The Athabasca Glacier is a massive glacial toe located in the Canadian Rockies, in Alberta, Canada. It is the most-visited glacier in North America. It’s one of the highest mountain roads of the country.
Located in the southern end of Jasper National Park, in the Canadian Rockies, the road to the glacier is totally paved. It’s called Snocoach Road. Starting from the paved Highway 93 (Icefields Parkway), the drive is 2.2km (1.36 miles) long. It ends at the Ice Explorer Boarding Station, on the way to the Athabasca Glacier, at an elevation of 2.120m (6,955ft) above the sea level.
The glacier, a tongue of ice approximately 6 km (3.7 mi) long and one kilometer wide, is one of the jewels of the Canadian Rockies. It’s said to be the easiest glacier in the world to access by car. Because of a warming climate, the glacier has been receding or melting for the last 125 years. The glacier is dangerous. People have been killed falling into deep, hidden cracks called crevasses in the glacier. For your safety do not cross the barriers. The road to the glacier is very steep. Starting from the Icefields Parkway, the elevation gain is 135 meters and the average gradient is 6.13%. The road is closed during the winter (mid-October to mid-April).