hiking

views

walking

birding

nature trips

lake

forest

wild flowers

wildlife

trail running

kid friendly

snowshoeing

dogs on leash

river

Great trail for the whole family. Easy parking, basic bathroom facilities and easy climb. Great views and fun for all.

One of my favorite hikes in Kananaskis! A bit of a challenge to get up on the ridge but worth the effort. Pay attention at the end to find the exit to the parking lot, it's not well marked and we definitely missed it.

I didn't think there was a lot of information about this trail online, so hopefully some people will find this review helpful. My boyfriend and I did this hike on June 17, 2017. There is still a ton of snow on the trail so if you're planning on going in early summer be aware of that. I expect some of it never quite melts given the altitude. We even met some snowboarders, if that gives any indication of the snow situation.

The trail is unmarked. Park at the Highwood Meadows parking lot and follow the trail out. After a few minutes you'll see a sign that says "Fragile area: please stay on designated trails" and a trail that veers off the path you came from and goes beyond the sign. This is the trail to Pocaterra Cirque. Once you get into the forested area, it is fairly well-marked by orange ribbons at the moment. (Many thanks to those who went before us and blazed a trail through the snow.)

You'll be in a forested area for roughly 20-30 minutes. Very soon you will pop out of the tree line into some fantastic views. This is where the snow started getting fairly problematic for us. The only way to the cirque was across the snow-laden slopes. We stuck to where people had crossed before and left a trail, but the snow was soft and we kept sliding and falling, sometimes stepping thigh-deep into it in some areas.

It took us about 45 minutes to cross to the cirque. We would have loved to climb up to Grizzly Col but unfortunately our feet were soaked and starting to get quite numb, so we didn't think it was wise.

All in all it took us about 3 hours to do the hike, would've been less without the snow but more if we could have managed the extra climb. This is a great short and easy hike, though. Not a lot of effort for a great pay out. It was quiet as well. Other than the snowboarders we only saw two other hikers.

I'd love to come back when the snow has melted more. If you're attempting this in late spring/early summer bring water-proof shoes, an extra pair of socks, and gaiters if you have them! Your feet will thank you.

hiking
8 days ago

Hiked June 14, 2017. Constant variation in both incredible views as well as terrain. Snow and mud sections along most of the trail, most are quite easy to get around. The open Burstall Creek area section is somewhat challenging and time consuming as you navigate stream after stream, especially right before landing on the west side before the ascend. We only managed to hike a few hundred meters up the ascend before the snow was too deep for us to continue. We got rained on on the return, however it was well worth it due to the beautiful clouds moving around the mountains. Lots of parking, bathrooms and garbage disposal are in the parking lot.

hiking
10 days ago

Beautiful view of the lake. Snow was still high at the end of the trail causing a bit of a bottleneck when passing/crossing people.

hiking
10 days ago

WARNING: this trail was decommissioned in 2005 to turn the area into a grizzly bear sanctuary. The parks advise that you don't use it, or if you do, to bring bear spray and be bear aware. The trail starts with this warning sign basically blocking the trail head.