Explore the most popular backpacking trails in Banff National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Easily one of my favourite hikes! Not too difficult. Worth it to go all the way up to Harvey’s pass!

beautiful definitely worth the trek up... just keeping going and be patient and anyone can make it.

Didn't quite do this trail, ended up taking North Molar pass east to Fish Lakes. Leads you up higher over the pass and down the other side. Still an excellent out-and-back trip (camping @ Fish Lakes is very nice).

We started from the paradise creek parking lot then went to giants steps and over sentinel pass. It is very difficult but well worth it.

backpacking
3 months ago

I’ve hiked to this lake starting from the trailhead. It’s long, but varied with wonderful views. There is an alternate exit that leads to a rockwall and chimney, to a couple of stunning lakes that you can see in the distance when you hike in on the main trail. Definitely will be hiking this again.

hiking
3 months ago

I really liked this one, pleasant grind up to the lake. Needed to switch to snowshoes once at the base of Black Brett, the snow gets DEEP. Had to bail on the plan to get to Harvey's Pass as going through the trees with the deep snow was too unstable to walk through.

Will be back in the summer to tackle the pass and the summit

hiking
4 months ago

Awesome trip. Trail up the hill is well packed so microspikes best. Once you hit the upper bowl snow is pretty deep so snowshoes would be better. To go to Bourgeau lake veer left at the meadow. If there are trails heading straight towards the trees then right, they are heading to Harvey pass.

on Bourgeau Lake Trail

5 months ago

Hike it two days ago. It was a great trail up hill all the way. Hour prior to the lake we hit 15 inches of snow but persevered so glad we did. Look forward to doing it again earlier in the season,

trail running
7 months ago

Ran 2 miles out 2 miles back on this trail. Very nice, great views. Would love to do much more.

Agree with previous reviews re: worth the effort to finish out the trail. Perfect day!

backpacking
7 months ago

This was my first backpacking experience and I would definitely say it was an awesome to start with. I would not have rated it as 'hard' as many sites consider it to be a beginner hike. It took us 4 hours from the gondola (Pro-tip : take the gondola to sunshine village and hike from there). Don't waste energy by carrying tons of water, buy the chlorine pellets and fill up from the river.

Great hike didn't quite make it to the top but next time

The hike is stunning with beautiful views despite a rain-filled second day that led us to hike from Baker Lake towards Skoki Lodge and then back to the parking lot all in one day. The only downside is that we lost our GPS Rhino radio along the trail somewhere between Deception Pass and the Fish Creek parking lot. If anyone finds it please comment as we'd really like it back. Many thanks in advance!

hiking
7 months ago

While there is a lot of hiking through the trees to get to the lake, the views and variation from the lake to Harvey Pass are well worth the effort.

Hike leading up to Bourgeau is pretty easy. Awesome views of the lake, but turn around and get the view of the valley. Really cool. Highly recommend the additional 1.5 miles up to Harvey Lake and Pass. You will see 3 additional lakes!!! It's pretty steep though leading up to the second lake. A bit of a rock scramble, but doable. Explore the paths on top of the Pass for some awesome views!!

hiking
7 months ago

Did the first half of the trail in April to the base of the Aylmer Pass trail. Loved the scenery - saw lots of deer and goats (and no bears!). Will definitely be coming back to do it again in September!

Beautiful route with steep mountain passes, pretty alpine meadows, glaciers & crystal clear lakes. We hiked the loop over two days in a clockwise direction, camping overnight at Merlin Meadows; 16km on day one, 21km on day two. Would definitely recommend!

hiking
7 months ago

Highly recommend continuing the extra ~3km past Bourgeau lake up to Harvey lake.

This was day 1 of an overnight camping trip to Molar Creek Campground (Mo-16)

THe hike is an in and out type route.
It is a gorgeous hike.

Beware the campground is really hard to find as it is across the river.
There is only one sign.

Follow the GPX and you will find, guarantee!
Bring some water shoes, you'll need them.

backpacking
8 months ago

Hiked the trail with my 8 year old son. Spent first night at Baker Lake and second night at Merlin Meadows. All around great experience, lots of wildflowers, amazing alpine valleys and lakes. Challenging but doable for most.

Uphill all the way without views until the waterfall (which was lovely). We turned around there.

hiking
8 months ago

Great picnicking at the pass!! Unreal views in all directions!!

hiking
8 months ago

Take lots of water. It's a long steady climb to the incredibly beautiful Healy Pass (7.9km) then a steep down hill to the Egypt Lake shelter (3km). Yes, that means a 3k steep climb back out. Best for an over night at the lake or very early start/return. Tip: campsite #14 is full of large rocks. Best for small tents.

hiking
9 months ago

Overall, a great day hike. My wife and I went all the way up to Harvey Lake (and I went a little further up to the pass overlooking the next range of mountains) and it took us a little over 6 hours. We are in good shape but we weren't exactly running down the trail.

I'd give the hike 5 stars but the first few kilometers aren't much to see as you're walking through the trees. It's a nice path, wide and well-maintained, with a moderate incline. About halfway up it gets steeper but not too bad. The views once you reach the lake are fantastic! I'd highly recommend going a little further up to Harvey Lake. We saw a small herd of mountain sheep up there.

hiking
9 months ago

Such a beautiful day hike. There are a few lakes to stop and enjoy along the way to the top of the mountain. Some scrambling, but nothing extreme. I'd easily do this hike again.

hiking
9 months ago

Great hike! Challenging but not crazy difficult. Definitely spend the extra time hiking beyond Bourgeau and up to Harvey Lake if you can; the view over towards Sunshine is great. Patches of snow were still around between the Bourgeau and Harvey Lakes but packed down enough by others that it wasn't anything to worry about. The scramble after Bourgeau Lake was fairly steep and loose small rocks made grip a bit lacking sometimes coming back down, just take your time. We didn't have any, but hiking poles would help!

My wife and I did this in 7h 20m with a few stops along the way for snacks/lunch and to take in the views. If it helps with context, we're fit enough that the "Moderate" rating of this trail I'd say is accurate, but at a guess if you're extremely fit and/or run part of this you could probably do close to 6h return. If you are less fit or want to take your time appreciating everything around you, maybe plan for 8-9h round trip.

Amazing views, alpine lakes, snow capped peaks. Loved the Skoki Loop and little side trip to Skoki Lakes (Zigadenus and Myostosis). We stayed two nights at Baker Lake and day hiked the loop. Only downside to the trail is the first 4km, which are on a gravel access road... otherwise a fantastic trail and backpacking circuit!

hiking
9 months ago

Very steep final section was a bit tricky but late June snowpack and small bergy bits floating in the turquoise lake were well worth the effort. Don't go up without plenty of water, bear spray and wind proof clothing - it's a lot cooler up top.

hiking
9 months ago

Amazing views. One of the best hikes in Banff. It is long so make sure to bring food and water and have lots of time. Muddy in sections and snow in other areas but very manageable and safe.

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