Explore Banff - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Banff Map
VIEW FULL MAP

Did it Oct23. From the top of Paradise Valley entrance, the path for the top is not hard to miss (missed it so I made another hour in the wood on wrong side od the mountain...). The view is magnificent, the at the time I did it, the last 200m of hike was in 100% snow/ice. Cleats were a must have. I met people without and they didn't make it to the top, too dangerous. I found it technical.

Do it in early or late summer. There is a bit of a false peak at the top but don’t be discouraged, keep going the view is worth it.

hiking
28 days ago

Absolutely beautiful view of moraine lake from a different perspective. It was only relatively difficult at the beginning (first ~2 km) due to switchbacks but it was pretty flat the rest of the time. If I do this again, I’d want to continue to Wenkchemna pass into Larch valley.

I was here yesterday before sunrise. Unfortunately the bridge was blocked off with closure signs. I thought it was opened up again for winter, I guess they have more work to do? the trail head was closed at the time I went.

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail, minor scramble at the top. But windy and chilly. Amazing views.

Trail closure extended for the winter season 2018/19. The early snowfall and smoke this year delayed the new trail alignment so it will be completed in spring 2019 then reopened!

Was still closed yesterday. Sign at trail head said closed until early October for trail maintenance. A local said next week for scheduled reopening... not 100% sure if they are planning to reopen on schedule? Anybody know?

Is this trail still closed? We are planning to go October 10. Would it be open by then?

Have done this hike about four times due to easy access and a well marked trail. Always bustling with tourists, so if you want a good seat at the summit either go very early or pop over to miners peak instead.

Sept 20- still closed :(

This is a good steady climb up. Made it to the Saddleback ridge before we turned back, snow was getting too deep for my footwear. Unfortunately with the clouds the views were obscured. Would definitely love to do this one on a clear day. Bit slippery on the way down due to the slushy snow.

The hike to Helen Lake is relatively easy/moderate for an experience hiker and offers beautiful views of Bow lake along the first 1.5 miles and then beautiful views of the adjacent mountains the rest of the hike. The lake was very pretty with beautiful mountain backdrops. The hike to the ridge line form the lake isn’t too bad, just steep and also offers very nice views. From there we turned right and submitted an easier “peak” to have a view out over what we just hiked. We then turned around and started the trek to Cirque Peak. I wouldn’t recommend doing that portion of the hike if you are scared of heights. I am a little bit and was able to manage the scary sections slowly and staying as far from the edge as possible. But there are a few sections that are more of a scramble then a hike. We also were climbing this while it was snowing so everything was a bit slick. Unfortunately we had to turn back 600m from the peak because the snow got to be too much, but during one break through of sunshine we could see the valley and the view was worth the effort! I will say the trail is difficult to see so follow the cairns people have built and when the “trail” splits stay to the right to keep going up.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked this trail on September 14, and it was snowing the entire time! Unfortunately couldn't see the views well, however the soft snowfall was extremely beautiful and peaceful. Took around 4 hours round trip. I wanted to go down to the water, although we were afraid we would miss the last bus out at 5:30 if we did that, so we just took a quick break at the top of the trail and turned back.

Need a challenge, bam, here you go! As a intermediate to advance hiker from Chicago/New Hampshire, this mountain was a doozy! You are climbing straight up on nice incline for the better part of 1.5 hours. Once you arrive at the Saddleback, it is a perfect spot to take a lunch break and prepare yourself for snow and some intense cliffs that lay ahead. The next part, that section where all the rocks/snow keep going up, yup, you are going there buddy! If you are afraid of heights, this is the part where you would turn back, if not, onward you go! I had to stop about 100 feet before the summit due to altitude sickness (it happens to some people above 8k feet and I was just shy of 9k) and noticed my breath becoming shallow, dizziness, so I told the others to go without me and they got to the summit about 15 mins later (I could see them from the top). No matter what, it was a great hike, and I hope to do it again one day! We spent around 6 hours doing the hike from the parking lot start to Lake Louise finish and def took our time and taking photos and resting. Take plenty of water, food, and hiking poles. Good luck!

Closed for another month :(

This ones on my top five under six. Beautiful quick incline all the way up, trails are quite clear; lots of foot traffic. If you make it to the flag at the peak the views are spectacular.
On a side note if you head right at the top you can also do Miners Peak so you can check off two amazing hikes in one day trip. Happy hiking.

Best super view in this area.
But it’s not a moderate trail for sure.
Don’t forget your stick.

Expérience incroyable! Quel ascension! Un vrai bonheur! La vue est incroyable!!

One of my all-time favourite hikes in the Rockies! So breathtakingly beautiful at the top.

I love this hike and was hoping to squeeze it in on sept 8th. Can anyone confirm if it’s open? I was there two weeks ago and the sign said it would be open by aug 28th.

Still closed on Sept. 6.

Thinking about hiking it Sept 8th, 2018. Can someone confirm the trail is still closed?

I got literally hooked into hiking right after I did Ha Ling last June. It was an amazing experience and spectacular view from the summit. Can't wait to do it again as soon as the new trail open

Let me preface this review by saying this trail, in my opinion, should NOT be rated moderate. The hike to Helen Lake is moderate for sure, but to summit Cirque Peak is certainly difficult/ hard. I have read other websites that state the same, and an experienced hiker from the area coming down the mountain said so too.
Also, the trail is not on any hiking map that we saw including books and the map from the start of the hike, and no signage. We could see tracks up the mountain but no idea how to get there. We went to the right of the lake, up to where you climb Dolomite Pass and then turned left turned Cirque peak and followed what looked like a foot path.
That being said, we didn't actually make it to the 'top', we got to about 3/4 of the way up and being pretty novice hikers without poles decided it just wasn't safe to go to the top and have to come back down. But my god the views were incredible. If you have the strength and endurance to get up there, you need to. Unbeatable. You can see for miles around, so many lakes, mountains of all sizes shapes and color; just amazing! Best hike we did in Banff by far.
The hike up to the peak is extremely steep, and make sure whatever way you come up, go down it! We tried to find an 'easier' path down but ended up basically just going to a cliff edge, then having to reroute.
Bring bear spray as it is bear country and make lots of noise. Lots of chipmunks and marmots as well.

hiking
2 months ago

Great views, a bit of smoke near Moraine Lake.
The trail does not easily reach Eifel lake and you need to scramble .5 km. to reach the water.

Get to the parking lot by 7am. It’s real, get there early.

CLOSED , no end date listted

Majestic - if you enjoy the journey with friends regardless of the destination then this trail is for you!

Love this hike. Takes you through multiple elevations of the valley. The last little scramble has been completed by many age groups, just take your time.

Superbe randonnée avec comme récompense en magnifique vue sur la vallée de la Bow et sur les glaciers au dessus du Lac Louise. Durée d'environ 5 heures et plutôt difficile.

Trail closed for maintenance, August 7-30. Barricaded at the trail head, don't attempt.

Load More