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Great little trek in summer. Not much of to see unless you do the small 700m stroll at the top

Crowded but safe. easier trail for friends

Easy beginner hike. Gorgeous views.

Great hike. Path is snow packed with very little ice right now, so could probably do it easily enough without spikes, but certainly easier with them. Get up there early to avoid the crowds, and you're in for a treat! Some amazing views on the way up, and the crowds really thin out once you get past the Upper Falls and head to the Inkpots. When we got to the Inkpots there was only one other couple there, so very peaceful! I just started hiking this past year, so certainly not a strong hiker, and this trail took us about 3 hours, including stops for photos and lunch.

did this trail on one of my last days in Banff and it was really beautiful!

on Sulphur Mountain Trail

hiking
9 days ago

We hiked this trail in early June 2018 and, in the last 25% of the trail, there were snow and icy patches. Allow 1.5-2 hours one way up if you're reasonably fit and have good shoes, and 2-3 hours if less so.

This is an extremely rewarding hike through a shaded switchback dirt trail that will reward you with an even more breathtaking view all along the summit ridge! Amazing! Throughout the climb, we found plenty of openings through the trees to enjoy the view of Banff below.

Some parts do get steep as you near the summit. I would highly recommend hiking shoes with good traction and hiking poles, especially if there are chances of snow and icy patches. I would advise checking the weather the night before before hiking, especially if you have limited hiking experience or are with children and the elderly. It can prove challenging and bit scary when things get slippery.

hiking
10 days ago

It was a wonderful hike, I truly enjoy the experience. Beautiful views!

Tunnel Mountain is a short 4 km hike to an amazing viewpoint on top of the mountain overlooking the town of Banff and surrounding scenery.

The trail began from Tunnel Mountain Drive in Banff (Google Map it). It followed along long, nicely graded switchbacks along the side of the mountain through the forest. Some of the switchbacks were steeper than others and some of them leveled out which provided a chance to catch your breath. There were some glimpses of the views along the way through the trees.

The best views could be seen from the top of the mountain at the end of the trail. There were some bare rocks surrounded by forest which were perfect places to sit and admire the views overlooking Banff and the surrounding mountains and valleys. It was beautiful!

Would recommend this short hike for a good leg workout and opportunity to see great views.

The hike to the Ink Pots starts along Johnston Canyon and is around 10 km round-trip. I arrived to the Johnston Canyon parking lot early in the morning (around 7 am) and was one of the first people there. I hiked here in July 2017.

Hiking Johnston Canyon was gorgeous in the morning and it was so peaceful being almost completely alone with nature on the trail. It was a challenging but rewarding hike to natural bubbling pools of water and amazing views.

After the Upper Falls, the trail began to climb out of the canyon. It was a pretty steep incline for most of the way to the Ink Pots and since this was my first major day hike upon arriving in Banff from the Canadian Prairies, I found it to be quite challenging and exhausting. The trail continued to gain elevation as it passed through the dense and lush forest which was beautiful and so peaceful. I was alone on the trail for most of the hike which was amazing. There was an opening in the trees at one spot along the trail which provided incredible views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

From this point to the Ink Pots (about 1.4 km), the trail leveled out and then descended to the final destination which my legs were very thankful for!

The trail then opened up to a beautiful meadow surrounded by mountains with a river flowing through it and a collection of natural pools of turquoise coloured water, which bubbled up from deep inside the Earth’s core called the Ink Pots (you will see circles in the sand at the bottom of the pools which look like blots of ink and this is where the water bubbles up from). There were some wooden boardwalks and trails through the area leading to each pool, where you could get a variety of amazing views and great photo opportunities. The scenery was breathtaking!

I found this hike pretty challenging and strenuous, as it was mostly a steep and gruelling uphill climb after the Upper Falls to the Ink Pots, but definitely worth it. Hiking downhill most of the way back to the trailhead felt AMAZING.

The trail along Johnston Canyon to the Upper Falls gets quite crowded and busy around late morning during the summer season but very few people continue on to the Ink Pots, so hiking this trail will likely be a peaceful experience. I would still recommend starting early though in order to get a parking spot at the Johnston Canyon trailhead (be there for around 7 am or 7:30 am), as it took me a good 4 to 4.5 hours to complete the hike including the MANY stops that I made along the way to catch my breath, take photos and enjoy the scenery.

Make sure to bring a snack to enjoy at the Ink Pots and lots of water!

Hiked to Inkpots via Johnston Canyon. Trail is well packed. Bring microspikes (no need for snowshoes just spikes). Falls were busy. I didn't stop just went straight to the Inkpots. Beautiful views today. I would recommend going through Moose Meadows if you're looking to avoid the crowds (not sure on Moose trail conditions there though)

Very few people beyond the upper falls. Had the trail to myself for portions. Overall easy hike if you are an avid hiker. You can hear avalanches in the distance which is cool.

