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Canadian Rockies Trail Guide

Early season hiking in Banff and Waterton Lakes

Crypt Lake

Deadfall litters Waterton’s lower Crypt Lake trail in early May.  Photo courtesy of Parks Canada.

It’s been one of the earliest springs on record. But if you’ve ever wondered why we don’t recommend for our readers to hit the high country trails, all you have to do is check out Waterton Lakes National Park trail conditions and you’ll see that at the time of writing (early June, 2016) Waterton’s popular Crypt Lake trail is covered in deadfall.

While conditions will have improved on the lower half of the Crypt Lake trail since this detailed report was filed, upper sections are still snow-covered and messy. The same goes for a lot of trails in June throughout the Canadian Rockies—expect deadfall, mud and lingering snowfields.


Early season hiking in Banff National Park

A lot of scenic high trails in Banff National Park, are open and should be quite reasonable during the warm week ahead.

My recommendations: C-Level Cirque, Aylmer Lookout, Cory Pass, Castle Lookout, Lake Agnes, Plain of the Six Glaciers, Lake Annette in Paradise Valley, Larch Valley, Eiffel Lake, and Boulder Pass. You can expect to cross some snowpatches on some of these trails, but nothing that well-shod hikers shouldn’t be able to navigate. All these trails are detailed in the Canadian Rockies Trail Guide.

Check out the Banff National Park Trail Report for the latest heading into what looks to be an exceptional June.



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