Two Jack Lake Hike
Two Jack Lake Hike

Two Jack Lake Trail

Around Banff
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View of Mount Rundle from Two Jack Lake Banff National ParkExploring shore around Two Jack Lake

Two Jack Lake Trail

Distance: 2.0mi
Elevation: 604ft
Time: 1-1.5h

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Hiking along the shore of Two Jack Lake in Banff National Park is the perfect add-on to a day spent exploring the Minnewanka Scenic Drive. This trail is accessible to everyone and features an excellent picnic area equipped with Banff’s famous red chairs.

Two Jack Lake Hike Map

Getting there

To get to Two Jack Lake, take Banff Avenue northbound from the Town of Banff, passing underneath the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue on the road as it becomes Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive. Pass the Cascade Ponds turnoff and take the next right on the Minnewanka Scenic Drive. After turning right here, you will continue on this road until you see signs for Two Jack Day Use Area. There will be signs for Two Jack Lakeside campground and Two Jack Main campground before reaching the day-use area. Park at the day-use area to begin the hike.

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About

When to do

May-October

Backcountry Campsites

No

Pets allowed

Yes - On Leash

Family friendly

Yes

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

High

Route Type

Out and back


Two Jack Lake Trail
Elevation Graph


Two Jack Lake Trail Description

The simple family-friendly Two Jack Lake trail takes hikers from Two Jack day-use area to Two Jack Lakeside campground along the stunning shores of one of Banff’s popular lakes. This trail is a great option for those exploring the Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive.

Park at the day-use area and walk down to the shore. You will find great picnic areas here. Facing the lake, find the trail on your right and follow it. This is the Two Jack Lake hike. The 2.0mi out-and-back trail will take you directly along the shore of this incredible lake to one of the Parks Canada frontcountry campgrounds.

The stunning blue waters of Two Jack Lake will captivate you as you continue along this well-maintained path. Stop along the way to play in the pristine water or take some photos of the majestic Mount Rundle while you are away from the crowds at the day-use area. You will reach Two Jack Lakeside campground on this trail before turning around and heading back the way you came.

Hiking Route Highlights

Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive

Two Jack Lake trail exists along the must-see Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive. This scenic loop is packed with trails, viewpoints, and day-use areas. You can easily spend an entire day exploring the area. At the beginning of the drive, be sure to pull over and observe the impressive Cascade Falls rushing down the east face of Cascade Mountain. Have a picnic or take a stroll around Cascade Ponds across the road. Continue on and stop at Lower and Upper Bankhead for interpretive information on the historic Town of Bankhead. Stop at magnificent Lake Minnewanka. This is the largest and deepest lake in the park. You can enjoy snacks from the concession, boat tours and rentals, sightseeing, and hiking trails while here. Continue on past endless viewpoints and photo opportunities before reaching Two Jack and Johnson Lakes. Watch for wildlife in this area as many visitors get lucky!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you swim in Two Jack Lake?

Two Jack Lake is a pristine mountain lake, and although it is fed with icy cold water, it is a common swimming area in the summer months!

Why is the lake called Two Jack?

Two Jack Lake is named after the historic characters from the area. Jack Stanley, who operated a boat concession, and Jack Watters, who worked in the mines in Bankhead.

Insider Hints

  • Roam Transit operates a bus route to this area

  • Pack a full day’s essentials to picnic and explore

  • Book a site at Two Jack Lakeside Campground through Parks Canada

  • Be sure to explore the Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive

  • Spend a half day on the C-Level Cirque trail if you are looking for something tougher than Two Jack Lake.

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