Glacier Lake is a 10.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from May until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 10.5 miles Elevation Gain: 2,854 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

About 1 km along the trail there is a bridge across the North Saskatchewan River. In another km there is a nice view point that looks up the Howse River valley. The trail then follows the river flat and then climbs up along a creek. Make sure to get water at the 3rd or 4th bridge as there is no water until the lake, although sometimes there is a little spring near the summit. As you begin to descend from the summit watch for signs on trees and look to your right to see a tree blazed to commemorate the 1928 Topographical survey by Morrison Bridgland D.L.S. There is a new brown Banff Parks sign that indicates directions to Glacier Lake and Saskatechewan Crossing. Opposite of this sign is a trail (2.3km) that takes you to a viewpoint of the Howse River Valley. (Highly recommended as a half day hike from Glacier Lake) The trail continues downhill to the lake. As you near the lake, keep left to go to the campsite.

27 days ago

Glacier Lake parking           51.97384126074197   N        -116.75906997174025  W

3 months ago

entrance location 51°58'26"N 116°45'32"W

hiking
rocky
7 months ago

The outhouse was very stanky. try not to breathe. overall very nice, would recommend.

backpacking
9 months ago

Great trail. I did a backpacking overnighter here. Camp is well laid out. Beautiful views of the lake and glacier in the distance. It can get quite windy if you set up by the lake. But it's beautiful to wake up to the lake views. Lots of tent pad or hammock options. There is one bigger downed tree blocking the log otherwise good hike in and out. Elevation gain and loss to the lake. Very beautiful area.

hiking
bugs
9 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

The view at the lake is amazing! Bring bug spray. Nice to have an out house and there are several picnic style tables to use. There are also several designated fire areas with log “benches”. All trails elevation is off, mine recorded 267m gain. About 2 Km’s in there is a clearing with two red adirondack chairs which is a great place to stop if you need to make pack adjustments. This was my first overnight and it was a great starter, more than enough incline/decline, creak crossings and beautiful view at the end.

hiking
9 months ago

Alltrails elevation is way off. Elevation gain is much less than 870m, is closer to 225m. Lake is beautiful. Campground does not have designated sites, can be a bit of a challenge to find a level spot to set up your tent.

hiking
bugs
10 months ago

Very nice trail and glacier lake is beautiful. Bring your bug spray!

hiking
11 months ago

Nice easy overnight. Lake is gorgeous and the campsite has nice sheltered options or sites right on the shoreline.

hiking
11 months ago

Great first overnight! We're not-quite-beginners and this was strenuous enough for us to sort out any issues with packs and newbie packing, but easy enough that we reached the campsite with enough time to turn back if we didn't want to spend the night. The campsite view is stunning.

hiking
11 months ago

The campsite at the end of lake is gorgeous, however if you’re looking for scenic views and a workout, the hike is quite underwhelming—fairly level and in the forest most of the way. A couple lookouts along the way.

backpacking
11 months ago

Great overnight hike to start the season! Trail well maintained to the lake, where the views are amazing, especially compared to the effort required to get there. We continued approx. 1.5 km down the lake before downed trees made us turn around. Campsite is nice with lots of picnic tables and two large fire pits. Can get very windy at camp;however, there is an old wooden structure that acts as a good wind shelter for cooking. Overall, I will definitely be adding this hike to my early season rotation!

backpacking
Sun Jun 02 2019

Great easy backpacking trip. Quite windy at campsite in afternoon. We set up a tarp for wind block. Trail past campsite to the end of the lake is not maintained (over/under fallen trees).

hiking
snow
Tue May 07 2019

Great day hike. Took my chances and left the snowshoes in the vehicle. Put my gators on however which was overkill I though during the first half. Going up in elevation however, I’m glad I had them on. Still a lot of snow in higher elevations of the pass right now. The odd time my foot would sink in the soft snow. Did not wear spikes but worth taking along as the snow ices up..Big pile of bear crap (Grizz) found on the trail close by the lake so be careful.

backpacking
Thu May 02 2019

Did this trail mid-August 2018. Sipping a tea, sitting at the watershed of Glacier Lake lazily draining into the Howse River is well worth the walk. A mostly forested walk but that isn't a bad thing. You cross a cool bridge, and get to an awesome red chair viewpoint. I had a Spruce Grouse walk right up to me which was cool. It was the smokiest day of my trip, but the lake was still beautiful. Not difficult at all, just a bit on the longer side. Would love to do this again without the smoke

backpacking
Wed Apr 24 2019

I did this hike as a backpacking trip with a friend in June of 2018. The trail was clear and easy to follow, although it was mostly through the woods, so the views were limited. On the upside, the forests offer shade and smell pretty good too. The lake itself is remarkable, and the campground is quiet and rustic. A good beginner backpacking trip for sure.

running
Sun Aug 12 2018

This was a nice hike. My husband and I did this with our 13 and 12 year old children and our dog. The trail was mostly forested (which was appreciated in 30 deg C weather) and we were rewarded by the beautiful lake at the end. There were a few creek crossings along the uphill section on the way in that were great for the dog and a place to soak your hat. This hike would make for a good trail run without the kids. Bring your bug spray.

backpacking
Mon Jul 16 2018

This summer I did this hike with my 11 year old and 8 year old daughters. We paced ourselves, took breaks and did the trail in 5 hours. If going with kids, makes sure they have water, and packs that are not too heavy. (10-12% of body weight). Leave no later then late morning so you have the evening to setup camp. The viewpoint of the Howse River valley is very nice. The majority of the trail is through forest, but you are rewarded for your efforts with an off the charts view at Glacier Lake.

hiking
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hiking
9 months ago

recorded Glacier Lake

hiking
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