All prices listed are for the high season, which are typically 50% higher (or more) than the rest of the year -- book before June or after September, if possible. Reserve well in advance. For off-season rates, be sure to call -- they usually follow a complex structure. Lodging in Jasper can be difficult; most of the mid-range hotels were built in the same era (early 1980s) and are all owned by a single chain. If you can't find a room, contact Rocky Mountain Reservations (tel. 877/902-9455 or 780/852-9455; www.rockymountainreservations.com), which offers a free booking service for Jasper accommodations and activities.
Moderate -- Big hotels aren't your only option for staying in Jasper. In the high season, dozens of area homes become B&Bs. While they are by no means luxurious -- especially compared to the classier home-stay options in Banff -- they are often good value, most ranging from C$60 to C$85 for double occupancy, usually paid in cash. Get a complete list by contacting the Jasper Home Accommodation Association (P.O. Box 758, Jasper, AB T0E 1E0; www.stayinjasper.com). It's not a booking agency, so you'll have to contact the association's members directly to reserve.
If you're not the B&B type, Jasper also has a few motor lodges. Try the friendly but basic Maligne Lodge (900 Connaught Dr.; tel. 800/661-1315 or 780/852-3143; www.malignelodge.com), a two-story motel wrapped around a kidney-shaped pool. It also has a family restaurant and bar. Rooms start at C$199 for a double.
Inexpensive -- Budget travelers flock to two Hostelling International hostels, both reachable at P.O. Box 387, Jasper, AB T0E 1E0 (tel. 866/762-4122 or 780/852-3215; www.hihostels.ca) and open year-round. It's advisable to book well ahead in summer. The closest to town is the 80-bed Jasper International Hostel, on Skytram Road, 6km (4 miles) west of Jasper. It charges C$26 for members and C$29 for nonmembers. Private rooms are C$65 and C$72, respectively. Two family rooms, a barbecue area, indoor plumbing, hot showers, and bike rentals are available. In winter, ask about ski packages. A more rustic option is the Maligne Canyon wilderness hostel, which has no running water. It's off Maligne Lake Road, 18km (11 miles) east of Jasper, and sleeps 24; rates are C$23 for members and C$25 for nonmembers. The appeal here is immediate access to hiking, skiing, and cycling trails, since the hostel is situated above the spectacular Maligne Canyon. There's a self-catering kitchen with purified water for cooking, a refrigerator, and propane stove.
In & Around Hinton
If you're willing to stay a half-hour or 45-minute drive away from downtown Jasper, you can find good accommodations with markedly lower prices in the Hinton area, which is just to the east of the park gate. Here, you will find a typical array of reliable motor hotels. The Best Western White Wolf Inn (828 Carmichael Lane; tel. 800/220-7870 in Canada or 780/865-7777) has 42 air-conditioned rooms, most with kitchenettes. The Black Bear Inn (571 Gregg Ave.; tel. 888/817-2888 or 780/817-2000) features an exercise room, hot tub, and restaurant. The Crestwood Hotel (678 Carmichael Lane; tel. 800/661-7288 or 780/865-4001) has a pool and restaurant. Doubles at these locations range from C$95 to C$145.
As in Banff, Hostelling International (tel. 877/852-0781 or 780/852-3215; www.hihostels.ca/alberta) runs a number of rustic hostels in Jasper. These are all road-accessible, however, so they're not technically "backcountry." Call the main number to make reservations or for information, as the hostels themselves don't have phones. The Beauty Creek Hostel on the Icefields Parkway (Hwy. 93), 17km (11 miles) north of the Icefield Information Centre (87km/54 miles south of the Jasper townsite) sleeps 24 people in 2 cabins and has wood-stove heating, propane cooking, and lamplights. It is quite austere, with an outdoor toilet and no electricity or showers -- authentic backcountry. It is perfect if you're interested in getting some hiking done. Rates are C$23 per person per night for Hostelling International members and C$25 per person per night for nonmembers.
The Mount Edith Cavell Hostel (take Hwy. 93A south from the townsite to Cavell Road; turn west and continue 13km/8 miles to the hostel, on the east side of the road) offers basic shelter in a handful of cabins in a narrow valley in the shadow of Mount Edith Cavell. There's no running water, but purified water is available for cooking (on propane stoves). And there's a refrigerator. Rates are C$23 per person per night for Hostelling International members and C$25 per person per night for nonmembers.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.