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




wild flowers



nature trips

dogs on leash

Sawback, Alberta Map
10 hours ago

This was easily one of the best, if not the best hike I've done in Canada thus far, intense but an awesome experience. Walked clockwise and recommend others to do so as the beginning is steep and would be a difficult descent, plus coming down the Edith pass section was a nice way to finish but watch out for bears in this section, lots of berries around the trail (I did not see any bears).

1 day ago

Superb hike, everything one could ask for with diversity on the trail. Ranging from the switch backs with shade on the way up the early steep to the longer climb over to Cory pass and down through the forest on the decent. Feels longer than 13k.
We would agree with the trail rating but worth doing for sure.

3 days ago

This is no joke!
Steep incline on the way up but breathtaking views at the top. The scree on the descent was fun and the forest trail was a welcome change.
This is a challenge for even a physically fit hiker but well worth the climb.

5 days ago

Did this with the family ages 15 - 53. Loved this hike, but it is no joke! The first 1/4 has steep inclines that will challenge even “fit” individuals. Poles are very helpful for the scree field coming down. The combo of the 4 mile up hill climb with the overall 8.1 length make this hike more than moderate by my book.

This was my favorite hike in Banff. I would recommend doing it with fresh legs at the beginning of a stay in Banff as it’s a bit tough. Views are rewarding and worth the fatigue. Some light scrambling and climbing required. It has everything...Forrest, boulders, views, etc. Very easily found trailhead as well which is always nice. I agree with other posters that you should definitely go up Cory and down Edith.

We started early and were done by 1:30pm and had massages afterwards at the Fairmont Springs...a great reward!

Awesome views. Wildflowers in full bloom! Great day hike. A bit ambitious for a day hike if you venture down to Egypt Lake, which we did. Worth the trek down, but really extended our trip, so make sure to plan accordingly if you’re considering adding that part on. Loved it! There were bugs, but not as bad as people are making it sound. Wear good bug spray and you’ll be fine.

This trail was great. It's a good uphill but not too challenging. I would classify more as moderate to hard but I have found that too be true for many of the trail ratings. The views are spectacular. I wish we had time to summit Mt Edith or Mt Cory while we were there but the winds picked up when we got to the top of the pass. Well worth the trip. We brought bear spray but never saw any signs of bears. Bug spray is recommended though.


9 days ago

Amazing hiking experience on this trail! Although the description says that this trail is "only recommended for very experienced adventurers", I'm a novice hiker with this only being my third hike ever completed! I completed this with a friend in about 6 hours.

Highly recommended to complete this trail clockwise as there is very steep terrain that would definitely be difficult to go down during the descent. We got lost a couple of times but were able to figure out the continuation of the trail. In terms of wildlife, we saw some Bighorn Sheep close to the halfway point. We were really hoping to see some Black or Grizzly bears but didn't! The most enjoyable part of the hike was around the halfway point in the rocky area. It was really fun navigating through the rocks and then ending up in the forest for the last stretch of the trail at such a high elevation!

We didn’t find the mosquitos as bad, but we also had a cooler day which may have helped. The views are stunning and well worth the hike up! I would also say that this is more of a moderate hike. The incline is pretty steady and levels off in some areas.

12 days ago

The forest ist filled with mosquitos!!!!! and I mean there were sooooo much you can't make a break for Lunch. after 7.2 km you finish the forest and have a nice 1.4 km Hike to the pass. because of the mosquitos it doesn't worth for me. If they are no problem for you, it may be a great hike

14 days ago

Fantastic trail. Can be very challenging if you do some "off trail" like we did to much higher. Nice view to take a lots of pics but not for beginner

17 days ago

3 stars for the first few miles of trail, as it was mostly just dense woods and full of pestering flies. 5 stars once you come out of the woods. The wildflowers appeared to be in full bloom (7/27). Totally unique to anything else we saw during our week in Banff/Jasper. Highly recommend during wildflower season!

This trail is rewarding and challenging. I enjoyed the hike up to the pass and than down the scree hill back in to the forest. Although, bringing bear spray would be wise. The forest section has lots of evidence that bears frequent the area.

Amazing landscape, views for miles, trails for days, and beauty in all directions.

24 days ago

Outstanding hike! The climb up was long but by no means overwhelming. When you reach the top the views are phenomenal. As everyone else has said, definitely do the clockwise route. It makes the end of the day much more enjoyable. Be sure to take bug spray for the way down as the woods are beautiful but swarming with mosquitos. Also bring poles if you have them. We met a couple of people who had turned around because they felt uncomfortable continuing without poles. They definitely help winding your way through the scree. All in all a great day!!

Great hike. Wild flowers. Well kept trail. Easy

28 days ago

Fantastic Hike. We started around 7am and only ran into 2 other people. It was cloudy when we started, but after the first 2,000 feet or so we got above the clouds and the views were incredible. I'd say it was very challenging, but well worth it. Probably my favorite hike at Banff.

