backpacking trails in Kananaskis Country
Backpacking in Kananaskis Country allows you to explore this stunning part of the Canadian Rockies. The Kananaskis is a wonderful and beautiful place to go backpacking. K-Country tends to be much less crowded than the nearby national parks, making is a great place to plan a backcountry escape.
Many of the well-maintained backcountry campsites are situated along stunning lakes, or near pristine waterfalls. Whatever your backpacking checklist includes, you’ll be sure to tick some boxes by going backpacking in Kananaskis.
THE TOP BACKPACKING TRIPS IN KANANASKIS
- Turbine Canyon and Three Isle Lake (27.3mi, 6978ft, 4 - 5 days): The backpack to Turbine Canyon and Three Isle Lake leads you through two alpine passes, canyons, glaciers, and alpine lakes. A backpack trip to Turbine Canyon and Three Isle lake offers a bit of everything for the avid Rockies backpacker.
- Weary Creek (31.1mi, 11483ft, 3 - 4 days): A backpacking trip to Weary Creek Gap and Carnarvon Lake offers a truly wild experience in the Canadian Rockies. There are no official campsites in the area, so you are free to random camp where you see fit! This trip offers plenty of opportunity for scrambling, wildflower viewing, and overall sightseeing.
- Elk Lakes and Petain Basin (22.2mi, 4186ft, 2 -3 days): Petain Basin is a wonderfully remote and isolated meadow lying at the base of some of the tallest peaks in the Rockies. Backpacking to Petain Basin gives you access to one of the largest waterfalls in the Rockies, just a short hike from the campground!
- Rae Lake (9.9mi, 1230ft, 2 -3 days): Rae Lake is often completed as a day hike, however it is a great place for a quick backpacking trip. Lying at the base of gigantic Mount Rae, Rae Lake is a wonderful place to spend a night, take a swim, and admire the wildflowers and larch forest on nearby ridges.
- Big Elbow Loop (28.3mi, 3445ft, 3-4 days): The Big Elbow Loop is a classic backpacking trip. This easy trip is in country located between Highway 66 and Highway 40. The trek offers scenic campsites next to the Elbow River with wonderful scrambling opportunities near each site.
- Tombstone Lake (9.2mi, 1283ft, 2-3 days): Resting at the base of jagged Tombstone Mountain, the Tombstone Lakes are a spectacular sight, and the journey to them along the open upper reaches of the Elbow River is equally scenic.
- Elbow Lake (2.7mi, 427ft, 2 days): The best family backpack in the Canadian Rockies, this easy backpack is great for families. With an approach to Elbow Lake that’s just over 7ft from the car, this makes it easy to get supplies in and also get out if bad weather or little ones need it.
- Lillian and Galatea Lakes (13.1mi, 3658ft, 2-3 days): The backpack into Lillian Lake is a Friday-night classic. Finish work, get to the trailhead and get to pretty Lillian Lake. The highlight is the easy Saturday wander up to Upper Galatea Lakes and nearby Guinn’s Pass, both incredible places. A great introductory backpack.
- Upper Kananaskis Lake (10.3mi, 968ft, 2 days): Another classic introductory backpack in Kananaskis, this trail is often done as a day hike, but it is so pretty that doing it as an overnight makes it a great way to test your gear and enjoy the stunning outdoors.
The best backpacking trails in Kananaskis Country
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