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Aster Lake Trail is a 13.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Kananaskis Improvement, Alberta, Canada that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 13.3 miles Elevation Gain: 4,094 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

forest

lake

views

Aster Lake is a high alpine lake located in a remote section of Kananaskis Country located in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park. Hidden Lake is unusual in that it doesn't have a surface outflow and instead drains through an underground fissure that empties at the springs on the shores of Upper Kananaskis Lake. The forest around Hidden Lake is extremely dense with thick underbrush.

hiking
snow
3 days ago

Great trail until reaching Aster Creek after climbing through the scree slope. After this, there was still alot of snow and I turned back and returned to my camp at the Point on Upper Kananaskis Lake. Trail around Hidden Lake is lush forest and taking the marked route there are only a few fallen trees over the trail and were easily navigable.

5 days ago

Did the trail to Aster Lake yesterday, June 26. There is still so much snow on the way up to Aster Lake and much of the trail is hidden under snow. The snow is mostly packed and I was able to walk on top. I brought crampons which helped but could not avoid my boots getting soaked. The hike took much longer due to re-routing and finding the trail hidden under all the snow plus rain throughout half of the trek. I was the only one who camped at Aster Lake that night. I originally planned to do the loop and do the Northover ridge the 2nd day, however, it was just rainy and heavy clouds this morning at Aster lake for me to continue up the ridge. Opted to go back down the same way I came up. Will definitely have to go back at another time when the trail and weather conditions are much more favorable. I'm sure the views up there are even more amazing.

hiking
7 days ago

Amazing views and varied terrain on this hike! We stopped about a km short of the lake, due to sketchy snow over a torrent of meltwater coming down the mountain. We would have had to cross the snow over fast-moving water and could not be sure it could be done safely with the conditions. I wouldn’t hesitate to come back in a couple weeks to complete the trail to the lake.

hiking
blowdown
scramble
snow
13 days ago

I stop at one km short to the lake, due to not having snowshoes I used micro spike near the end

hiking
blowdown
over grown
21 days ago

Tried to get up to Fossil Falls. The trail around Hidden Lake has a lot of blown down trees. Very hard to navigate the trail. Was unable to make it due to blown down trees.

snowshoeing
rocky
scramble
snow
7 months ago

As a 16 year old it was an awesome trip for the skilled backpacker I brought two of my friends who are also skilled in backcountry travel. At this time of year expect wind loaded shoots and slow travel. We never made it to the campground but we passed fossil falls. Over all a really great trip and insanely challenging.

hiking
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

Backpacked this as an overnight with my husband. We didn’t find route finding to be an issue. The Hidden lake turnoff is marked by flagging and an easy to follow narrow trail - it’s a few hundred metres earlier than All Trails has it. The hardest part is a steep ascent up a scree slope. The trail is easy to follow but challenging with a heavy pack due to the grade. There is a short scramble at the top of the scree just after the river crossing that is difficult with a pack and if you have short arms. There is an alternate route to the left if you want to avoid that. All trails also has you step off the main trail towards the ranger station. Know that this diversion is unnecessary and the well worn path is actually the better approach but either trail will get you to Aster lake. Bear lockers are at the campground but they don’t lock well. Also there are no tables. The toilet was really great though!

hiking
muddy
off trail
over grown
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

Way to easy to get lost, trail is not marked well at all. So many trails going different ways. Starts off extremely easy around the lake. Then it is almost rock climbing to get to the top of the mountain. The rockface was slippery and dangerous as one side is a cliff. Surprised we were not warned to bring spiked shoes and rock climbing equipment. Beautiful views but definitely not for the faint of heart. The trail on all trails was off. Where it told us to go was not actually the trail so we got mixed up. Good challenge but not a recommended hike.

hiking
10 months ago

Hiked Aster yesterday. QUESTION: When you get to the first sign for the Ranger Station there is a very well worn trail on the right going down. Does anyone know where that trail leads to? BTW - the first signed trail leading down on the left to the Ranger Station is the one to take for Aster. Shortly after you will see a 2nd Ranger station sign across the creek on the left - do not take that one - stay to the right for Aster.

