Day 2 of the train Journey begins with an early departure out of Kamloops. Today we are experiencing the wonderful Silver Leaf service on board the train.
So, what is the difference between gold and silver leaf, I hear you ask!!!
Ok so the 3 main differences that I could see straight away were: 1. Silver leaf is single level with no separate dining area. The meals are served at your seat 2. The seats are not as luxurious and there is a tray table attached to the seat in front 3. The vestibule in Golf Leaf is much bigger and can hold 10 guests rather than 2 on the Silver Leaf vestibule
Now there are some other minor differences but I would say these are the major ones. One of the minor differences is that the drinks in Gold Leaf are free flowing and the drinks in Silver Leaf are only offered periodically throughout the day.
I actually liked the Silver leaf carriages as it was only 1 level and the roof was much higher giving a sense of more space. I also get the sense that Silver leaf is a bit more social and you tend to meet and chat to the other travellers more frequently than in Gold.
Now in Silver leaf as I said, the meals are served at your seat, and they come down the aisle with the trolley, but the meals are not pre-packaged like on an aeroplane, they are served to you on china plates and proper cutlery, so it is still quite stylish. They are also able to cater for special dietary requirements, as long as you let them know before the journey commences.
So, today’s scenery certainly stepped up a notch. We are climbing from 1100 feet up to 4000 feet and crossing from British Columbia into Alberta and making our way through Lake Louise to Banff. Everywhere you look there are snow-capped mountains glistening away on this perfect spring day.
There were so many great sights on today’s journey. We start the morning off with a toast to Rocky Mountaineer and another hearty breakfast whilst heading up through Eagle Pass, then skirting around the mist covered lake near Craigellachie, all this whilst the sun rose spectacularly over the Rocky Mountains in the east. As the temperature started to rise into double figures we passed through Rogers Pass and Kicking Horse Canyon and it was almost time for lunch, a couple of drinks and some more great, spectacular scenery. After lunch we passed through the spiral tunnels and then over the great divide and into Lake Louise before arriving into Banff in the early evening.
Although it was 8pm, it was still daylight and gave us time to wander around the town to get our bearings and find somewhere to have dinner. All I can remember was being blown away when I walked up the main street and there was a snowcapped mountain right there in front of me. It absolutely took my breath away, which doesn’t happen very often.
We ended up wandering around until around 9pm and then found the pub a few doors up from our hotel … how convenient for us! I tried the famous Alberta Beef, which was definitely above average on the deliciousness scale.
It’s amazing how sitting on a train watching the world go by makes you so tired or maybe it was the beer!