The city of Canmore is both the gateway to Banff National Park and an entry point to Kananaskis Land. As a result, there are an incredible number of truly exceptional hikes within an hour’s drive. I tried to present Canmore walks that offer views near the city. Most are around 15 to 20 minutes away by car. The hike to the Sparrowhawk Tarns is the exception.
Many of these Canmore hikes can be done from spring – except for the Year of the virus. In Ha Ling in particular, it can get very crowded in March, depending on the year and snow cover. Always prepare for a change of weather and don’t forget the bear spray.
This post contains some affiliate links. If you make a qualified purchase through any of these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.
If you are planning hikes at the beginning of the season, do not forget that Ice maker. You can make a big difference in staying upright and safe on the mountain.
Heart Mountain – one of the early Canmore hikes
The Heart Mountain hike is a partial hike, but mostly it’s a climbing hike, but it’s not too difficult except for a move described in the blog below.
Its 2.8 kilometers in one direction with a height difference of 745 meters. Just rely on the home route to the summit. It took us a little over four hours back, including lunch time.
The starting point is at the exit of the Lac des Arc, 18 kilometers east of Canmore. Park at Heart Creek Trailhead and follow the detailed instructions in the blog below.
Read: The Heart Mountain hike near Canmore
Ha Ling Peak
You can see Ha Ling Peak from anywhere in Canmore. It looks impressive and yet there is a great hiking trail to the summit. Its 3.0 kilometers in one direction with a height difference of 737 meters. It’s very steep from the start, but is easily tempered when you’re not in the trees.
The road to Ha Ling Peak was closed for some time, but was reopened in 2019. It is safer than the large number of people who hike it.
The trailhead is easy to find as it is across from Goat Creek car park.
Read: The fantastic hike to the top of Ha Ling Peak
Mount Lady MacDonald
If you’re looking for an early season hike in the Canmore region, choose Mount Lady MacDonald. What you get is great training and some exceptional views of the Canmore region.
There is the possibility to drive past the helicopter pad up a steep scree slope to an airy ridge path. I haven’t done that yet, but if you have a fleet of feet and aren’t afraid, you’ll get even more incredible prospects.
In total, it is about 6 kilometers there and back with 610 meters of altitude to the helicopter pad. To get to the summit, its 8.6 kilometers return on an incline of 905 meters.
Read: The Mount Lady MacDonald hike near Canmore
Grassi Lakes – one of the most popular Canmore hikes
One of the most popular trails in the Canmore region is the Grassi Lakes. It is quick to end, as its 4 kilometers return with a height difference of 300 meters. Just pick your times – either early or late in the day if you want to avoid crowds.
There are two paths that lead you to the Grassi Lakes. One is marked as easy and the other as difficult. Choose the difficult option if you’re looking for variety, or better do it as a loop. I would recommend taking the difficult up and the easy down.
The lakes are also a pleasant place to watch the climbers or enjoy a picnic.
EEOR (East End by Rundle)
The hike to the EEOR – also called the East End of Rundle – is not for everyone. It’s relentlessly steep climbing – some 875 meters over just 2.9 kilometers. Part of the hike near the cliff band is more climbing than hiking, and not everyone will feel comfortable with it.
But the payoff is an incredible view over Canmore, the Bow Valley and south to the mountains along Smith Dorrien Road.
Wait a few years until the beginning of May for the snow to disappear before doing this hike. You can usually walk through it until October when the snow starts to fly. Take plenty of water and sunscreen in summer.
Note that a small dog was attacked and killed by a cougar on EEOR in October 2019. Therefore, pay attention to your surroundings, especially if you are hiking outside of peak hours.
Read: Test your courage on the EEOR hike near Canmore
One of the Canmore walks is right in town
If you’re looking for an easy, scenic, family-friendly hike, you don’t even have to leave Canmore. Look for over 20 kilometers of well-marked trails that meander through the forest, meander along the Bow River, and take you over bridges. Many sections offer a really nice view of the mountains.
Sometimes there is a well-placed bench and even a bit of wildlife like the moose I saw while drinking from the Bow River.
High Rockies Trail
The 80-kilometer High Rockies Trail is part of the Great Trail, also known as the Trans-Canada Trail. This part of the Great Trail is the westernmost section in Alberta. It is a multi-purpose trail that is said to be shared with mountain bikers and even riders.
There are numerous access points along Smith Dorrien Road to get to the High Rockies Trail. The closest to Canmore is the Goat Creek Trailhead and car park, 3.5 miles from the Canmore Nordic Center, along Highway 742 (a dirt road).
Don’t expect services along the way and be aware of when hiking. Plan a round trip hike unless you’ve arranged an auto shuttle.
Read: Cycling on the High Rockies Trail in Kananaskis Country
Mount Yamnuska – one of the challenging Canmore hikes
Mount Yamnuska is the first remarkable mountain you see when you drive east from Calgary towards the mountains. Although you are not in Canmore, the starting point is only 25 minutes from the city.
This is a hike that can be quite a challenge for many people and that I would not recommend if you hate exposure or a mess. There are three parts that can be difficult for some – getting through the chimney, lots of rubble, and a short section of chain that isn’t as bad as it sounds.
The 11 km hike increases 900 meters and apart from a few short sections it is nothing more than uphill. Take short gaiters for the descent as there is a lot of scree to deal with. (Note the scree heaps in the photo below where you will descend.)
Read: The demanding Yamnuska hike is full of surprises
Sparrowhawk Tarns – one of the quieter Canmore hikes
Do this great 13.8km return hike from around the third week of June to mid-August if you want to catch the tarns filled with water. They usually dry out during the summer. The hike is moderate with only 720 vertical meters. The biggest problem is staying on track – everything described in the link in the blog below.
The starting point for the Sparrowhawk Tarns is only 22.5 kilometers from the Canmore Nordic Center. There is a signposted Sparrowhawk Day Use Area on the dusty Smith-Dorrien Road. When it’s full, you can park on the street.
Read: The beautiful Sparrowhawk Tarns hike near Canmore
Overnight before or after the hike in Canmore
Inexpensive: The Canmore clubhouse The hotel, located 4.5 kilometers outside the city, is operated by the Alpine Club of Canada. It’s only $ 30 a night for members and $ 40 a night for non-members.
Bed & Breakfast: The Howling Wolf B & B. is classified as exceptional.
If you’re looking for accommodation that comes with a fully equipped kitchen, as well as a washer and dryer, this is it Basecamp Resort is a good choice. Enjoy well-appointed rooms with thoughtful details like local coffee and Rocky Mountain soap. The downside in my books is the lack of a personal touch as you get a code for your room so you don’t have to speak to anyone. Each. But maybe that’s just me. The prices are reasonable.
Boutique hotel: The Malcolm Hotel Near downtown Canmore is a 4-star hotel with a heated outdoor pool. It opened in 2019.
Click the photo to bookmark your Pinterest boards.
Note: We are not the author of this content. For the Authentic and complete version,
Check its Original Source