hiking
10 months ago

We did everything except Northover Ridge, which I wished we had started earlier so we could do the whole loop, none the less it was a beautiful day and the views were amazing. Tons of people running the trail, and no wildlife that we could see. Super easy to follow trail, a bit of leg work to get across the boulder field but worth every ankle roll ;). We did 30km up 982m and took 8 hours total moving time as some parts were slower than others. Still a great day!

hiking
rocky
10 months ago

Hiked upto Aster lake to stay the night at the backcountry campsite. This hike is definitely challenging going up. there is a steep incline on scree for a large portion of the hike. The backpack didn't make things any easier but even without a backpack its a good workout. You get some great views of fossil falls, hidden and upper Kananaskis Lake. the pics dont due fossil falls justice it is a beautiful waterfall. The campsite is great right by the stream, I just wish you were aloud fires. Hiking beyond the campsite and toward Northover Ridge is great scenery. Great hike would highly recommend

hiking
rocky
scramble
10 months ago

Great hike with an amazing views. Lake is beautiful and sooo calm. The trail is moderate. The way to the hidden lake is super smooth after that when you are getting to aster lake it’s harder and you are getting bigger elevation. There is scramble and some parts are steep. Creeks and beautiful waterfalls all the way.

hiking
10 months ago

LOST PHONE / Grizzly & cub frequenting area Completed the Aster Lake trail on long weekend Aug 5 as last leg of Northover ridge loop and also completed the trail to aster lake as an in-and-out on Aug 10. Beautiful hike with lots of scenery along the way but not an easy trail, especially with a heavy pack, some tough loose rocky terrain up from hidden lake to aster lake. Dropped my phone Aug 5 near the tarns in the BC side of Northover ridge trail (near mount Northover). Due to grizzly and cub swimming in the tarns I was unable to search for it and retrieve it. If you find my iPhone in a light purple case, please contact me or take off airplane mode for the “lost phone” message and contact ph# I have sent to the phone. - returned to the trail August 10 to search for phone. Did not locate. Same grizzly and her cub spotted at the north end of Hidden Lake along the aster lake/hidden lake trail just off of the Kananaskis Lake circuit. The bear sitings have been reported.

hiking
10 months ago

This is an epic hike, but not for the inexperienced. The trail through the woods around Hidden Lake has been improved a lot. The scree path up from Hidden Lake, has deteriorated a lot since last summer. We’ve had a wet summer that has disrupted the trail a lot. Take care, pay attention and bring poles. The scramble up the head wall is fun, but pay attention...

hiking
muddy
off trail
11 months ago

Call the crib, same number same hood, it's all good! Did this hike in the rain over July 2019 weekend. Nothing overly technical, and a lot of good views! The walk along the Lake is okay. The falls are gorgeous, lots of water running off the mountain sides. Don't let them hold you down reach for the stars.

hiking
11 months ago

Went on july 14th. Parked at the upper lake lot. Beautiful and easy walk around the lake until you meet the aster lake trail. The map you can download from the app had me walk past the turn off and there was no sign at all marking the trailhead. Short narrow hike to hidden lake which was quite a bit bigger than i thought it would be. You can walk along the lakeshore to the left or follow the path in the forest (as we did) near to the rocky shoreline. This map has you take the lake path and up another path to aster lake than what we took although they do end up at the same place. The forest trail to aster lake up to the tree line wasnt too bad. A little steep but im a moderate hiker and made it! Once out of the tree line we went off to fossil falls and didnt go up the scree path to aster lake, but we got pretty close! Cant wait to go back! We tried to get over to fossil falls and made it pretty close but couldnt find a good path over the rock scree so we turned back after having lunch with an amazing view. Will return one day to make it to the lake and right up to the falls. Long long day but you can do it!!!

hiking
Fri Jul 13 2018

Great hike / scramble. One lake followed by another. Best to camp at Aster Lake & do over 2 days, or use the camp site as a jumping off point for one of the surrounding peaks. Lots of ice, snow & scree, so can be challenging.

hiking
1 month ago

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