be made that many hikes in Banff and Jasper provide far better views than any of these free operations.
The Jasper SkyTram, on the other hand, is easily accessible from the town of Jasper. If you have limited mobility, it would be worthwhile to spend a little more and go.
If you’re visiting Banff and want to take a gondola ride, the Banff Gondola has far superior facilities, including a nice restaurant boardwalk, elevators, and wheelchair-accessible viewpoints.
Competitor Prices in the Neighborhood
- Banff Gondola – Adult $65 (average surge price), Child $30
- Adult $41, Child $26, Family $120 @ Mt. Norquay
- Adult $44, Youth $40, Child $30-Sunshine Village
- Lake Louise – $55 for adults, $15 for children.
- Adults pay $50, while children pay $43 for kicking a horse
Weather Conditions For The Jasper SkyTram
The disadvantage of purchasing advance tickets is that you may be scheduled during inclement weather.
Don’t be concerned if it’s cloudy; the cloud cover may be high enough to obscure the views of the mountains. It is possible, however, that cloud cover will obscure the mountain top.
If the weather is truly bad, you may be given the option to reschedule your date and time. To check out the views from the top of the mountain, the Jasper SkyTram website has a webcam that shows visibility.
Return Policy For The Jasper SkyTram
Returns are accepted if they are returned up to one hour before the scheduled departure time on the ticket.
If the departure time has already passed, there will be no refunds; however, you may exchange your ticket for a different time and date.
Is The Jasper SkyTram Accessible To Wheelchair Users?
The Jasper SkyTram is mostly wheelchair accessible. Although the Summit Cafe at the upper station is not wheelchair accessible, and the trail to Whistlers Summit is not wheelchair accessible,
How Frequently Does The Jasper SkyTram Operate?
Every 9 minutes, the Jasper SkyTram departs from the upper and lower stations. The ride takes just under ten minutes.
The Gondola is a great place to visit for vacations and other recreational activities by yourself with your partner, your children, and your whole family.