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.

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hiking
9 hours ago

I hired a guide to bring me up to the summit of this amazing mountain. A large glacier awaits you at the top including amazing views of Lake Moraine, Mount Fay Glacier, Valley of Ten Peaks, Paradise Valley, Mount Lefroy and Mount Victoria. And because this is one of the highest peaks in the area the views are absolutely amazing as you can see everything!!!

Easy hike but truly stunning!

snowshoeing
10 days ago

Beautiful trail that was quite well maintained. Used micro spikes for the most part and glad we brought our snowshoes to complete the final 500-700m as there was a good foot of snow.

Excellent challenging trail, yet open to all able bodied hikers. In the summer I saw many people of all ages and physical ability going up the trail. Walk at your own pace and it's a great trail with an amazing reward.

hiking
13 days ago

Loved this hike. It was well marked and the scenery is stunning the farther up you go. Will also recommend the Little Bee Hive as well. Path can be done with hikers but recommend crampons and poles pending which route you take down from Lake Agnes.

I did this hike in 2017. The waterfalls are cool, but it is highly trafficked by tourists. Once you pass the upper falls and start on the trail to the ink pots, it is much nicer. Steep climb. When we reached the valley where the ink pots are, it was amazing. It felt like we had just stepped out into a beautiful valley from a short hike from our car, not remembering that we had hiked many kilometres to see it.

I really enjoyed this hike. We went Aug 1, 2018. The trail was not as busy as the Lake Agnes trail, it felt like a slower incline to hike, still a steep climb to the tea house. Beautiful views the whole way. The trail varied from switchback to hiking on rocks, and small pathways on dirt, it was awesome. We also continued on to the glacier viewpoint, it had spectacular views, it gets very rocky near the end, so tread carefully.

It’s a great hike. Steep climb all the way up. Always busy though. Nice to relax at the tea house. Lake Agnes is beautiful, with stunning views.

19 days ago

This hike is no joke and would go on most Top 10 lifetime hikes (certainly on mine). It’s incredible and the views compensate for the steep scramble on the last third (which takes hours to get up and down). Very intense and should not be taken lightly. Going down can be a bit more daunting than going up.

I recommend bringing gloves for the scramble as you will be on all fours for some of it. Start early since it will take all day (I was on trail for about 8 to 9 hours). I love hiking with my dog but would never take my dog on this trail (at least up the scramble).

hiking
20 days ago

Awesome! Nice late fall (with snow) trail with some slippery sections.

Hiked this one in the snow before dawn to try and watch the sunrise. Most of the view was obstructed by the trees, but there was a spot along a switchback where you could see the sky changing to bright pink just beyond the mountains. If you are staying in Lake Louise, this was a decent option for seeing the sunrise by the lake. We only went up to Mirror Lake because of the avalanche warnings up to Lake Agnes. The snow was packed down and the hike was easy with ice cleats, but they were likely unnecessary.

The view of the natural amphitheater at the end was well worth the steepness of the trail and the snow. We went up without snowshoes, but luckily some snowshoers had gone ahead of us and packed down some of the trail. The footprints ended at the start of the amphitheater, maybe 200m from the end of the trail, but the view was already incredible so it was no loss. The snow was knee deep for the last half kilometer or so. The trail had few others on it, even on the parts along the lake (although there are many sightseers coming off buses at the trailhead parking lot).

Great hike with an incredible view at the end. If you are looking for a moderate winter hike in the area this is a great choice. The path to the falls had several groups on it and was busy for a winter trail, but once you passed the upper falls the trail was empty. The view of the mountains from the inkpots was perhaps more incredible than the inkpots themselves. The snow was packed most of the way. Ice cleats were helpful, especially when going down.

Great trail, hiked on 11/18. Packed snow most of the way, would recommend crampons. Used poles, but not necessary. Worth making the trek up to the tea house (closed) for a great view and serenity. Would recommend snowshoes if you were to continue on to little beehive lookout.

hiking
24 days ago

This is a beautiful hike any time of year. While the tea house is closed, it’s still worth the trek, which is a steady and moderately steal climb. The views are breathtaking.

