November 3, 2020 • Mountain Living
Take a Hike Banff!
By Kate Barker
One of the most beautiful parts of living in the mountains is the access to countless trails, right at our fingertips. There are so many hikes in Banff that take you to amazing views and serene forests, and they all start at your doorstep.
Here are some of our favourites.
This easy loop travels through forests along the banks of Forty Mile Creek. The loop offers a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of downtown, and it’s an easy, accessible walk. There are interpretive signs to learn about the area, and there is often wildlife around the trail. Take the path to Vermillion Lakes and enjoy some of the best views of Mount Rundle or exit on the paved multi-use trails along the Bow River that connect the area to downtown, the Fairmont Banff Springs, and beyond.
Beginning on the popular and paved Cave & Basin trails, this trek takes you along the Bow River for spectacular views of jagged peaks. Watch for horseback tours and bikers along the trail and paddlers on the water. Past the rest stop, the bikers must leave their rides behind and proceed on foot through the trees to the stunning Sundance Canyon. This walk is best during the early morning, when the sunrise causes the mountain peaks to glow.
Popular with tourists during the summer months, the Tunnel Mountain trail is quietest in the early morning or late evening. At these times, you can often find locals making the trek or logging some trail-running miles by tackling this relatively easy mini-mountain. The path is maintained and takes you through forests and up to some spectacular views of the townsite. It’s an excellent birds-eye-view to watch the town wake up or fall asleep.
Bow River Trail
Okay, okay. This may be one of the most popular trails with tourists, and the most used commuter trail by locals, but it’s also one of the most beautiful trails in the world. It has access to fishing, paddling, stunning mountain views and it’s conveniently located right downtown. It’s bike friendly, pedestrian friendly and accessible. Take it from the Canoe Club to Main Street or go further and cross the pedestrian bridge towards Bow Falls.
Taking time to discover a good hike in Banff is a great way to connect to the community and natural spaces. So step outside, take a deep breath of mountain air and get exploring! Happy trails!