Hiked down to the rock. Make sure you have spikes on to prevent a fall. Cool to see it up close.

Top safety rating for me; trails are well defined and signs are everywhere, it’s definitely worth the hike down to the famous rock located at the second right down closer to the water, you’ll know it when you see it. Photos are great but not as astonishing face to face. The trail up to the Ink Pots is well worth dodging the crowds for a moderate to easy treck up to the Ink Pots where you can eat lunch or just to wander some more. Kind of sucks you gotta pay the Banff Parks Fee just to go to the canyon. Still a top notch hike and definitely one I recommend for most ages and hiking abilities. I will do it again!

Great hike, views are awesome took some time at the top to find the paintings but worth it.

Want to save yourself 65$? Skip the gondola and hike up (if you’re like me though and very out of shape be prepared for a tough one). All up hill but once you get to the top you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment.. especially when you look around and see all the suckers who paid way to much to get to the top!

I’m not entirely sure why this is such a popular hike. Maybe it’s because it’s not too challenging. Maybe it’s because the falls are pretty, or maybe because it’s not a terribly long “hike”.. The worst part of the experience is that you’ll be fighting crowds for views and hiking space. At least until you move on toward the ink pots. Likewise, the ink pots were not overly thrilling either, even if neat and hypnotic.

After the falls, you won’t get great views until you descend into the valley where the ink pots are. From there it is significantly prettier, and I think I’ve read that there are trails beyond. I’d recommend seeing the ink pots if you’re already tolerating the mass of tourists at the falls. It’s a good hike to get your legs and lungs adjusted before tackling harder hikes.

I think I’d only recommend this trail if you’re new to the area and need something to get you acclimated to the inclines and altitude. It’s not difficult by any means, but does include a bit of elevation gain. On either side you’ll have good views of Ha Ling and EEOR (which are much better hikes), and you’ll get a satisfying view of the waterfall the lakes are feeding as you climb. The true beauty of this hike is the crystal clear lakes.

Pushing past the lakes will lead you to petroglyphs and the reservoir above, which is pretty in its own right, giving you a good view of the mountains beyond. Occasionally I have seen mountain goats/sheep? near the top of the trail, and extremely friendly chipmunks. There are a few popular rock climbing sections as well that are accessed via this hike. Altogether, some nice views, although not the best by any means.

Great quick hike! There wasn’t much snow and we probably didn’t need our crampons. The switchbacks aren’t too steep and the view at the stop is breathtaking on both sides! We got there around 845am and omg saw a few people on the way up. We finished the hike at 1030am and there was a lot more people on the way up.

Breathtaking view on the top

Was a last minute hike that we didn’t prepare to do, but was worth ever minute. Fair amount of tree coverage and wide path. Very hilly most of the way.

walking
22 days ago

Nice short walk.

I just hiked the backside from the trail head near Sundance Canyon. I walked from downtown Banff, so it was about 6.5 miles total to the summit. I wish I’d had snowshoes in a few places because the snow was soft and nearly knew deep when I broke through in a few places. This was my first hike in the snow, so I’m not sure how to rate it, but it seemed about twice as hard at Tunnel Mountain which I did yesterday. It was absolutely beautiful!!!!

Same comments as the others. The first section is too busy but the frozen waterfall is worth dodging the traffic. Heading to the ink pots is more like a typical walk in the trees and good exercise. The ink pots themselves are neat but not nearly as interesting as previous comments would suggest.

Not closed!

The tougher trail is closed but the main trail is not. Very enjoyable and the lakes at the top of the hike are work the price of admission (tired legs)!

As of December 18th there was very little ice on the water so you can see the gorgeous blue green colors. Trails were a little slippery but I managed it in sneakers.

Enjoy

Well compacted snow trail. Good workout, awesome views at the top. $22 all you can eat and drink buffet with a free gondola ride down. Ideal.

Beautiful, quick hike. Directions within this map take you right to parking lot. Wasn't busy today and not too too much snow/ice. Some of trail was even dirt. Girlfriends managed to do without crampons, we saw a girl with uggs managing, however for piece of mind, I slapped on microspikes on way down. Lovely views at top.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful the whole way up. Not too hard. Took me an hour and a half to get to the top.

Amazing!!! Great place to train! Took us approximately 1-1:10hr fairly easy pace. Amazing in winter!

Easy hike but truly stunning!

Some of the parts of the trail were closed so it was up and down the same path to the mini lakes at top.

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.

Easy hike really close to Banff town.
No longer than 1 hour, not very steep but amazing views from the top both to the valley and the town.
They have several viewpoints along the way, and reaching the summit is easy. Great for beginners.
You can leave your car at the beginning of the mountain just by the cabins (free parking) and hike the road that leads to the actual trailhead for 10 minutes.
Totally worth the effort.

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