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
18 hours ago

hiking
2 days ago

Please be aware that beyond Mirror Lake the trail is actually in avalanche terrain and not recommended in the winter!
Stay safe!

Crowded but safe. easier trail for friends

walking
5 days ago

If you want to get away from the crowds at the lake Louise front shoreline, take this for a little jaunt. Different perspectives of the lake, especially at the back shoreline. A loop is possible.

walking
5 days ago

A decent little walk. Something to bring the relatives on that don’t hike much. Agnes Lake is beautiful but the teahouse can get packed up pretty quick. Go early if you can.

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!

hiking
13 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.

Takakkaw Falls is a powerful and amazing waterfall to see in Yoho National Park. I visited in August 2017.

A winding and narrow paved road leads from the Trans Canada Highway cutting through the park to the waterfall which is located at the very end of the road. The drive was incredibly scenic as the road passed through beautiful lush forests with mountains all around and openings in the trees providing amazing views of the landscape. There was a series of intimidating-looking switchbacks up a steep mountainside along the road which were somewhat difficult to maneuver even with a small car (a 2-3 point turn is required), but a fun challenge. I even saw remnants of a recent avalanche along the road with huge piles of snow and broken trees.

It took roughly 30 minutes to arrive at the Takakkaw Falls parking lot along the Yoho Valley Road from where it stemmed off from Highway #1. The parking lot was small mostly full and I was lucky to find a spot in the afternoon. I could see and hear this powerful and spectacular waterfall and couldn’t wait to get closer!

From the parking lot, there was a short and well-trafficked paved path which crossed a bridge over a rushing river and wound through the trees with great views of the falls along the way before arriving at the base of Takakkaw Falls (it took about 10 minutes to get there). The waterfalls got louder and louder as I got closer and they were so powerful that I could feel the mist long before I even reached the base. The mountainous scenery surrounding the waterfall was so gorgeous and there were lots of places along the pathway to take photos of the views and the waterfall. The water plummeted at high speeds off the edge of a tall vertical cliff and into the river below. It was super windy, cold and wet standing at the base that I could only stand there for a few minutes before turning back as my camera was getting soaked. The sound of the falls was like thunder and it was incredible to experience and admire the waterfall while being SO CLOSE to and literally right in front of this breathtaking natural beauty! There were lots of large boulders off the main trail on a slope beside the falls that you could climb to get even closer, but I chose not to. The trail to the waterfall was quite crowded during my visit but not too overwhelmingly busy that it detracted from my experience, but if you arrived early in the morning you would probably be able to enjoy this place in peace.

Takakkaw Falls were a very impressive and stunning tall waterfall to see and there were plenty of great viewpoints of the falls for some amazing photos. This waterfall is definitely a must-experience when in Yoho! There are some picnic tables and washrooms near the parking lot of the falls as well. Make sure to wear a rain jacket because you will get wet at the base of the waterfall.

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!

The Edith Cavell Meadows is a spectacular hike with breathtaking scenery or the beautiful flowery meadows, glaciers and mountains - it was the highlight of my trip to Jasper.

I hiked here in August 2017. The trail starts off gently climbing a partially paved path along the Path of the Glacier. It leads to a viewing area overlooking the Angel Glacier and Cavell Pond, where the views are amazing and you feel so close to the scenery. But the views just keep getting better along the rest of the trail!

The trail then continues to climb uphill as it passes over the rocky moraine and then enters the subalpine forest before opening up to the beautiful meadows with colourful wildflowers above the treeline. There are stunning views of the glacier and mountains throughout the hike.

The mosquitoes were relentless and aggressive along most of the hike and whenever I stopped to take a photo or admire the views or rest my legs, they attacked me almost immediately, which was really unfortunate. I didn't bring insect repellent but it would have been a good idea.

I saw lots of hoary marmots along the hike as well, which were super cute. Before you reach the main lookout at the end of the trail, there is a junction with two options - an easier and a more difficult route. I took the easier climb as the difficult one looked much steeper and was pleased with that choice. I ended up taking the difficult path on the way down instead.

I heard three avalanches along the way to the top which was a pretty unforgettable experience. I finally reached the main lookout on the trail and was in complete awe at how gorgeous the surrounding scenery was. I felt so close to the mountains and the Angel Glacier. The views were breathtaking!

There is another optional trail to climb a very steep trail even higher up the mountain, but I chose not to do that. The hike was consistently and steadily uphill from start to finish, with some steeper sections and some gentler ones along switchbacks, but it was totally manageable for someone of good fitness. I did it, and I am from the flat Prairies where I never hike elevations like this. I recommend going slow and taking lots of breaks if you're getting tired and use hiking poles. They helped a lot, especially with going downhill. Also, bring lots of water and snacks as there is nowhere nearby to purchase anything. The temperatures get much colder and windier at the top of the trail, so wear warm layers as well.

In total, this round trip hike took me 3.5 hours to complete including all of my many stops along the way. If you are looking for a fantastic and incredibly rewarding day hike in Jasper (it takes about 40 minutes to get from town to the trailhead parking lot) with stunning natural beauty, I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend this one. It was the best hike I have ever done so far and I feel like very few hikes will compare to this one.

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!

Hiked 12/24/18. Great hike! Would definitely recommend bringing snow shoes if you plan to go all the way to the tea house.

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.

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.

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.

An easier hike with nice views. not many ups and Downs. the trail gets repetitive. Hiking the trail for a couple KM after Stewart Canyon has the satisfying views

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.

snowshoeing
1 month ago

I went there for snowshoeing and it was quite a cardio but really nice! The view at the end worth it. The tea house is close tho, don’t expect to be open. Definitely would recommend it!

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.

Easy hike but truly stunning!

snowshoeing
1 month 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.

hiking
1 month 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.

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.

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.

hiking
1 month 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.

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