Chester Lake Trail [CLOSED]

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Peter Lougheed Provincial Park

Chester Lake Trail [CLOSED] is a 9.7 kilometer heavily trafficked loop trail located near Kananaskis Improvement, Alberta, Canada that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, fishing, fly fishing, and snowshoeing and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 9.7 km Elevation Gain: 424 m Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

fishing

hiking

snowshoeing

forest

lake

views

wildlife

snow

closed

Note: The parking lot is closed. Chester Lake is closed until June 29 for a seasonal closure. https://www.albertaparks.ca/parks/kananaskis/kananaskis-country/advisories-public-safety/trail-reports/peter-lougheed/chester-lake-winter/ Please note that there has been bear activity reported in the area.

hiking
closed
snow
15 days ago

The parking lot is closed. Chester closed until June 29 https://www.albertaparks.ca/parks/kananaskis/kananaskis-country/advisories-public-safety/trail-reports/peter-lougheed/chester-lake-winter/ Just across the Highway from Chester Lake Trail, skied the French Haig Robertson Traverse on May 16 which includes skiing from Burstall Lakes to the Burstall Trailhead (parking lot is open). There was tons of snow! Skis or snowshoes were critical, the trail is analogous to Chester Lake Trail. Also, keep in mind, the snow might not support you in hiking boots on the way back after the days warmth even if it supported you on the way out in the morning. Feel free to follow me on IG for local outdoor shenanigans and conditions www.instagram.com/kylescoronalife

hiking
25 days ago

Trail is closed until June 29th :)

hiking
snow
2 months ago

snowshoeing
snow
2 months ago

Very nice trail. Doable climb at the beginning. Had winter/ hiking boots and 3 kids and we all managed the steep parts without spikes or snowshoes. Kids brought a sled for the way down, which made the decent extremely fun for them. Tremendous setting at the top. The snowshoe route was 8km total distance.

hiking
snow
2 months ago

We hiked this trail on March 22. It seemed like there were lots of other people who had the idea to hike this weekend, the large parking lot was 3/4 full but the trail didn’t feel busy at all. Maybe they were on the skiing trail? There’s lots of snow on the trail. Many people had snowshoes but we decided to hike in boots and didn’t have trouble at all. We were to happy to find it was just snowy and not icy, but some steeper sections felt slippery. The trail itself is well packed but all around you is deeper fluffy snow. The trail itself is a steady but not too steep climb that eventually opens to a lake an beautiful mountains. We continued just past the lake and found the elephant rocks. They were huge boulders with majestic puffs of snow sculpted on top, very fun to visit. We took our time exploring and made the round trip in just over 3 hours; lots of photo breaks. We were also impressed with the snowshoe trail signage. Super easy to follow. We can’t wait to come back and see this spot in the summer!

hiking
snow
2 months ago

hiking
snow
2 months ago

Beautiful mountain views in between heavily wooded stretches. Most of the elevation gain is in one area in the beginning and then it mostly levels out. Snowshoes not required as long as you go a bit later in the morning/day when it has already been hiked a few times by other groups.

hiking
snow
2 months ago

Great hike. You definitely need snowshoes If you want to make it to the lake but the rest of the trail is very packed and could be done with crampons. It was very snowy when we went so snowshoes definitely helped. Can’t wait to go back in the summer. First few km are a pretty steep don’t forget to bring water!

hiking
2 months ago

Everything is lovely as always but you 100% need snowshoes if you want to make it to the lake.

hiking
2 months ago

Well-packed trail until close to the top. We only had crampons so had to turn back. Would recommended snowshoes for the top bit. Very fun!

snowshoeing
snow
3 months ago

hiking
blowdown
3 months ago

Snow shoes needed at this seasons. Lovely, and planned come back during summer.

snowshoeing
snow
3 months ago

Perfect conditions turned a great trail into a spectacular snowshoeing experience! The lower parts of the trail are narrow and well packed but once you get to the meadows things open up and provide plenty of "off-roading" opportunities.

hiking
icy
snow
3 months ago

Did the snowshoe trail today and it was great! Didn't need snowshoes but crampons would definitely be recommend. Trail is really nice and packed down. It was somewhat windy once we got to the lake, and you can't go fully around the lake right now. This was a great hike though!