Beautiful Hike! It is a relatively short hike however it is quite the incline the majority of the way and if you are used to living at sea level you might find breathing a little more difficult! All in all a great experience.

Loved this trail! Great view and away from the large crowds.

Easy hike, lovely views in the canyon - get here early as the trail gets busy!

Took the fam here last year, was awesome, busy but awesome.

Completed Nov. 12-18, mild winter conditions.

Epic trail for advanced hikers. (See bottom to skip details and for conclusion)

Easy to get to, park at bow falls parking lot and walk past the golf course and head right to start. The beginning 1/3 of the hike is very easy, trail is obvious and easy to follow. Moderate incline.

The next third spices things up, trail starts to go up and down before hitting the switchback portion. Once at the switchbacks the intensity increases and the incline gets much greater, but the views get better!

Then you hit the last third and this is where things get seriously real. Once you go through the gully and onto the dragonback, the trail gets extremely intense. Gets difficult to follow the trail (especially with snow on the ground), but all you’re really doing is scrambling up so it’s not a big deal. Lookout for the yellow markers on the trees.

At this point, be prepared to be on all fours for the last 1.5hrs as you get closer to the top. This is a real scramble and NOT good for the faint of heart. As you reach the peak the incline nears practically vertical. You are on loose rock and footing is tough. Every 10 steps you’ll need a break. The peak will appear close, but it’s a tough and draining couple hundred meters.

Conclusion: Epic hike, epic views. Don’t go with your fam for a casual sightseeing hike, or if you’re not confident in your abilities. This is a hike for those who want to conquer. Plan for a 6-8 hour round trip in the winter. Hiking Boots mandatory, spikes are a good idea. Pack for wind/cold at the top. Bring lots of food. Have a blast, it’s a hell of a hike.

Easy, beautiful hike with tons of wild flowers in the Summer!!

Nov 3, 2018
Johnston Canyon was awesome—is great if you love water. The river through the canyon was beautiful. Easy hike on paved trail. The trail to ink pots was a bit more difficult, but not too intense. We rented crampons and made heavy use of them (lots of steep icy inclines). The ink pots are nestled in a valley next to the upper river. While not as bright blue as we expected due to the cloud cover, they were still amazing. The surrounding mountain views are awesome too—we sat for a while and had a snack before making the trek back.

hiking
1 month ago

Nov 2, 2018
Great hike, short (relatively) but uphill all the way. There had been some fresh snow when we were there, so it wasn’t too slick, but I imagine you would want crampons on a typical winter day, especially if you’re making the push past Mirror Lake to the tea house. Lake Agnes was covered and it was super windy up there, so we didn’t stay long before heading back down. Awesome views of the beehives, the valley, and Lake Louise from spots on the trail!

hiking
1 month ago

Steady incline to the tea house (closed). Lots of packed down snow so made it slippery in spots due to the incline. Some beautiful scenery along the way looking down on Lake Louise from the trail.

Actually been on the ridge above the'high point' and viewed on to the other side. Its lil steep but no dramatic cliffs until the ridge.

hiking
1 month ago

Lots of snow up there yesterday. Micro-spikes/crampons were absolutely needed. Few people on the trail because of the snow.
Snow makes this more difficult to get up to the top. Both Mirror Lake and Lake Angus covered with snow.
I would like to do this again in the spring/summer.

Lake Agnes views are SPECTACULAR. Easy and heavily trafficked gravel trail with some wooden stairs. Bring cash for the tea house.

After seeing Johnston Canyon, you can continue the uphill and slightly monotonous trail to the Ink Pots. The Ink pots are pretty cool and there’s a steam near them, but I would spend time hiking elsewhere if I had it to do over again.

Hiked on 11.1.18
Microspikes and poles up to the tea house. Heard multiple avalanches..Attempted to walk to the lookout point but turned around about 3/4 of the way due to high snow, unsure footing and avalanche risk.
Overall excellent hike had the whole area to ourselves just be prepared.

This this one about 3 weeks ago. Loved Johnston Canyon! Was a tiny bit disappointed with the Ink Pots, but still a very beautiful place.

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