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Rocky Mountaineer travelling on the Rockies to the Red Rocks route

What to pack for Rocky Mountaineer

A guide to packing for your Rocky Mountaineer adventure

Published on 21 Feb 2024


As you prepare to embark on an unforgettable journey through the breathtaking landscapes of the Canadian Rockies or the American Southwest aboard the iconic Rocky Mountaineer, one question looms: What should you pack? In this guide, we help you navigate the essentials and ensure you’re fully prepared for your scenic rail adventure. From versatile layers to essential accessories, let’s pack for your next adventure. 

Packing for Rocky Mountaineer’s Canadian routes

Embarking on a journey through Canada’s awe-inspiring landscapes aboard Rocky Mountaineer promises an unforgettable experience. From coastal vistas to alpine peaks and desert panoramas, Rocky Mountaineer’s Canadian routes traverse diverse climates, where temperatures can vary drastically. 

With this in mind, here’s a recommended packing list to ensure you’re prepared for every twist and turn of your Rocky Mountaineer adventure: 

Essential items for your packing list:

  • Lightweight and waterproof jacket or windbreaker: Be ready for unpredictable weather by packing a lightweight, waterproof jacket or windbreaker to shield you from rain or wind. 
  • Lightweight but warm jacket for Spring and Autumn journeys: For Spring and Autumn journeys, pack a lightweight yet warm jacket to stay comfortable during cooler temperatures. 
  • Midweight fleece or wool sweater: Layer up with a midweight fleece or wool sweater for added warmth when temperatures dip, especially during early mornings or evenings. 
  • Warm and cool, quick-dry layers: Pack a mix of warm and cool, quick-dry layers to adapt to fluctuating temperatures throughout the day. 
  • Comfortable, waterproof shoes for sightseeing: Opt for comfortable, waterproof shoes suitable for sightseeing, ensuring your feet stay dry and supported during excursions. 
  • Casual trainers and sandals: Pack casual trainers and sandals for leisurely strolls or relaxing moments aboard the train. 
  • A scarf: A versatile accessory like a scarf can provide added warmth or protection from the sun, depending on the weather. 
  • A hat, sunglasses and suncream: Protect yourself from the sun’s rays with a hat, sunglasses and suncream, essential items for outdoor adventures. 
  • A small backpack or daypack: Carry your essentials in a small backpack or daypack, perfect for storing snacks, water, suncream and a camera. 
  • A camera: Capture the breathtaking scenery of the Canadian Rockies with a camera to immortalise your Rocky Mountaineer journey. 
  • A good book: Relax and unwind during downtime aboard the train with a good book. 

If hiking: 

  • Hiking shoes or boots: For outdoor enthusiasts planning to explore hiking trails, sturdy hiking shoes or boots are a must for stability and support.
  • Wool socks: Keep your feet warm and blister-free with wool socks designed for hiking.
  • Bug spray and a water bottle: Prepare for outdoor adventures with bug spray to ward off pesky insects and a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated during hikes. 

Average daily temperatures for Canada:

 VancouverKamloopsRockiesWhistler Quesnel 
April6-13°C3-17°C-3-9°C0-12°C-1-14°C
May9-17°C8-21°C0-14°C4-16°C4-19°C
June12-20°C12-25°C3-21°C7-20°C8-23°C
July14-22°C14-29°C7-24°C9-24°C10-25°C
August14-22°C13-28°C5-22°C9-24°C9-25°C
September11-19°C9-22°C2-16°C6-20°C5-20°C
October 7-14°C3-14°C-3-10°C2-11°C1-12°C

Packing for Rocky Mountaineer’s American routes

Embarking on the Rockies to the Red Rocks route aboard Rocky Mountaineer promises an exhilarating journey through the stunning landscapes of the American Southwest. From desert vistas to the towering peaks of the Colorado Rocky Mountains, the route traverses diverse terrains where weather conditions can vary dramatically. 

To ensure you’re fully prepared for this unforgettable adventure, we’ve curated a recommended packing list tailored to the unique demands of the American Southwest: 

Essential items for your packing list:

  • Warm and cool, quick-dry layers: Prepare for fluctuating temperatures by packing a mix of warm and cool, quick-dry layers that allow you to adapt to changing weather conditions throughout the day. 
  • Comfortable shoes with good tread for sightseeing: Opt for comfortable shoes with good tread to navigate rocky terrain and explore the captivating sights of the American Southwest with ease. 
  • Casual trainers and sandals: Pack casual trainers and sandals for leisurely strolls or relaxing moments aboard the train, ensuring you stay comfortable throughout your journey. 
  • Lightweight, waterproof and breathable jacket or windbreaker: Be prepared for sudden changes in weather by bringing along a lightweight, waterproof and breathable jacket or windbreaker to shield you from rain or wind. 
  • Midweight fleece or wool sweater: Layer up with a midweight fleece or wool sweater for added warmth during cooler temperatures, especially at higher elevations in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. 
  • A hat, sunglasses and suncream: Protect yourself from the sun’s rays with a hat, sunglasses and suncream, essential items for outdoor adventures in the desert landscape.
  • A small backpack or daypack: Carry your essentials in a small backpack or daypack, perfect for storing snacks, water, suncream and a camera during off-train excursions.
  • A bandana: A versatile accessory like a bandana can provide protection from the sun, dust or wind and can also be used as a makeshift towel or face covering. 
  • A swimsuit: If you’d like to indulge in a refreshing dip in natural pools or hot springs along the route, don’t forget to pack your swimsuit.
  • A camera: Capture the breathtaking beauty of the American Southwest with a camera to immortalise your Rocky Mountaineer journey through stunning desert landscapes and mountain vistas. 
  • A good book: Relax and unwind during downtime aboard the train with a good book, immersing yourself in captivating stories as you traverse the diverse landscapes of the American Southwest. 

If hiking: 

  • Hiking shoes or boots: For outdoor enthusiasts planning to explore hiking trails, sturdy hiking shoes or boots are essential for traction and support on rugged terrain. 
  • Wool socks: Keep your feet warm and blister-free with wool socks designed for hiking in varied conditions. 
  • Bug spray and a water bottle: Prepare for outdoor adventures with bug spray to ward off insects and a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated during hikes in the desert heat. 

Average daily temperatures for America:

 MoabGlenwood SpringsDenver
April4-22°C0-16°C0-17°C
May9-28°C4-22°C5-22°C
June13-34°C8-28°C10-27°C
July17-37°C12-32°C13-31°C
August16-36°C11-30°C12-30°C
September11-31°C6-26°C7-25°C
October2-23°C1-18°C0-19°C
November -3-13°C-5-10°C-5-12°C

With our comprehensive packing list, you’ll be fully equipped to embrace the spirit of Rocky Mountaineer and embark on a journey of discovery and adventure. 

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