Turtle, Ecuador

Your words, not ours

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Your Words - We tell it like it is! Holiday Reviews by previous Exodus travellers  

Here at Exodus we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can ensure our trips continue to be the best they can be. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of the trip you're interested in, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.

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  • Reviewed September 2017
    Kevin Grewcock

    Canadian Rockies Wilderness Walks

    Generally a nice holiday, in spectacular scenery. The food was varied and very plentiful (although having 10 females in the party of 12, plus 2 male guides might have had a bearing on this). Assorted dietary restrictions were catered for. The sites were fine, with the exception of the "last" one near Waterton Park (Waterton Springs Campground) which, in all honesty, was unacceptable for a holiday costing in excess of £3,000 for 11 days camping. We had a 1km walk to get hot water for anything, the toilet facilities near our tents were basic and only just about acceptable (if you ignore the lack of hot water) and the sinks for washing up in were disgusting. They had a large number (40-50) of RVs on site, all situated next to the office and all facilities. We were put as far away from there as was possible on the site (presumably so that a "noisy" group wouldn't disturb their main source of income - the RVs). There may have been another 5-6 people in tents while we were there. We were unfortunate in that, due to fires, Waterton Park was closed the day after we arrived and then totally evacuated, so I cannot comment on the walks there. This was a shame as I had visited there for 2 days last year and really loved it - there is what looked to be a reasonable site in Waterton Park itself, beautifully situated next to the village, although I can't comment on its facilities as I was in a hotel. In fact, returning there was a major factor in me choosing to go on this holiday. On the plus side, we only stayed at the poor site for one night. The tour company arranged a new site, well away from the fires (a 500km drive in fact), in a much nicer site, at very short notice.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I didn't find anything "inspirational", but I am generally not one for strong emotions.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    On the whole, good. At times he did almost seem to be showing off how good a "walker" he was - fast and very agile - but not to the point of doing anything dangerous. It did seem to take us a long while to have breakfast and out on the walk at times. Due to a combination of circumstances, the group naturally split into a faster and a slower group. The two guides handled this well, I thought. Even suggesting some alternative, shorter, routes for the slower group (which included me) on some days so that we didn't feel that we were holding up the faster group all the time.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    To enjoy this holiday to the full, you don't just need a good level of fitness, a good level of experience of exercise (walking, running) in hilly terrain is almost a must. I run 3/4 times a week, up to an hour at a time, but there are not many hills near me. The first 2 days left me with very achy muscles from the amount of continuous, uphill walking - often steep and often more than an hour at a time. I sat out day 3 to recover. Although I could have done the walk, I may well have then had to rest for more than a day. If you do not travel light, you might want to pay to have a tent to yourself. Although there were 2 men in the group, the other one was with his wife, so I got a tent to myself. I found this a benefit, apart from putting up and taking down the tent. However that was pretty straightforward, even for one person. I took a 4 seasons sleeping bag, but was too hot every night. However, others were cold on some nights. The overnight temperature (Aug 28 to Sept 7) didn't drop below 10°C in my tent. Personally I think that a 3 seasons bag plus a light blanket would be a better recommendation than a 4 seasons bag.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The holiday was rated as 4/10 for fitness levels required. Not sure what a 10 would be (climbing Everest?). Personally, I think 5 would be more appropriate.
  • Reviewed August 2016
    Matthew Probert

    Excellent trip

    The scenery is stunning - not dissimilar to parts of the Alps, but a lot more of it. Our guides (Mac and MP) were both very good - knowledgeable, informative and nothing was too much trouble - and were obviously very passionate about the Rockies. Mac is a great cook, and managed to produce food you really wouldn't expect when camping - pizza and homemade granola to name two highlights.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Sentinel Pass walk was a highlight, as was jumping into the lake at Waterton after a long, hot day.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take insect repellant (and use it).

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip is graded 5 and, in comparison to other Exodus trips, I don't think that's quite right. Four of the day walks are probably 4-5s, but overall the trip is a lot easier than other 5-graded trips I've done.
  • Reviewed August 2016
    Georgia Freeman-Mills

    Memorable trip to the Canadian Rockies

    Really fantastic trip! I got to experience the totally breathtaking Canadian Rockies with a lovely group of people, and led by knowledgeable and passionate guides. The hiking is brilliant, and this trip allows you to walk on the less touristy trails and really get a taste for the wilderness. The itinerary is really well thought-out, meaning you get to walk in a few of the national parks to get a fuller and more varied sense of the landscape, and also the longer hikes are perfectly spread out with easier walking in-between. The guides worked really hard and were incredibly considerate of the group's preferences. The meals were varied and delicious, and nothing beats sitting by a campfire after a long day of hiking. Such a memorable way to see the Rockies, and definitely served to convince me that I'm going back!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hiking up to the summit at Lineham Ridge in Waterton Lakes national park towards the end of the hike - the most breathtaking view, and it just our group at the top! We stopped to have lunch at the summit and I was completely lost for words. Definitely one of the most memorable moments of our trip.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Mac was the best leader! You'll be lucky if you have Mac or M.P with you on the trip - they really worked hard to make sure everyone was looked after. Mac cooked us a different delicious breakfast almost every morning, and there was also always a really fantastic vegetarian option for me. He was a passionate guide and always considerate of each person in the group, making sure we all felt comfortable on the hikes. I couldn't fault the guides, they really made the trip!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack insect repellant and sun cream, and make sure you remember a warm jacket for the evenings and early mornings. Plastic bags are also really useful for damp or wet clothing, and for packing the lunch boxes in your backpack. I also wished I had brought some waterproof trousers for when it rained while we were in the middle of a hike, but they're not absolutely essential. The guides do a fantastic job of looking after you, and there are outdoor stores at regular intervals if you need or forget anything.
  • Reviewed August 2016
    Mojca Bernik

