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

hiking
23 hours ago

Saturday 15th December 2018
We got to this trail at about 9am. We didn’t see anyone on the way up and quite a few people on the way back down! The trail we followed took us to the lake. The round trip took us about 3.5 hours.

We clocked this hike at just over 11km.

As the path is popular the trail is well walked so we didn't wear snowshoes. But spikes were needed on a few parts. We kept them on for the whole trek as the paths had enough snow on them.

The trail head starts on a road so use the toilets before the final turn. There is a toilet just before the lake too!

completed yesterday, don't go without micro spikes or crampons, pretty slippery but also very doable.amd rewarding. if you wear proper snow gear then it's not very cold at the top!

Nice, easy trail with very gradual elevation gain. You are mostly in the forest until you reach the lake. Good for quick a winter hike. As of Dec 8/18, the trail is hard packed snow - no snowshoes or traction devices needed, though this might change over the next few days as the snow melts and refreezes.

Completed on December 1. Easy hike with great views. Trail was packed so no need for snowshoes yet.

hiking
16 days ago

Gorgeous views of Spray Lakes for the majority of the hike! We had to cut the hike short by a couple hundred meters as the snow became too deep. Definitely going to add this one to the list to do again in the summer!

hiking
16 days ago

Great easy hike to take your dog!

hiking
28 days ago

To much snow to continue to Sparrow didn’t have the snow shoes on us - so we went up Reads instead! Great day! Not to windy not icy great Sunday hike - will be back to do the full route.

hiking
1 month ago

I did this hike for the first time this morning with our Dog Club, it was easy and enjoyable. Non-hikers commented that it was approachable and the most experienced felt that the scenery to Karst Spring was well worth the first few boring kilometres. Bonus, it was nice and quiet at this time of the year with a few inches of snow on the ground plus the sun was out for most of our trip.

1 month ago

Really nice and easy but don’t go there when it’s cloudy , the end of the trail was completely fog :( but still nice hike for beginner !! I enjoyed it with my dog and women ! It took us 3 h back and forth

Fun hike always have mountain beavers (marmots) screaming at me

Short and nice. Windy but not as bad as windtower! Will go back in the summer for a change of season!

Love this hike. Did it in the summer and hit a rain storm on the way down which wasn’t too great. Other than that super fun, forest, loose rock and boulders lead up to amazing views.

Windy. So very very windy, which makes sense with the name. Bring layers, last 200 m is cold and gaiters are key as snow is knee deep up top. Pretty hike though!

hiking
1 month ago

More time spent in the trees than Chester Lake hike, but pretty nonetheless. Far fewer people too. The trail was hard packed and we didn’t need snowshoes or cleats.

hiking
1 month ago

A really easy hike, lots of snow (winter wonderland)

Oct 27, 2018 - A marvelous hike!

Snowing when we got to the trailhead but cleared up by the time we got to the lake. Spectacular views but didn’t stay long due to the cold. Trail was snowy but well packed. Won’t be long before we’ll need snowshoes though. Will definitely do this again. If you’ve done Chester Lake- this is longer but a bit flatter. Worth the effort!

snowed all the way and close to a white out at lake so didnt get that full "wowee" feeling at the lake - will definately do it again in spring/summer. loved walking through the snowy forest.. no ice on trail (all snow). had spikes on. dogs loved it - winter wonderland! started at 9am - first tracks.

Crazy Wind! Hence the name haha Windtower! Beautiful views the whole way up. It’s fine to do in the winter - just prepare ahead of time, and bring your spikes if going to the peak!

Awesome hike for the fall, since climb is all south-facing there was almost no snow until 3/4 of the way up. Conditions were dry and summer like with recent warm weather. Threw the gators on for the top portion but could have easily walked around deeper (mid shin) patches.

hiking
1 month ago

You don’t even have to hike lots to see gorgeous views. The trail is not clearly marked and it does intersect with other bike friendly trails. This isn’t bike friendly. I wish there were more signs along the trail because it is easy to deviate off it. It’s also not very popular which means moments of undisturbed quiet.
There were snow packed areas towards the top where there wasn’t much sunshine but nothing scary. Just have good non slip footwear. I didn’t need poles and crampons.
Just like its name, the top was windy. But spectacular views.

A total grind on the way up, with little change in landscape; but stunning views from the summit make it absolutely worth it!
Current conditions are 80% clear, but considerably slippery/wet/steep sections make crampons a good idea. The 'first summit,' makes a great stopping point for those who don't want to make the final push to the top.

Note on the Start:
I read very conflicting information on the start of this hike. If you park directly at the end of the reservoir, the start is about 200m walking back towards Canmore. It begins between the two scree fields, underneath two power poles with signage for keeping dogs on leashes. The trail goes quickly up into the trees and appears to split. To the left is a large sign warning of unexploded bombs, to the right, a small land surveying post. (You can go either way - we did both).

Left goes on a trail up into the trees, and eventually up and to the right, overtop the first cliff-section, on a decently well-traveled trail (currently pretty icy). Right goes directly up (and may save you 15 minutes) but is a scramble. Like everyone has stated, it's pretty hard to get lost on this hike, and once you get over the first cliff it's easier to find your way.

The view of the rest of the Rundles from the summit serves as a great reward at the end. Leave your notes from the day in the Memorial Box at the top.

hiking
2 months ago

October 11th 2018:

Such a good hike. Snow covered trails, kind of slippery at the beginning, cramps and poles recommended. starts off pretty steep, a bit of a slog, last 30 mins of the hike to the summit is slow and arduous, but at least the snow is packed and easily followed. moderate to difficult.

Fairly new to hiking and found this to be a perfect adventure for my skill level. Amazing views of Spray Lake and the surrounding mountains. The pass was snow covered as was most of the trail up. There are a few steep and wet spots where the trail really thins out. We had a beautiful sunny day but would have liked cleats in parts. Nice to see the Wind Tower peak so close but would not want to attempt summiting that this time of year.

on West Wind Pass

hiking
2 months ago

Went on Saturday Oct 13 (the year winter came early). Snow covered the trail the whole way with some bare spots on the bottom 3rd.
The trail was well packed and easy to see and navigate till the top. At the top, it appeared to be less traveled and then the trail disappeared on the last little bit. Here we had to trudge through some deeper snow (would sink to your knees roughly) to get to the other side and see the valley.
I'd recommend cleats and gators. Weather was cold and windy at the top.
As mentioned before, park right at the trail head as opposed to driftwood parking lot.
Did the whole trip in 3.5hrs, that included walking around exploring at the top and having a lunch/beer! Great hike for beginners that want to step it up a notch.

trail running
2 months ago

Ran this trail yesterday as an alternative to ha ling as it is still closed.

Trails are pretty good, some icy spots on the way up. I used crampons in these areas just to be safe, but doable with good quality hiking boots/trail runners. I Definitely needed to bring wind stopper pants though, my insulated tights were not enough near the summit. Amazingly clear views.

hiking
2 months ago

Well packed snowy trail with great scenery... gets you up into the Alpine quickly and the views at the end are phenomenal! I will definitely be back in the summer

Did this at sunrise. Lost the trail on the way up. Got the what we thought was a fork and went left, should have stayed right. It was so dark when we started i only saw 1 blue square the way up. Saw them all the way down.

snowshoeing
2 months ago

Did this one today. Only about 20 people on the trail. Still a bit of snow so snowshoes or micro spikes would be recommended. Still a few larch trees with needles on but won’t be for much longer. Nice first snowshoe of the year.

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