Explore banff trails - 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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Completed on the 16th of October. The initial 5-6kms of forrest is nothing special. However, once you break out into the meadows you get some spectacular views! They make it worthwhile.
The trail is covered in snow/ice at this time of year. Cleats were a big help.

19 hours ago

Amazing trail, as everyone has said it's not easy. I took the clockwise route up to cory pass but the snow was so thick at edith pass I couldn't tell where the trail was. if you're going to attempt this hike in this season I would strongly recommend crampons and poles. the elevation gain is intense and coupled with snow and ice it makes for quite a treacherous climb. the scrambles in the snow were interesting but definitely manageable. again. crampons, wouldn't have been able to complete this hike without them. No bears but saw lots of tracks!!

Completed this hike on the 15th of October. Provides some breathtaking views, and only takes 30-45 minutes to reach the peak. Great reward for little effort! :)
As mentioned, it can be a bit slippery. However, no ice cleats needed, just take care.

hiking
1 day ago

Did this hike at sunrise 10/13. We had yaktraks but didn’t need them. Quick little summit great for a morning hike from lowed by breakfast in town.

October 9
Cool hike, great views of the canyone and walking right above it on the path and grates. Very icy though, high fall risk, crampons suggested. The only problem with this hike being the amount of people there (high) and the amount of people falling and basically scrambling not to fall because of the ice.

Lovely hike but you will want micro spikes especially for the trek up to the upper Falls. So many people slipping and sliding without them. Parking was no problem at 9:30 in a Thursday. Not crowded at all. But bring spikes!

hiking
5 days ago

Very nice trail despite the snow. Colors are still amazing! I’d rate this trail as moderate as the ascension was kinda smooth.

Easy hike. Current snowy/icy conditions add a little more difficulty to get up to upper falls. Not as crowded due to overcast weather and trail conditions.

Did this hike on 10/9/18 lots of ice because of the Early snowfall this past week the hike was easy and the views were spectacular a great in town hike if you just have a half a day and need something fun to do.

V nice super easy slipped a bunch icy as tits.

This is a very easy trail that is paved most of the way with handrails! The waterfalls are beautiful - however this is such a well know place make sure to get up super early to beat lots of crowds or try going during the week.

Really enjoyed this hike not to difficult and had great views at the top we hiked on 10/8/18 in a light snow fall lots of ice so crampons were needed to be safe.

hiking
8 days ago

Easy loop with a beautiful view over the lake.

hiking
10 days ago

Family friendly hike, a view of the Banff townsite at the end.

hiking
10 days ago

Family friendly up until the canyon, there is a bike rack right before you go through the canyon. FYI, Discovery Pass gives you free access to the Cave and Basin

Great trail! Just very very icy. Only could make it up because of railings. If you don’t have spikes, very difficult with snow/ice. Otherwise would be very easy. Can’t wait to come back and do again.

This is just as amazing as one can find anywhere worth going will not be disappointed

Love hiking at Sunshine so peaceful and the views are amazing larch especially wonderful to watch as they turn golden and shed their needles flowers in spring and fall can highly compare to many other hikes but hard to compare Sunshine s Latches and trails

My review is from the perspective of an amateur landscape photographer.

The trail is ranked as moderate and that's an accurate rating. I'm 62 and in good health didn't have any trouble complementing the hike. The highlights of this hike are the lower and upper falls and the meadows at the end of the trail. ( If you are exhausted from just hiking the lower falls then you should consider turning back. The trail gets steeper from there)

You'll need a tripod and perhaps a ND filter to capture both the lower and upper falls with the "flowing" water effect. You'll also need lots of patience as this is a very popular hike and there is very little room to setup a tripod without someone bumping into you. But if is worth the effort.

If you have made it to the Upper Falls and you still have lots of energy, then you should proceed to the "Ink Pots" . Personally I find the ink pots nit to be very photogenic but the valley/meadows they sit in is one of the prettiest I've ever seen. You have a large meadow surrounded by snow capped mountains with a glacially fed stream running through the middle. I spent two hours just wondering around shooting various compositions, having a great time.

One caution: These are the Canadian Rockies. You need to be prepared for cold weather even in the summer

Highly recommended.

Easy hike up, even with the snow. A little slippery in places on the way down but round trip including stops for photos only took 1 hr 40 min. Beautiful views, moderately trafficked on this weekday afternoon.

Very easy to access and clearly marked. A well-trodden path that could easily accommodate groups, kids, or dogs. We hiked this in the fall, so the upper 1/3 was icy with snow across the path, would recommend boots with good grip and potentially hiking poles for the slippery descent with the fall ice and light snow. Great views and fantastic fall colours

Easy hike with spectacular views. The path along Johnston canyon was crowded but views are worth it. Strongly recommend continuing on to the ink pots as they are a wonderful natural phenomenon.

Easy hike, canyon was nice but all the way to the canyon is paved.

These canyon trails are just magnificent! Such an amazing walk. Make sure you go up close to the falls!!

Beautiful snowy hike mid September 2018. Definitely happy I had good waterproof boots and hiking poles. The snow drifts at some points was 2 ft deep. Took several hours, but was worth it!

Johnston Canyon is always incredible to see. This time I ventured past the upper falls to see the Ink Pots. The trail is in a forested area so there’s not too much to see until you are almost at the Ink Pots. You will know you are almost there when you emerge from the forested area. You will be rewarded with an incredible view of an open valley with a river and mountains in the distance. The Ink Pots are lovely, and I think they would have been truly incredible had it been a bright sunny day. It was cloudy and rained for a good portion of my hike in late September. There are a lot of uphill and downhill portions on this hike so it can be challenging. Definitely worth the effort in my opinion. There are benches at the Ink Pots where you can sit and enjoy the view with a snack or lunch.

We went a little after lunch hour,the hike up to the lower and upper falls was a little busy but once you start heading towards the ink pots there was less traffic.The 5.7km hike was worth it after seeing the view.

20 days ago

Great hike. Started in clockwise direction stunning view of Banff and mountains. Pretty cool once you get to the saddle and hike through the snow for 2k. I'd recommend keeping on the left on the trails between km 1 and 4 as this is the most direct route but steeper. I measured the loop as 12.5 km in total for 5 hours of hiking. You'd want to be fairly fit taking this one on, as the elevation gain between km 1 and 4 is cruel but definitely worth it.

Great hike, but we found ourselves quite tired and didn’t make it to the ink pots...probably better to acclimate to the higher altitude before a hike. That said, the hike was more like a stroll, but with wonderful views. The most novice of hikers will enjoy this hike.

hiking
21 days ago

the ink pots were really cool, well worth the hike

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