At the back of town is the excellent Jasper-Yellowhead Museum and Archives (400 Pyramid Lake Rd., 780/852-3013; mid-June–Sept. daily 10 a.m.–9 p.m., the rest of the year Thurs.–Sun. 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; adult $5, senior and child $4), as unstuffy as any museum could possibly be. The main gallery features colorful, modern picture boards with exhibits that take visitors along a timeline of Jasper’s human history through the fur trade, the coming of the railway, and the creation of the park.
The Den (corner of Connaught Dr. and Miette Ave., 780/852-3361, daily 9 a.m.–10 p.m., $3), in the darkened bowels of the Whistlers Inn, is a throwback to a bygone era, when displays of stuffed animals were considered the best way to extol the wonders of nature. “See animals in their natural setting” cries museum advertising, but the shrubbery looks suspiciously like fake Christmas trees and the bull elk seems to be screaming “Get me out of here!”
© Andrew Hempstead, from Moon Western Canada, 3rd Edition