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

Waterfall Hikes Map
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hiking
snow
1 day ago

It was a great little hike with the family. Our 4.5 and 2.5 year old came along. We brought a sled and had fun with that as well. Really packed trails, this is a high traffic trail but still lots of fun. We found one troll, the kids loved it. Looking forward to do this trip in the summer as well! Jan 2019

Was packed with people and not a place for snow shoeing. My hopes were let down:( Hope the people I saw that were walking had a healthy time but again for myself I am happier with less people and using my snow shoes.

Good for everyone, great practice hike. Beautiful frozen waterfalls at the moment.

For a decent walk with a foot problem it was a beautiful place and not too difficult of a rise. Good muscle ache after the icy in places hike. Jan 2019

Crowded but safe. easier trail for friends

hiking
4 days ago

I've done this hike many time! It is a great hike for everyone! Very easy and family friendly to the first waterfall. The upper falls take a bit more effort but are equally as wonderful. Lovely views, flora, and fauna to be seen!

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.

10 days ago

Great little hike. Easy to do with kids. Beautiful waterfall. Keep your eyes out for the troll! :)

hiking
12 days ago

Great for a beginner!

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

Easy hike with a beautiful waterfall at the end!

nice, easy trail to do with a toddler in backpack

15 days ago

Fun, easy walk with the family. Nice place to bring a small camp stove and make hot chocolate at the falls.

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!

15 days ago

Nice enjoyable walk with beautiful frozen waterfalls

Fantastic snowshoe / winter hike!

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.

walking
16 days ago

Not challenging enough for me personally but a beautiful walk on a sunny day in the winter. Will definitely do again.

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!

My husband, son and 5 year old grandchild and I hiked about 2km out and back again. Beautiful views, blue skies but lots of snow. Rolling hilly path which was a bit of a challenge for a 5 year old. We will definitely be back to hike it again and hope to complete the full loop! Trekking poles were helpful. We hiked to Rawson Lake in the summer so seeing part of the path in winter was a beautiful change.

hiking
21 days ago

We have only done it in the winter but falls are cool frozen. It is easy to connect to Hay Meadow (cross cutline as per map and turn right at little pump shack and follow river) it will lead back to the same patking lot. creating an oval. I like meadow last as flat and easy. both parts are pretty.

21 days ago

Really easy trail and very quick. Lots of traffic though so get there early. Do the hike to Upper Falls! You’ll see signs for it along the trail. It’s about a 20 min hike uphill but when we got there there wasn’t a single person.. where as when we arrived at Troll Falls there was about 30 people. No need for crampons or poles at the time we hiked. (Late December)

trail running
22 days ago

Beautiful trail along the canyon to the falls. Be sure to take the trail down the the bottom of the falls with the rope. And the bathrooms were open at the campground.

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.

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.

Beautiful easy trail!

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.

Wear good hiking shoes and bring poles if you're planning on going up on the ridge. I hiked this back in September when it was raining/snowing. I tried to make it up on the ridge, but it was way too slippery and dangerous without poles. Rawson Lake is beautiful though so it was still worth the hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Love this trail. Easy and beautiful. So many falls.

hiking
1 month ago

Easy hike, we’ll signed and maintained...fantastic weather, highly recommend going on after the first falls.. pretty payoff at trail end

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