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    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    Very Easy
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    30 m
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    3.0 km
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical DIFF
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Technical DIFF
    Directions to Trailhead

    Johnson Lake

    Johnston Lake hike in Banff National Park

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    Table of contents

    This hike around Johnson Lake is a great choice for beginners or those with limited physical abilities and it is especially family-friendly. We also think it’s a great way to start or end the day and makes a great after-dinner walk in summer.

    Route Description for Johnson Lake

    From the parking lot, head towards the beautiful and enormous Johnson Lake. There is a path that can go either left or right. There isn’t any significant difference between the routes here. If you go right, you’ll pass the electricity pylons briefly and then circle the lake in the trees, with views coming and going as you proceed.

    Coming to the end of the trail, you’ll continue downwards and pass a long, flat strip of land – otherwise known as a berm. Here, there are often people fishing in Johnson Lake. Pause for a moment to look at the water – sometimes it appears that the water is boiling due to the number of fish coming to the surface feeding.

    On the other side of Johnson Lake there are two options: a high route or a low route. We prefer the high route, and Parks Canada has left two large red chairs to take a break and enjoy the views if you select this one.

    The remainder of the trail is in trees. As you near the car park, there are several picnic tables. These can be busy, but if you’re lucky enough to find a nice spot you can easily spend a pleasant hour here enjoying a snack or a meal.

    Insider Hints for Johnson Lake

    • This is a good trail to do year round, though bring micro spikes if it is snowy or icy.
    • When you have the chance, look into small bays and shallow water – there are often many fish to see.
    • There are some nice picnic spots to stop and enjoy a delicious lunch with wonderful views. To get there, come towards the lake from the parking lot and head left.

    Getting to the Johnson Lake Trailhead

    Head towards Lake Minnewanka from Banff on the Trans-Canada Highway. Take the second signed right towards “Two-Jack Lake”. Follow this road and take the first right, indicating the route to Johnson Lake. Follow this road to the parking lot at the end.

    Route Information

    • When to do:

      All Year

    • Backcountry Campsites:


    • Toilets:


    • Family friendly:


    • Route Signage:


    • Crowd Levels:


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    Johnson Lake Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

    Check Area Weather


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