Johnston Canyon is one of Alberta’s many gems. Located just outside of Banff National Park, the flowing rivers and gorgeous waterfall hike is a quick 3.4 miles roundtrip.
It’s amazing how much varied scenery you see over the course of the very short 1.7 mile hike. Follow the catwalks through the canyon as the stunning turquoise water flows below. If you’re feeling up for a longer hike, you can continue along the trail to the Ink Pots (makes for a great winter hike!), which is an additional 3.6 miles. To avoid the crowds, it is highly recommended to start this hike early in the morning or later in the afternoon.
To get to Johnston Canyon, simply follow the Bow Valley Parkway west to Johnston Canyon for about 11 miles.
You’ll find the parking lot on the east side where you’ll then follow the footbridge to the trailhead. The trail begins immediately past the lodge with a gradual ascent.
Shortly, you’ll come to Lower Falls that has several very unique vantage points. If you’re feeling adventurous, there are a few areas along the trail where some off-trail exploring will take you to some amazing spots. The Johnston Canyon cave is one of the most photographed locations in Alberta. Pay attention between Lower and Upper Falls and you’ll see an easy to follow trail that leads you to this incredible spot. Shortly after the cave, you’ll reach Upper Falls which features an impressive 30 meter drop.
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