Troll Falls hike
Troll Falls is a classic, family-friendly hike near Nakiska, that’s popular year-round. While Troll Falls is nice, our favourite part of the walk is the return journey through Hay Meadow, where you walk along the Kananaskis River and have wonderful views.
From the Stoney Nakoda Casino on the TransCanada, take Highway 40 south for roughly 22.4km. Turn right onto Mt Allan Drive, signed for Nakiska. Follow this road for 1.0km, and take the signed right-hand turn for Stoney Trailhead. The road goes down and around to a parking lot.
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Route Description for Troll Falls
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 2 in our most recent hike.
After about 1.5km 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 are soon beside Marmot Creek, which you follow up to Troll Falls.
Troll Falls are a pleasant waterfall, and you can walk on a short trail to the left of Troll 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 people 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 5 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 150m 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 300m, 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 place 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 eye out for a turn to the right, where you can see the electricity poles, and take it. Follow the path for 75m and come to the gravel road below the electricity poles, turn left and you are back at your car.
Have a look at the map before you do this hike, it helps you understand the general direction you are going. 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 good hike.
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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