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

This is a beautiful hike.

Did this yesterday (Sept 28) and it was a nice, easy hike. Nice views of both falls on the way up and the light dusting of snow made the trees look even nicer. Went a bit around the lake, the low cloud cover obscured the views of the peaks surrounding the lake but was still beautiful. We were the first ones to the lake and it was very still and peaceful. No wildlife sightings. Walking through the burned out forrest for a large part of the hike gave this trail a different feel but you can already see the regrowth happening.

This is a steady climb all the way up with waterfalls on route. Most of the walk is through burnt forest (2017) but still spectacular and bears are easy to see. Once you arrive at the lake there is a 4 km walk around, if wanted. We were the first up today but passed 20 people approximately on the way down, but it is September. Could be busier in July/August. Take water ! Highly recommend.

1 month ago

Went yesterday, still a little smoky. Pictures aren't as clear when they come out. Biked the first 6.6 KM. from where we left our bike to the top is another 6.5km. On our GPS shows a little over 26km returns. took us forever to get up there, but it's definitely worth it. Unbelievable amazing and hard...

2 months ago

A pretty good hike to go on an adventure on. You can bike or walk the first 6kms or you can pre book a boat to start the trail. There is a bit of bushwhaking, the trees are pretty thick so be sure to make lots of noise. We encountered a grizzly in this area. The hike is set at a good incline, it's not very strenuous. There is a creek to fill up your water later on in the hike. The view at the top is phenomenal and well worth it. Being able to see the surrounding mountains and see so far out in the prairies is incredibly unique and breathtaking.

2 months ago

We biked to the trail head, nice mostly flat 6km ride. The hike itself is pretty steep, lots of people take horses up, but it’s still a very doable hike. The views at the top are spectacular!

Great little hike. Did it March of 2017. Lots of snow. Was quiet and beautiful.

Air quality still a little smoky in Waterton today but not bad. Burned areas are present over much of the trail but Bertha lake is still pristine. Burned forest areas are filling up with thimbleberries, colorful fireweed, and other plants and the views of Waterton lake and the surrounding mountains are opened up. Trail is very busy and it is difficult to get a photo without someone walking into it but I had no worries about bears or injury with so much potential help available so there’s the silver lining. Don’t let the burned areas keep you from doing this one. It is still well worth the trip.

Had a beautiful hike up to upper Bertha Falls and beyond. Hike starts out in shady pine forest but soon one is out in the open in the hot sun witnessing the terrible destruction of the 2017 fire. Continuing up the fairly heavily used trail, with children, dogs and some folks in flip flops, the ascent is fairly gradual taking you up to the beautiful falls. From there you can take a break, climb down a slope and cool off your feet in the water. From there on the trail gets steeper. Less than a mile from Bertha Lake, decided that was enough hiking in the heat (87 F) and turned around and hiked down. It was still a beautiful hike with views of Waterton Lake.

Challenging climb, especially once you get to the switchbacks. Hike has a little of everything: creek, waterfalls, alpine lake, big lake views, pine forest. Part of the forest was burned during the big 2017 fire. Overall, a great microcosm of Waterton Lakes hiking.

Climb to the top through the burnt trees , with great views of Waterton Lake make this a relatively easy day out

The switchbacks were a little hard on the 4 of us knees but the end was worth the climb. Such a beautiful little valley tucked away at the top of the mountain.

The hike was very crowded at the falls but once we continued past that point, the trail cleared up pretty quickly.

Id recommend this hike to my friends for sure!

Good hike - steep incline past the falls up to the lake but the lake is worth it. Took us 2.5 hours

3 months ago

Beautiful views! We actually hiked across the ridge to the Crypt Lake trail. We joined up with the crypt trail by the old campsite/outhouses just before the tunnel. There was a lot of scrambling but a great adventure if you are up for it. Wouldn’t recommend it for beginners or hikers with little experience with scree.

