From a safety perspective, you might want to rule out Hwy 5 between
Hope and Merritt due to dense fog. That leaves Hwy 1 (Trans-Canada)
and Hwy 3 as the major east-west routes across southern BC. BC
Highways reports Hwy 1 is in good shape but with lots of road work
west of Cache Creek. The Trans-Canada is also in good shape in
Alberta. Hwy 3 is reported as bare with slippery sections at higher
elevations. In the Kootenay Pass, Hwy 3 has fallen rock and frost
As far as reliability goes, Hwy 1 east of Revelstoke was shut down in
January. But on the other hand, the weather forecast for Tuesday is
for mild and sunny conditions, so the roads probably won't be any
worse than they are now.
Based on the information I've come across, I think Hwy 1, the
Trans-Canada, is the safest and most-reliable route from Vancouver to
I hope this answer meets your needs. If not, please request clarification.
Sources: BC Ministry of Transportation, "Road Reports," 12 Feb. 2005,
CHBC Television, "Trans-Canada Closure," 20 Jan. 2005,
Alberta Motor Association, "Road Report Alberta Highways,"
Yahoo! Weather, "Banff Weather," http://weather.yahoo.com/forecast/CAXX0023.html.
BC Transportation Department
British Columbia recommended route Trans-Canada