Outdoor Experiences Archive

Category: Summer


Bourgeau Lake

Of the numerous high lakes along the Bow Valley, Bourgeau is the nearest to the town of Banff and has been a favoured hiking destination for many decades. Surrounded by lush subalpine meadows and cradled between the highest and most spectacular mountains of the Massive Range, its popularity is well deserved. At the lake's rocky shore, hikers are welcomed by pikas, golden-mantled ground squirrels, chipmunks, and white-tailed ptarmigan. Through late July and August, colourful wildflowers bloom in the meadow.

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn
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Lake Agnes

Lake Agnes is hidden in a hanging valley high above Lake Louise, in Banff National Park, AB, Canada. In the early 1900s, a tea house was built by the lake and the present version was built in 1981. It serves refreshments and light snacks from mid-June to early October and is one of the big attractions of this hike. 

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn
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Tunnel Mountain

The trail to the summit of Tunnel Mountain is one of the park's oldest - a popular outing for Banff residents and visitors for over a century. The summit is around 300 meters (980 feet) above the town and offers beautiful views of Banff and its surrounded peaks. You will also see Banff Springs Golf Course, the Bow River, the massive cliffs of Mount Rundle, the Town of Banff, Vermilion Lakes, and the Massive Range.

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
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Cory Pass

Cory Pass is considered by many the most spectacular hike along the Bow Valley Parkway and one of the most strenuous in the park. The views are spectacular, highlighted by the towering slabs of grey limestone that form the east face of Mount Louis. If you are extra-adventurous, close the loop passing through Gargoyle Valley and Edith Pass - 13 km round trip. 

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn
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Larch Valley

In late September, the alpine larch needles turn to gold which makes this hike very popular this time of year. In mid-summer, the larch needles are pale green and the meadows are carpeted with wildflowers.

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Filed Under: Summer, Autumn
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Johnston Canyon

The most popular short hike in Banff National Park, Johnston Canyon leads to two impressive waterfalls following a trail ‘attached’ to the face of sheer canyon walls where the rushing water of Johnston Creek is literally beneath your feet. Distance: 1.1 km to the Lower Falls and 2.7 km one way to the 30 m Upper Falls. Though the catwalks and viewpoints at the two falls have sturdy railings, there have been a number of serious accidents when hikers have left the trail and fallen into this deceptively powerful mountain stream. Stay on the trail and keep young children under control.

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
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Sundance Canyon

Throughout most of its long history, the 2.4-km (1.5-mile) loop trail leading through Sundance Canyon was accessible by road from the town of Banff. In the mid-1980s, the road beyond the Cave and Basin was converted to a paved walking and cycling path, which made the trip longer but more scenically varied. Today, many people bike to the canyon on the paved trail (or cross country ski during the winter), but much of the approach follows beside the Bow River and is a pleasant route for walkers as well. The first 1.6 km (1 mi), the trail follows the Bow River and its side channels with views of the rugged peaks to the north, including the distinctive spire of Mount Edith.

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
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Fenland Trail

This short but interesting walk on the edge of the town of Banff loops through forest at the eastern edge of the Vermillion Lakes marshland. The trail runs beside the meandering waters of Echo and Forty Mile Creeks and loops through a spruce forest carpeted with bunchberry and a green cloud of horsetails.

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Filed Under: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
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