snowshoeing
snow
3 months ago

Beautiful sunny day with no wind! Lots of snow but the trail was well packed down all the way, half our group used cramp ons and half used snow shoes- both worked well! Took a couple hours getting up to the meadow, stopping here and there for photos, first couple km are uphill but not crazy strenuous. After getting to the clearing we opted to stop for lunch in the nice open sunny area rather than heading right to the lake as it was quite shaded and much colder. Lots of cars in the parking lot (~25) but surprisingly we didn’t run into very many people- most were cross country skiers. I did this hike in the summer and this time mid winter, both were incredible and quite a different perspective/ experience! Highly recommend!

hiking
3 months ago

I would highly recommend this trail for winter. While you didn’t need snowshoes today, it was nice to have them. There is lots of deep snow you can play around in. There is one small steep part and then pretty level the rest of the way to the lake. I had a beginner with me and they enjoyed it a lot.

hiking
snow
3 months ago

Trail is packed down for the most part, did it just with spikes and was fine. First couple of km’s are a bit of a grind, pretty mellow after that. Popular trail, lots of people heading up as we were coming down.

3 months ago

great hike! business first pleasure later! the grunt of the journey is right away. snowshoes are good for going up. took them off on the way down the snow was packed down well. next time I am brining a crazy carpet to slide down. a friend and i tried sliding on our bums and that was fun. the views are incredible. work up a great sweat but when you reach the top its chilly so prep for that! there were a few that brought kids but its a tough and long climb for little ones. this has to be added to ones list of hiking spots!

hiking
snow
3 months ago

Fantastic hike! Most people had snow shoes but you DO NOT NEED THEM. Spikes are fine. Very cold and windy at the top so bring a windbreaker and warm layers. At the trail head, go up the LEFT trail then when it forks (almost immediately), go RIGHT. There is a pretty steep part in the middle but push through it and you will be rewarded with a nice flat trail for the last third.

snowshoeing
3 months ago

Did this trail in 2016 and its still good for a leg burner and gets your heart pumping in some sections. I'm glad I took my snowshoes, the valley had a dump of snow on Friday and it was snowing while we were there. Temperatures were fairly good, but dress in layers, as you near the top the wind has a tendency to pick up and you'll have worked up a sweat by that time. All in all a wonderful snowshoe, great scenery and so close to Calgary.

hiking
4 months ago

Did the hike january 26. The trail is really packed down. Only about 1cm of loose snow on top. Spikes would be good, but not completely necessary. Snowshoes is not necessary at all, and as long as you stick to the trail they hamper more than they help.

snow
4 months ago

Hiked the snowshoe trail on January 18. Just to note: there are 2 separate trails in winter. X ski to the right and snowshoe to the left. We did the little hike up to Elephant rocks too. That only took about 30 minutes to go up and then back down. 11.3 K in total. Great snowshoe trail, marked clearly.

hiking
snow
4 months ago

Well-marked and well-trafficked trail up to the lake. Snowshoes would've been nice, but made do with crampons as long as we stuck to the trail (lots of snow otherwise). Became a web of trails near the lake where people wandered off (including people going straight up the mountain into an avalanche zone)

hiking
4 months ago

Idyllic snowshoeing trail. Lots of people on the paths, both snowshoers and XC skiers. Some people managed in just shoes and cleats but there’s a few deep spots you can fall. Dog friendly too. The road going out is usually not great so take it slow.

hiking
4 months ago

Fun hike in winter and summer. Beautiful views along the way!

snowshoeing
snow
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

Compacted snow on snowshoe trail—enough to hike comfortably.

snowshoeing
snow
5 months ago

Dec 23/2019 - Snowshoeing, trail was in great condition. There was a fresh dump of snow from the day before, if anything it was the unplowed roads that were the trickier part of this day! For snowshoeing, this trail is only 3.5km one way, and is an out and back. Follow Leighton Atema’s recording for an example: https://www.alltrails.com/explore/recording/chester-lake-trail--1309 I suppose it could be done following the hiking trail, but we followed the snowshoe trail signs and map provided by Alberta Parks. Roughly a 3 hour round trip, but that’s including a few stops and lunch, so it could definitely be done quicker. The views were decent, the first 80% or so is uphill and in the trees, expect some better views once it flattens out and you reach the lake, as you’ll feel like you’re surrounded by mountain peaks. Fun one for sure!

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