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Castle Mountain Lookout Trail

HARD 248 reviews
#27 of 202 trails in

Castle Mountain Lookout Trail is a 6.4 kilometer moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and snowshoeing and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 6.4 km Elevation Gain: 558 m Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

snowshoeing

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

hiking
1 hour ago

Great hike! Took us 1.5 to get to the top, amazing views of Banff National Park at the top! No scrambling at all which is nice for such an amazing view! Lake Louise parking lot was full and the shuttle had a line up so big it was a 90 minute wait... came here and only 2 cars in the lot! Come enjoy the mountains with nobody around, the way it’s meant to be!

18 hours ago

great hike! opted here on learning the fiasco limited acess is around Lk Louise and Moraine Lake. This trail offers nice challenge and isn't crowded at all. Easy parking available. Steady incline most of way with few switchbacks. Not as difficult as hard rating would have it. Summitted within about two hours. Some surrounding peaks are getting snow as winter approaches. Would next like do hike around backside that gets on top above of rugged Castle walls.

All incline the entire way. It is a pretty tough hike but the view at the top is pretty great.

hiking
9 days ago

Tough short hike up to the Lookout. Enjoyed it. If you’re in reasonable shape, it’s fine. I would say this is a an intermediate hike. Lake Annette to Sentinel Pass sooo much harder.

hiking
10 days ago

Steep climb, had to stop a few times to slow down my heart rate but well worth it . Amazing to climb to this lookout of Castle mountain that grabs my attention every time I drive by it .

hiking
11 days ago

Always up. Beautiful valley view.

hiking
11 days ago

blast and a half the only reason it’s “difficult” is because it’s pretty steep and never flattens out, the only kids who would do this without complaining are some frickn’ die hards man but the views are dope

hiking
12 days ago

I recommend this hike to anyone who is physically fit but not an experienced hiker. This hike doesn’t require technical skill. For an August hike, I found the shade from the trees a welcome feature. I didn’t need to experience a majestic view for the entire climb. We met many people on the trail, mainly couples, some were elderly couples. The almost constant incline makes the hike arduous for some but a great workout for others. We encountered a few older couples who decided to turn back. I think the average time to get to the lookout is about 1.5 hours. We didn’t see any bears and I don’t recall many berry bushes close to the path. The view is worth it, bring a lunch, and take a panoramic photo!

excellent trail... took just under 2.5 hours total travel time without stops ... hiked on August 25 2019. black bear right at trailhead running out of forest and crossed in front of us. seemed scared of us, probably didn't know we were there until last minute as it then ran away from us. trail is incline all the way to the top but not a hard hike I would rate it as moderate, I have done hard hikes this is not hard. view is really amazing. very quiet trail not alot of people on it at all which is enjoyable.

hiking
30 days ago

Gorgeous moderate hike with spectacular views and epic waterfalls!

hiking
1 month ago

I took a ten, eight, and four year old. The slog got them at the 1870m elevation so we didn’t quite make the lookout. The 4yo needed a lift down most the way, the older two skipped and jogged much of it (after all the dramatics). Averaged a solid 27min per km pace up, and 20min per down. Let’s just say we didn’t pass anyone. Lots to see (views and plants), and enough work for the crew to feel like they accomplished something. The few features there were besides the uphill were welcome diversions.

hiking
1 month ago

Nothing about this hike is technically difficult, but it is pretty relentlessly vertical and a good steady aerobic workout. I went on a morning where the mountain was socked in with low cloud. It doesn’t make for good pictures but the experience of being at the lookout and not being able to see further than the base was pretty magical.

Really lovely little hike. Great views, not too steep but still aerobically challenging. Not too many people on the trail and plenty of parking when you go in the morning.

hiking
1 month ago

Great, short 2.5 to 3 hour hike! I consider it an excellent workout, with an incredible view at the top to have lunch!

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Good half day hike. Great view from the top and the trail wasn't overly crowded considering it was a long weekend. It is a steady climb to the top but as to whether or not is should be classed as a moderate or hard hike, Parks Canada rates this hike as moderate.

hiking
1 month ago

Good half day hike. Great view from the top and the trail wasn't overly crowded. It is a steady climb to the top but as to whether or not it should be classed as a moderate or hard hike, Parks Canada rates this hike as moderate.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

I really liked this hike. Did this with a 6 and 9 year old so it took 2 hours up and 1 hour down. A lot of it is in the shade so perfect for a warmer day. The views are great once you get higher up and the end is rewarding. It doesn't seem to be heavily trafficked which is also nice.

hiking
1 month ago

I really liked this trail. it's a hard climb and takes determination but the view at the end is rewarding. there are some nice views along the way, and even on a very sunny day you don't get stuck out on the boiling sun for more than a few minutes at a time. took 4 hours with the kids. this trail is on its own, and very well marked, so you basically can't get lost. passed 100's of cars on the road outside the full parking lot at Johnson Canyon, compared to the dozen vehicles at this one.

hiking
1 month ago

Decent view at the end, but there are definitely more scenic hikes in the area. You're in trees for most of the hike but it opens up here and there for some views. I would consider this hike moderate, but there are a lot of switchbacks to grind through. It's a good leg workout for sure.

hiking
2 months ago

Pretty chill hike. It’s a decent view but nothing crazy. It’s a good early season training trail because it dries out pretty quick. But there are a lot more trails that have a better payoff at the top. I think there are some good climbing routes above the lookout though.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked the trail today. I would argue that it is correctly rated as moderate but would qualify the rating by saying you should be in good shape. The way up is indeed a climb. Worth the burn to get to the top and see the views.

hiking
muddy
rocky
2 months ago

Awesome trail! It’s fairly steep the entire way and a bit muddy at the bottom if there has been rain. Great spot to hike if you’re looking for a quick medium difficulty trail!

hiking
2 months ago

this is NOT moderate. I'm an experienced hiker and this was no joke. Terrain isn't hard, but you gain 1900 ft in 2 miles

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

amazing view took about 3hrs.

hiking
2 months ago

More then a moderate hike. Need decent footwear. View at the top is incredible

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Not a technical climb per se but a good workout for the average hiker for sure. Don’t forget your water and a snack for the turn at the lookout. Spectacular view! My Garmin reported more like 7.4 km round trip so take from that what you will. Enjoy!

hiking
2 months ago

I did this with my 74 year old father. definitely a solid hike with a constant incline to get to the top. not quite the hike we expected - for some reason we thought it was meant to open to meadows?? the view at the very end is worth the slog. the walk back down only takes 40-50 mins vs the 2 hours to get there

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