Mount Nelson Trail

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Very Hard
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.
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
10.6 km
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.
1,897 m
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Directions to Trailhead

The Mount Nelson Trail is a rugged and challenging 10.6 km out-and-back hiking route that travels into the backcountry of the Purcell Mountains and should only be attempted by experienced hikers. The route climbs very steeply uphill before working through a basin and up the scree towards the summit. The final approach will involve some scrambling; however, the panoramic views from the summit are definitely worth the effort.

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Route Description for Mount Nelson Trail

Hiking the Mount Nelson Trail is a full-day affair and should not be taken lightly. Due to the steep incline of the trail, rugged terrain, and fairly technical approach to the summit, this route is best left for experienced hikers familiar with longer treks into alpine terrain. The trail sets out from the trailhead and climbs steeply uphill for several kilometres before coming to the picturesque basin. From here, continue hiking through the basin and up the scree, where you will pass by a waterfall on your right.

After some light scrambling through the upper portion of the basin, you will reach the summit of Mount Nelson and have a spectacular sightline over the Purcell Mountains in all directions, including Sultana Peak, Mount Catherine, and Mount Trafalgar in your immediate vicinity. After taking in the beautiful alpine views, carefully make your descent and head through the basin to return to the trailhead.

Getting to the Mount Nelson Trail Trailhead

To get to the Mount Nelson trailhead from Invermere, head northwest on Panorama Drive for 1.3 km and continue straight onto Toby Creek Road for another 16.3 km. Turn right onto Delphin Creek FSR and follow it for 1.9 km, where you will find the trailhead on the right.

Route Information

  • When to do


  • Backcountry Campsites


  • Pets allowed


  • Family friendly


  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type

    Out and back

Mount Nelson Trail Elevation Graph

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