    Rocky Wilderness Walk

    Excellent organization, a lot of fun and beautiful places. Perfect evenings with excellent grill food from best guide I ever had. Great people all over the world!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    First view of tourqase colour Lake Louise.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Best leader I ever had. Mac, thanks for all joy, lot of information about nature and all the beautiful places we saw!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be positive and just enjoy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    More that kind of hikes!
  • Reviewed July 2016
    Heather Wall

    Canadian Rockies and Wilderness Walks

    Superb trip - described as challenging and it was! But well worth it for fabulous scenery and wildlife.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Achieving the Crypt Lake walk (not on the itinerary, but offered as a choice instead of Lineham). We were limited in time as only one boat each way across the Lake and the walk included exciting time climbing iron ladder, going through tunnel and precarious ledge walk! Very pleased to have done it - and bought the T-shirt!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Superb - Mac was a great cook, and full of knowledge about the history, geology and fauna of the area. Not so hot on plants, but we had plenty of reference material to check up with. Also Mac introduced us to CBC Radio programme The Debaters which was excellent for passing the time on some of the longer journeys between camp sites. As a leader, he was very capable and hard working, always ensuring everyone was included and treated fairly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do not believe the trip notes regarding shoes - trainers would not be suitable for this terrain, esp when snow on the ground. Walking shoes or boots are better. Take a pair of flip flops or similar, for camp and one of the walks involves a stream crossing. Don't bother to pack a hairdryer. Don't need anything smart for eating out - casual is fine. Pack a pillow of some kind. In June the Lake Louise camp was very cold at night, but the later camps were not so bad. Expect mosquitoes - don't forget your insect repellent. Most people found walking poles very useful. There are sometimes secure lockers for charging items at the camp site - otherwise there were sockets in the shower/toilet blocks, but not secure.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Fab holiday for the great outdoors, beautiful scenery, good food (depending on your leader!) and good group size. Participation camping not too onerous - just help with washing up, cooking if needed and putting up and taking down own tent. Teamwork helped to build a good group atmosphere.
  • Reviewed September 2015
    John Eley

    Canadian Rockies

    A great 12 days hiking. Only downside was poor visibility due to forest fires in US for the first week - something completely outside Exodus's control.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The last major hike from Cameron Lake to Waterton Lakes via Summit Lake & Carthew pass through hail & gale force winds. A close 2nd was the hike up Paradise Valley to Sentinel pass & down to Moraine Lake - an inspired Leader variation. The "advertised " trek would have rather dull.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A great father & son team - Father guide, son driver. Both very knowledgeable about the area, wildlife & Canada in general. The cooking and packed lunches were excellent - everything done with great care. Sebastian's changes to the published itinerary were inspired. The additional walk around Red Rock Canyon on the last day was a great extra.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Come prepared for all four seasons! Participation is key - the more you muck in, the more you'll enjoy it.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The optionals would be better listed separately at the end. It could then be made clear that they are in most cases alternatives to a trek not additions.
  • Reviewed August 2015
    Jane Durgan

    Rockies and Wilderness Walk

    We had a fabulous time. All weather's were experienced....snow, rain, heat and smoke. Our Great American Adventure guides (Audrey and Simon) were a terrific double act with a tremendous sense of fun. The food was exceptional and rapidly geared to the groups requirements.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hiking through 12" of virgin snow across Cavell Meadows

    What did you think of your group leader?

    They were a really great pair. Always cheerful and lots of fun

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack for all weathers. The nights can be VERY chilly
  • Reviewed October 2013
    Anonymous

    HIKING IN THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

    A fantastic holiday enabling you to see the Rockies in a way that you would not experience if travelling on your own.  Though this is a challlenging set of hikes it's perfectly doable for anyone who walks in areas like the Lake District.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Loads of them, fantastic views, great scenery and seeing a grizzly bear up close.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    You will be very lucky if you get Renee and Catherine as your leaders.  Not only are they knowledgeable and relaxed, but also superb cooks.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Get yourself walking-fit before you go.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A good camera and an appreciation of Canadian beer are extremely useful.
  • Reviewed October 2013
    Anonymous

    HIKING IN THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

    Fantastic trip, scenery and walks were so much better than I imagined. Some great wildlife encounters as well. The four regions we camped in were quite different from each other so you got a great overview of the Rockies.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many highlights. All the walks were great but I really loved Valley of the Ten Peaks/Sentinel Pass, Yoho National Park and Crypt Lake. Loved the Waterton Lakes region, it was so different to the other 3 areas we camped in.Great wildlife sightings, grizzly and black bear, elk, moose, deer, sheep and pika!  

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Renee and Catherine were great - fun, friendly and helpful, nothing was too much trouble. They cooked fantastic meals, and Catherines lunches were mouth watering.Renne has so much great knowledge about Canada and was willing to answer the many questions. They were the best guides I have had on any trip I have been on. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Weather is very changeable so make sure you pack clothes for layering. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    All the campsites were very well organised, clean and spacious, there was plenty of room for the group to spread out.A perfect holiday with a variey of hikes that are all different, and you only move campsites 4 times. You get to experience a range of different environments. A great hiking introduction to the Rockies.
  • Reviewed October 2013
    Anonymous

    HIKING IN THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

    A great holiday and adventure unforgettable

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the verity of rock structures

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent leader cook and driver could not wish for better

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just book now

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I was surprised out flight seets we're not booked I had three seat changes before the outward flight and 4 of our party could not get a return seat on the booked flight having to be transferred to another airport.
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