Explore the most popular forest trails near Banff with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

After you cross over the river in the beginning, the trail seems to be endless switchbacks that are surprisingly very steep. We reached the false summit but by that point the snow clouds had set in and we unfortunately didn’t get to experience the view. We ate lunch and warmed up a bit there and then continued on. As the trail turned into just rock we started losing site of the trail with all the snow. We ended up turning back rather than making the news as honeymooners stranded in snowstorm lol! I would definitely do this hike again if the weather was clear because from the glimpses we could get through clouds I’m sure the views are phenomenal! Not worth the effort in my opinion if the weather conditions aren’t so good.

3 days ago

Rather boring thru unimpressive Johnston Canyon and the lower/upper falls. Paved path good for families and seniors. Lots of people dropped off by buses. We continued onto the Ink Pots via a rather steep hike (dirt trail); the crowds thin out. The Ink Pots are very interesting and worth the hike.

Very easy paved path with railing for the majority of the route. Beautiful waterfall/river/canyon views but extremely crowded. 10-15 minute lines at each viewpoint so we turned back after the second waterfall before going further to the ink pots.

my favorite hike, nature is the best!

Loved this trail! The waterfall Is beautiful and the ink pots are a beautiful hue if turquoise and and a nice place for a picnic.

Has a clear path. I'm extremely out of shape so I was surprise to see that it only took me 2.5 to almost 3 hours to complete (climb up).

If you pace yourself, then it's a beautiful hike up. I would definitely recommend.

Great hike to do solo if you are just wanting to get some great exercise and views at the top! There is no route-finding and given the popularity of the trail and the gondola overhead, I wasn’t at all worried about wears. The pooch loved it.

lots of switchbacks!! Quite challenging and some great food at the top to enjoy :)

5 days ago

We hiked this trail in the snow and although we couldn’t see much from the top due to clouds and snow coming down, it was a beautiful hike through the trees. It’s always nice to be the first footprints into freshly fallen snow and the quiet since we were the only ones on the trail was refreshing. We did not do the loop since the snow was making it a little bit harder to follow the trail. It was rated moderate but I would call it an easy moderate.

Beautiful easy hike. It could get pretty crowded so just make sure you get there early so you can actually enjoy it

Short hike, with a few larches and fireweed :) nice lakes.

10 days ago

Did this hike on a Friday (Sept 7) arriving at The main parking lot around 4pm to find ample parking. It wasn’t too crowded and we were one of the last people on Trail when we finished around 7:30pm. Arriving at ink pots was favorite of the hike with great views later in the day. There were some tough inclines but all enjoyable.

The views are amazing, the hike is tough but worth it.

10 days ago

I would give this a 3.5 star, it’s listed as moderate but we found it easy.
nice views and good for an afternoon stroll.
The beginning is a paved path along the river that you can bike up or walk, but the best part of the hike is after the pavement ends and the trail begins.
We walked at a slower pace and stoped for photos, round-trip took us three hours

Too many people from parking lot 1 all the way up to upper falls but then a very pleasant trail with much less traffic up to the ink pots. Beautiful scenery. Enjoyed a snack next to the running water before making the return trip.

11 days ago

As many have commented, the portion of the trail to the upper falls is very, very popular and crowded. However, the canyon, creek, and falls are very pretty and worth dealing with the crowds. After the upper falls we still encountered many people but at least it seemed like a real hike. We enjoyed the views of the mountains at the ink pots, as well as the ink pots. We thought the trail rating of moderate is appropriate. Overall, this is a very nice hike despite the crowds

12 days ago

Très touristique!!

12 days ago

The view!!!

This hike took us 2hr up and 1.5 down at a fairly moderate pace. The last portion after the boulders was a bit of grind but you can't NOT go to the top, the views are amazing and make the trip fully worth it. NOTE: the boulders are not the ones when you first come out of the trees, you must continue up the small trail along the scree field and then climb over the boulders to get to the final portion, it took us 20 min from the boulders to the top. Enjoy :)

12 days ago

The view at the top is very impressive but the hike was just ok ! There were lots of switchbacks and it looked like a highway. Excepted that you walk up, it was pretty easy. No obstacles! You can see the gondolas passing over your head..they make noise that kind of ruin your « nature trip ». At the top, there was A LOT of tourists... There is a center where you can learn about the place...it was fun! A great attraction for the place, but not the better hike for a hiker !

Terrible terrible mountain to hike. I wouldn't have gone there if I had known that hiking would turned into climbing. I'm so glad that I am still alive.

I have hikied a few mountains and I think here has one of the best views on the summit. The last 300 meters was quite steep like Mt. Rundle but not as loose. Totally worth it.

We arrived about 7:30 five days ago and it was wonderful as not many people were there. We felt
like we had the place to ourselves. It was so beautiful. We hiked on to the ink pots. So uphill. We didn’t enjoy as there weren’t really any views and it seem to go on forever. The ink pots were pretty and the Mountain View was pretty, but not really worth it. I guess we’re getting spoiled with the majestic beauty all around us out here!

Great hike if you’re up for a good climb for the first half! Don’t be fooled by the 5.7 miles marked on the summary - this hike is a minimum of 3.3 miles to the top, so roughly 6.6 round trip. Majority of the hike is in the woods, so no major vistas until you reach the top, with the last 30-40 mins being a pretty steep climb. However, if you hang in there, the view of the valley and surrounding mountains as well as Lake Minnewanka and Two Jack Lake are well worth it!

They are not joking when they describe this trail as heavily used. On the Falls Trail at times it felt like we were dealing with the TSA lines at an airport. Both falls are beautiful. If you want an alpine experience I recommend hiking all the way to the Inkpots - the meadow and stream are beautiful but the Inkpots were a little disappointing. The lower trail is easier because it's paved but still a workout! Getting to the Inkpots involved some very steep terrain so be prepared.

The first part of the hike seems like endless switchbacks that take forever. Once you reach the cascade amphitheatre you have great views of Banff. There’s is a false summit so make sure you study the trail beforehand. The views of Lake Minnewanka once you have summited are beautiful!

Easy hike with lots of wildflowers. The trail is quite busy. Definitely do the Grizzly /Laryx Lake loop.

16 days ago

Amazing view at the top. On the way up you get a bit of a view here and there. The hike is busy with tourists. A good moderate hike for beginners though. Some ice can make it slippery even in May.

Not much to see here and is really kinda gross with all of the horse manure. Did see fresh bear tracks on a lookout near the river.


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