This hike has changed since the fire (more exposed) but still awesome! Bertha is still a beauty! Go early... I had the lake to myself and on the way back passed a bazillion people.

This was a fairly easy hike. Took our group about 3 1/2 hrs. This included a stop at the lake. Good time to start is early for the traffic picks up about noon.

I took my 7 and 8 year old sons on this hike yesterday. The section to the falls was easy for them, but the second steep section to the lake was a challenge (a welcome one). The lake was beautiful at sunset, but we did wind up walking a bit under the stars. Some sections were light enough by moonlight, but I was glad everyone had lights. I wish we’d had time to walk the perimeter trail. Beautiful trail with easy access from Waterton.

My god said closer to 12 km. Good steep climb up to lake.

3 months ago

We did this hike as a bike’n’hike’n’bike. The first six KMs were relatively flat so we opted to bring our mountain bikes and just send it until the trail got steep. The mountain bike ride was fun but in parts the trail became quite narrow. On the ride we noticed several patches of burned trees from the 2017 forest fires. We so frequently felt inclined to comment on the burnt trees that we ended up keeping tally of the number of times we felt like we needed to comment on it. The tally was 8.

After the bike ride we began to ascend the steeper section of the hike by foot. The trail was not hard to follow but was overgrown and had me wondering why the park did not take better care of it’s stuff (the trail). The bushwhacking lasted about 2KM until the elevation took care of the parks stuff for them and the path cleared up. From this point in the trail became progressively steeper but still not challenging. There was a significant amount of horse dung on the trail that had me questioning their diet. However, we were ok with dung as long as it was not bear dung.

The last 100m or so of elevation was fairly steep but relatively short. We ended up running into a couple who had ridden their horses up toll this steep section. I asked about their horse’s diet but they replied “that’s a personal question” so we went out separate ways.

The view from the top was awesome. You can see the Waterton townsite as well as something I was told was called “Chief Mountain Peek” which were both cool to see. All told the b’n’h’n’b took us about 6 hours round trip with a half hour lunch-break at the top.

5 out of 5 would recommend

Hiked this trail 3 weeks ago and days before the fire closure the year before. On a warm day the shelter from trees are gone and on our hike we had sun, rain, hail and thunder but still beautiful. Incredible to see how untouched the top of Bertha is.

3 months ago

Definitely take a bike for the beginning and the end it takes a lot of time off the trail. We were up first week of July and when you hit that peak the temp drops dramatically. Beautiful views and if you pause before the peak you can see Crypt Lake and it’s waterfall. Great hike for more experienced hikers especially with so few options in Waterton right now.

Hiked this trail with my dogs on-leash July 13th. The trail is great for dogs because there is opportunities to stop and allow them to drink.
We hiked all the way to the lake, it was beautiful and hot. Due to the fire there is no foliage to shade from the sun, so keep that in mind. Additionally, the trail can get dusty from the wind because of the lack of foliage.
Classic trail, busy and well maintained.

4 months ago

Great trail. On the hard side. If you submit remember you can walk the ridge peek to peek and get the rest of Vimy in one shot.

Awesome burnt and unburnt forest trail. Interesting to see how the fire went through.

Completed this hike yesterday, it was beautiful!! lots of wile life and stunning scenery❤

It’s open again after the 2017 wildfire. It’s crowded at the lower falls but once you go past that it gets sparse. It’s a constant uphill and lots of switchbacks. Gets downhill as you approach the lake. It gets windy at the lake. Good hike overall

My family went up to the lakes, it is a lot more difficult than my family has anticipated and the constant uphill was very hard on my mothers knees. We camped for one night and unfortunately we were at the campsite when the fire of 2017 started. No one had come to inform us or evacuate us. The scenery wasn’t that good compared to other trails in Waterton. I would not recommend this trail.

I went around the loop trail, around the whole mountain, the other side is a lot more difficult but the scenery is absolutely amazing, forests upon rivers upon fields of flowers, would definitely recommend this trail for anyone who enjoys the pure beauty of nature!

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