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5 Day Hikes With a View in the Canadian Rockies


by Brian Patton

We all know the catchphrase “No pain, no gain.” Trust this trail guide author when he says that while most of these hikes may be strenuous, spectacular views will be your reward. Enjoy this short excerpt from Vol. 2 of the Canadian Rockies Annual! Want the other 10 ideas for scenic hikes? Subscribe to the magazine or Find a Copy in a retail store.


Wilcox Pass, Jasper National Park. Photo by Paul Zizka.

1/ Wilcox Pass, Jasper National Park

4.0 km (one way)
Elevation gain 335 m

Rolling alpine meadows with mountain sheep and a panoramic view of Mt. Athabasca and the Athabasca Glacier.

2/ Helen Lake, Banff National Park

6.0 km (one way)
Elevation gain 455 m

The best alpine hike in Banff National Park, especially if you continue another 3 km over Cirque Ridge to Dolomite Pass.

Mountain Lake and Wildflowers, Banff National Park

Cirque Peak and Helen Lake. Photo by Paul Zizka.

3/ Burstall Pass, Peter Lougheed Provincial Park

7.5 km (one way)
Moderate to Strenuous
Elevation gain 475 m

Wildflowers galore and views stretching from Mt. Sir Douglas to Mt. Assiniboine and Banff’s Spray Valley.

4/ Iceline Trail, Yoho National Park

6.4 km (one way)
Elevation gain 690 m

Climb to the Emerald Glacier on the President Range for lofty views of Takakkaw Falls and the Yoho Valley.

Iceline Trail, by Paul Zizka

Iceline Trail, Yoho National Park. Photo by Paul Zizka

5/ Kindersley-Sinclair Kootenay National Park

16.2 km (ROUND TRIP)
Elevation gain 1055 m

Fantastic views stretching from Yoho National Park’s Goodsirs to the Bugaboos (take three friends along to befuddle the resident grizzly).

Looking for information on all these trails? Pick up a copy of the Canadian Rockies Trail Guide, by Brian Patton and Bart Robinson.

Brian Patton is the co-author of Canadian Rockies Trail Guide (9th edition, Summerthought) and the primary contributor to “Hiker’s Blog” and “Trail Updates” on

The views and opinions expressed in the articles on are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the editor, the editorial team or the publishers.