Jasper is the gentle giant of the Rockies. Offering visitors a more laid-back mountain experience - with equal options for adventure, discovery and relaxation.
This is our backpacking trip in Jasper's Skyline Trail.From Maligne Lake to Maligne Canyon, three days, two nights in Snow Bowl & Tekerra campgrounds, 44 KM'S in total. It rained most of the time, mosquitos were in high numbers, but we still had a good time.
I hiked the Old Fort Point and the Red Squirrel portion of this trail. The Red Squirrel portion is a flat little trail that leads into Old Fort Point trail. Old Fort Point starts off ascending stairs down near the Athabasca River. You then start your climb on the trail. It is a decent pull and a very rewarding if not spectacular view. When I hiked to the summit there was a Big Horn Ram and his mate sitting on top of the mountain! great treat! We also came across a huge Elk and his Harlem on the Red Squirrel.
The total trail distance here is actually closer to 6 miles, but the 2.5-3 miles out is up, up, and up. The climb never gets too steep except at the very end when you hit the alpine scree, and trekking poles are highly recommended, but you will fill it in your legs during the constant switchbacks. There are "shortcuts" through the switchbacks that are really washouts, but I know some people use them. Please don't! That erodes the trail. Take your time and follow the trail. You will get some views about halfway up, and the panorama from the summit is maybe the best in the area! Just before the scree slope to the summit there is a nice place for a break and a snack or photo. Use that time to prepare for the final climb.
This is one of the few trails that actually gets steeper as you go towards the summit, but stick with it, the reward is an unbelievable 360 from the top. It is cold AND WINDY at the top, so be prepared. Then make your way back down the same path. We made it up what felt like a blistering 75 minutes, and then more slowly to protect our knees on the way down.
Note: A black bear was spotted crossing the trail by a few hikers on our way down. Bring your bear spray! When you finish, refresh in the Miette Hot Springs. Busy but worth it after that climb!
Venessa B. on Valley of Five Lakes and Wabasso La...
Easy and beautiful
Great hike to do if you are just getting started on doing some big hikes. The view for most of the trek were just trees which frustrated me a little but when you got to the end of the tree line near the top the views were pretty awesome. I didn't check out the lookout so to say because I was more interested in reaching the summit. So I kind of had to make my own path up to the summit which was a bit tricky at times due to the rocks being a little unstable. The walk back down was a breeze and was done in half the time it took to get up there. If you're looking on doing a hike with great views then maybe this one isn't the best for you unless you don't mind walking 9km in the forest to get to the summit which hits you with some pretty nice views at the top