Troll Falls Hike
Troll Falls is a classic, family-friendly hike near Nakiska, that’s popular year-round. While Troll Falls is certainly a pretty view, our favourite part of the walk is the return journey through Hay Meadow, where you walk along the Kananaskis River and take in wonderful views.
The trailhead parking lot as well as all the surrounding trails are closed for repairs until further notice.
To get to the start of the Troll Falls trailhead, from the Stoney Nakoda Casino on the TransCanada, take Highway 40 south for roughly 13.9mi. Turn right onto Mt Allan Drive, signed for Nakiska. Follow this road for 0.6mi, and take the signed right-hand turn for Stoney Trailhead. The road goes down and around to a parking lot.
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Troll Falls Hike
Troll Falls Trail Description
Troll Falls is a pleasant hike perfect for families. The path to Troll Falls is clear, and the return journey through Hay Meadow offers wonderful views of the surrounding peaks.
From the Stoney Trailhead, do not take the gravel path that follows the powerlines, instead look for a path going to the left into the trees. Follow this broad path, as it goes through the forest.
While walking, keep your eyes open for little Troll dolls in the trees. While at one point there were dozens of Troll dolls, we only found two on our most recent hike.
After about 0.9mi the path splits, with the right-hand path going to Hay Meadow, and the left-hand path continuing to Troll Falls. Go left and you’ll soon arrive next to Marmot Creek, which you follow up to Troll Falls.
Troll Falls is a pleasant waterfall, and you can walk on a short trail to the left of falls, to get closer to the cliffs. Children love getting close to the rock wall and looking around this pretty place.
From Troll Falls, most hikers simply walk back the way they came, which is a bit of a shame, as you can also visit Hay Meadow, which is very pretty.
To get to Hay Meadow, follow the route back down Marmot Creek for five minutes or so. Along the way, you pass several smaller trails branching off to your left, but you’re looking for a broad path that goes to the left, where the trail you came in on goes to the right.
Take this new trail and in about 492ft pass over a gravel road (and under the electricity wires) and continue on the other side into the woods.
Go through the forest and hike for about 984ft, and you will soon come to a log building. Go to the right of this building and you will almost immediately come to a gravel road, which you cross, before you go to the left of another log building and come to the Kananaskis River.
The views here are great, looking across the Kananaskis River at Wasootch Peak, Kananaskis Peak and Old Baldy Peak. Provided it’s later in the season and the river isn’t running high, you can go down to the river and toss rocks in it, lots of fun for the kids. This is also a great spot for family photos.
From the Kananaskis River, take the clear trail as it heads off to the south. You have 1.0km until your next turn, and along the way you’ll get another nice view of the Kananaskis River and then spend some time in a trail in the forest.
Keep your eyes peeled for a turn to the right, where you can see the electricity poles, and take it. Follow the path for 246ft and come to the gravel road below the electricity poles, turn left and you’ve arrivedback at your car.
Hiking trail highlights
This stunning waterfall is a little hidden gem within Kananaskis Country. This waterfall is unique in that you can easily explore the base of the falls, which makes for some pretty incredible photos–especially during the winter when the water freezes over. You can even hike behind the falls, just be sure to bring crampons during the icy season.
The surrounding cliffs are rocky and jagged, which also makes for fun exploring. You’ll feel as if you’re standing at the bottom of a basin. During the warmer months, the mist feels incredible on a hot day and the water can dazzle in shades of Kool-Aid blue!
This mountain river is a highlight of Alberta! Stretching the entire length of Kananaskis Country, it’s hard to miss. The river originates in the Canadian Rockies, before flowing down to trickle through Upper and Lower Kananaskis Lakes. It even feeds into the popular Bow River, running 46.0mi in length. Three dams were built in previous years to help regulate the flow and keep the surrounding areas from flooding. Now, the river is a popular spot to enjoy a canoe or kayak paddle, as well as rafting.
Find more great hikes in Kananaskis Country:
Have a look at the map before you do this hike, it helps to understand the general direction you are going in. Use the corridor for the electricity poles as a marker while you hike.
Troll Falls is spectacular in winter, as the falls are frozen. You may need microspikes or snowshoes, but this is a great winter hike. Check out the Troll Falls snowshoe guide for more information.
While there are some paths that lead up to view the falls from above, Alberta Parks advises hikers that the trail is only maintained to Troll Falls and not the areas beyond. There is a significant fall hazard if you venture beyond the sanctioned trail.
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