Rocky Mountaineer

A rail excursion through the mountains of Western Canada aboard the Rocky Mountaineer has long been on my list of to-do train rides. And this morning, here I am: in Vancouver watching a quarter-mile-long train in stunning blue and gold livery ease to a gentle stop at the platform right in front of me.

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Tim LeffelThe mountainous regions of British Colombia and Alberta in Canada are places where the journey truly is as exciting as the destination. Winding through the snowy mountains in a train or cruising in a car up the Icefields Parkway, nature displays one unbelievable panorama after another.

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Short-hop flights are bad for the environment (and less enjoyable every month), but driving is also inefficient and steadily more expensive. Tim Leffel sets out on a family vacation covering four cities, using public transportation for 12 days.

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