10 tips for reserving ACC huts

 

Every year more and more people are discovering the joys of traveling in the mountains and staying overnight in the backcountry. More people are breathing the air and watching the stars and falling in love with the alpine, and that’s all great, until they book your place in a hut before you do.

Here are 10 tips to give you the best chance to land that spot – based on the advice of the ACC’s reservations staff.

 Elizabeth Parker Hut. Photo by Barbara Budenz.

Elizabeth Parker Hut. Photo by Barbara Budenz.


Before you begin: The Basics

All hut bookings must be made through our reservation staff (with the exception of the Canmore Clubhouse that can be booked online. See #5 below).

Phone: 403-678-3200 ext 0

Hours: 8:30 am to 9:30 pm MST everyday.

To make a booking you’ll need:

  • The name of the hut or huts.
  • Your overnight dates.
  • The number of ACC members (and their names) in your party. To get the discount.
  • The number of children (under 16) in your party. Again, for discounted rate.
  • A Visa or Mastercard number for payment.
  • The number of Wilderness Passes you wish to purchase for the trip.

 Fairy Meadow Hut. Photo by Crystal Como.

Fairy Meadow Hut. Photo by Crystal Como.


Ok, ready to go? Here’s your playbook.

1. Plan ahead

Just like racking up to climb a pitch or packing your ski pack, you’ll be glad you were thinking ahead. We accept reservations up to one year in advance from ACC members and 30 days from everyone else. Now, not all of our huts book up one year ahead (far from it), but if you wait until you can see what the weather’s going to be like, you might have waited too long. And you probably guessed that weekends fill up first.

2. Do your research

What’s it like at the hut? Is it a good destination for your group? Each of our huts has its own webpage and there’s a tremendous amount of information in words, photos, maps and links on each of them. Start here.

Also, did you know that you can check availability online before calling? On a hut page, click the green Check Availability button on the right (like the one you see here). When you find some open dates then you’re good to call to book.

Learn more about our huts at the Frequently Asked Hut Questions page.

3. If you need more info, call us

If you have a question that’s not answered on our webpages, feel free to call anytime during our office hours to talk to our reservations staff. 

403-678-3200 ext 0 between 8:30 am and 9:30 pm daily

4. Or, email us

If you have a question that can be put into an email, you can always send it to our reservations staff and they’ll get back to you as soon as they can.

Please don’t email requests for bookings. As we have to take a payment and we don't accept credit card numbers via email, we have to make bookings over the phone or in person.

 Bell Cabin at the Canmore property.

Bell Cabin at the Canmore property.

5. Book Canmore properties online

For the Canmore Clubhouse, Bell Cabin and Boswell Cabin, we put some of our inventory online with the HI booking engine. Click on one of the three links above, scroll down to the Book Online section and make a booking without having to call us.

If there’s no room on the date you want, please check the availability calendar, as we don’t put all of our rooms on the HI site.

6. Call during off-peak hours

If you’re ready to make a booking, consider calling us during our less busy times for a better chance of getting through and skipping our voice mail. We’re usually busiest from 8:30 to 9:30 in the morning and between noon and 2:00 pm in the afternoon. Remember that we’re open until 9:30 each evening.

7. Leave us A voice mail

If you call and don’t get through, leave a detailed voicemail and our staff will call you back. But please note that we don't accept bookings via our voice mail. 

 The friendly front desk staff at Canmore Clubhouse. Photo by Leigh McClurg @pebbleshoo.

The friendly front desk staff at Canmore Clubhouse. Photo by Leigh McClurg @pebbleshoo.

8. Stop by in person

If you’re in the Canmore area, feel free to come up to our office in person to make a booking. We’re at 201 Indian Flats Road. Our in-person hours are the same as our phone hours.

9. Use the Google machine for other info

We’re definitely the experts on all questions about our huts, but for questions on things like road closures, trail conditions, avalanche dangers, weather reports and the like, you'll have just as much information at your fingertips as we will by hitting up a Google search.

10. Get your membership online

Our staff will gladly sort out your membership purchase or renewal during a hut booking call, but it will make the whole transaction faster if you purchase the membership online first.

Happy hut booking!