Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Very Easy
Duration
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.
1.5-2h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
5.1 km
Elevation
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.
125 m
User Ratings
These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
Overall Rating
This is the average user-submitted overall rating on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest.
9.8
Physical Difficulty
This is the average user-submitted rating on the physical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Technical Difficulty
This is the average user-submitted rating on the technical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Read Reviews
Directions to Trailhead
Panoramic views from the Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake hike from Smith-Dorrien Trail in Kananaskis near Canmore

The hike on the Black Prince Interpretive Trail is a great family-friendly hike on the Smith-Dorrien. The trip takes you to Warspite Lake on a good path and there are great views once at Warspite Lake.

Guide-book quality info for over 8,000 trails

View Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake on Map

View Map

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get a weekly dose of discounts and inspiration for adventure lovers

Route Description for Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake

Black Prince Interpretive Trail is a wonderful, family-friendly hike on the Smith-Dorrien. Close to Kananaskis Lakes, this is a good trail if you are camping nearby. More experienced hikers can continue past Warspite Lake right up into the Black Prince Cirque.

The start of the trail is at the signed trailhead, near the outhouses. From here, head out on an old logging road. After about 15 minutes cross a bridge over Smith Dorrien Creek and continue along the broad path. Soon it enters the forest and comes to a fork.

At the fork you can go either way, the right-hand trail takes you on a walk with interpretive posts and most people go in this direction.

In about an hour from leaving your car (faster if you aren’t hiking with little children) you reach Warspite Lake. This is a very pretty lake, and on calm, sunny days you will want to spend a while here, savouring the view of Black Prince Cirque high above and Mount Black Prince. The reflections in the lake can provide stunning photos, and you will find yourself snapping lots of pictures on a nice day.

At the lake, there is a path to your right that goes partially around Warspite Lake to the falls. There are small streams to hop over on the way, which is too much for little kids. This is a fun way to explore the area. Beware that this is a popular habitat for grizzlies.

Come back after exploring the side of the Warspite lake and you can find an interesting ‘rock garden’, which is a good place for lunch.

While you can return on the same path you hiked into Warspite Lake on, we prefer to take the variant path back to the car. This path soon connects with the main hike.

The views on the way down are better than the way up.

Check out other amazing hikes in Kananaskis – Smith Dorrien:

Insider Hints for Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake

  • Warspite Lake dries up as the summer goes on, especially if it’s very hot. Early July usually has the best combination of weather and water-levels, though it’s also the most crowded.
  • You can continue on to Black Prince Lakes by following a rough path at the far end of the lake that roughly follows Warspite Creek and then up to just below Black Prince Cirque.
  • There is great car camping nearby at the campgrounds near Kananaskis Lakes. Watch out for bears, as we’ve had them saunter through our campsite before!

Getting to the Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake Trailhead

From the Stoney Nakoda Casino on the TransCanada, take Highway 40 south for 50.0 km to the winter gate, and turn right onto the Kananaskis Lakes Trail (Highway 742). After 2.2 km turn right again on the Smith Dorrien Trail, which is the continuation of Highway 742. Follow this road for 8.4 km and take the signed left turn for Mount Black Prince and follow this to the parking lot.

Route Information

  • When to do

    When dry

  • Backcountry Campsites

    No

  • Toilets

    At trailhead

  • Family friendly

    Yes

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Lollipop

Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake Elevation Graph

Weather Forecast

Check Area Weather

Black Prince Interpretive Trail / Warspite Lake Reviews

Add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Nearby Trails

Nearby Regions

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get a weekly dose of discounts and inspiration for adventure lovers

Tours

Routes

Blogs