1 month ago

First 8 or so km are a bit of a slog through a dense, mosquito filled (and I mean filled! Drench yourself in bug spray) forest. Once that’s done it opens up into meadows and the views are great. Healy Pass itself is a pretty easy incline through the meadows. Flowers probably aren’t out in full force yet but were still beautiful.

Fantastic trail! Beautiful views and varied terrain. Watch for bears - we saw some.

1 month ago

The views from this hike were exceptional. Definitely do the circuit clockwise (going up to Cory Pass first rather than Edith Pass) as Cory Pass is very steep and would be challenging to descend. The trail up to Cory Pass was a bit hard to follow at points and had a lot of side trails branching off so it was tough to tell what was the correct route. Once you reach the ridge it's easier to follow though. At the pass you can follow a trail up to Mt. Edith (which I did not but it looked like scrambling was required near the top). Descending into Gargoyle Valley after Cory Pass was beautiful and once you exit the valley it's pretty easy hiking through forest. Vastly different from the other side of Mt. Edith though with lots of different vegetation. Overall a physically challenging and sometimes hard to follow but very rewarding hike!

1 month ago

Camped at E5 July 5th. Many mosquitos along the creek trail. Mostly covered and dense brush for about 8km from the sunshine parking lot. Once the pass opens up the views are awesome and there were thousands of flowers. It was quite nice. Made the trek to Egypt Lake. It’s much farther than it looks. I would come back a bit later in the year to see more flowers.

on Healy Pass Trail

1 month ago

Long and sometimes difficult, but incredibly beautiful and rewarding at the top!

1 month ago

fantastic hike, take a left at the first Y and avoid climbing up scree.

1 month ago

Did this hike June 27. The first 7 km is mostly through forest but once you reach the meadows near the top it’s beautiful. It’s a long way but it isn’t too steep so it doesn’t feel very challenging at any one point. That being said I took the detour to Simpson pass adding a few extra kilometres on the way down and was quite tired by the end. Took me 5.5 hours from the parking lot to the top and back with some stops to eat along the way.

1 month ago

I did this hike on June 25, 2018. I went up Cory Pass and came down Edith Pass. I'd recommend doing it this way. Going down Edith Pass from the top you are hiking on loose rock. I find it easier to slide down the steep loose rock slopes rather than trying to hike up them.
Hiking up Cory Pass was a lot of elevation gain at first. It did somewhat level out, but you were always gaining elevation. There is a bit of scrambling up and down part of the trail where it is mountain rock wall. However there are some signs when you start to feel lost at this scrambling section.
At the Pass I accidentally followed a trail to try and summit. Summiting was slow going and difficult. There is loose rock and dirt that easily slides out under your feet. I ended up turning around and sliding down the slope on my butt. I should have just gone up and over the Pass and started descending.
Going down from the Pass is a bit of a guessing game as to where the trail is. After you finish hiking along the gravel rock trail, you read a section with bigger rocks and some dirt. This area is easily navigated by following the cairns.
Once you reach the wooded area, the hike becomes fairly boring. You hike through woods with only a few breaks in the trees to see the mountains. There are mosquitoes in the forested hiking section, so be sure to bring bug spray. The trail goes by a creek a couple times and crosses the creek at one point. There are fallen trees everywhere, including across the trail. I had to step over or climb over more logs than I could count.

1 month ago

One of my favorite scrambles! This is one of the most beautiful places you could go in Banff and it's extremely close to town.
It's a relatively technical scramble if you're planning to summit any or all the peaks.

1 month ago

We did the hike on June 22 this is our third hike of the year and we did it in four hours and 20 minutes. After the one kilometre walk to the Y section we went left up the steep section 1st and came back down the mountain in the valley side. It was overcast and rained a little bit on our hike but all-around a great hike there is still a little bit of snow at the top, but nothing more then a foot.

1 month ago

Great trail! We went June 15th, starting with Cory pass and completing the loop via Edith pass. Cory pass is quite steep and not very well marked, but not too hard to figure out. There are a few false trails made by runoff but they all seem to meet up eventually. Great variety of wilderness, amazing views from the top. We tried to get to the peak but we’re blocked by a combination of loose rocks and snow. We did the whole loop despite quite a bit of snow covering Edith pass. Not too bad if you’re coming down Edith pass as the deepest snow is on a steep section and you can slide your way down rather than trying to hike (you will sink up to your thighs!). Just keep an eye out for the next section of trail and after that there is just light snow cover to deal with. Highly recommended!

2 months ago

as of May 13th 2018, still covered in 3-4ft of snow once you reach cory pass from edith pass.

beautiful hike through the forest but had to turn around as it was impossible to see the trail!

Load More