Little Lougheed

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Hard
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.
3-6h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
5.5 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.
780 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.
9.0
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.
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more 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.
Advanced (Diamond)
Suitable for advanced experience level looking for a solid adventure.
Read Reviews
Directions to Trailhead
Panorama of Little Lougheed snowshoeing trail in Kananaskis near Canmore

The snowshoe up to Little Lougheed offers a perfect vantage point to view the spectacular Spray Lakes Reservoir and the snowy peaks surrounding it. An entertaining maze of boulders on the ascent and the challenging avalanche terrain turns this shorter route into a challenging and interesting day out!

Guide-book quality info for over 8,000 trails

View Little Lougheed on Map

View Map

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get a weekly dose of discounts and inspiration for adventure lovers

Route Description for Little Lougheed

Anyone on a snowshoe trip should have Avalanche training, we recommend AST 2 for all backcountry travellers, and AST 1 is the minimum. It is important to note that when travelling through avalanche terrain it is extremely valuable to always have a companion.

Little Lougheed is a western outlier of Mt. Lougheed. The snowshoe route up Little Lougheed starts at Spencer Creek (the creek flowing down from between Mt. Sparrowhawk and Mt. Lougheed), about 2.8 km south of Spurling Creek (signed) on the Smith-Dorrien highway. A clearing by the road allows you to see the route up from here.

You will follow the left/north bank of Spencer Creek and begin ascending a steep section along the ridge crest. A few hundred metres up, there will be a boulder field with nice views of Spray Lakes. There may be sections of wind swept and rocky terrain, where you may need to remove your snowshoes to walk. Bring microspikes for extra grip in the case you need to switch over to walking.

The average snowshoer should take a bit more than two hours to reach treeline, which is fifteen minutes below the summit of Little Lougheed. You will be travelling on loose rock after reaching treeline. It is often best to wear microspikes here, depending on conditions. Watch for potentially large cornices on the way to the summit, and be sure not to step out off of the ridge onto overhanging snow.

The views from the summit are superb and easily rival some of the bigger snowshoeing trips in the area. The entire Spray Lakes reservoir is visible to the west and Mounts Lougheed and Sparrowhawk dominate the view to the east and south. This trip is definitely worth repeating, and potentially a nice summer hike as well.

Insider Hints for Little Lougheed

  • Be sure to bring microspikes as the final section of the ascent is usually not snow covered.
  • Fill-up on bagels in Canmore before the hike at the Rocky Mountain Bagel Co.
  • Snowshoeing in the Kananaskis is a remote activity. Make sure you are prepared for an emergency with warm clothes, extra food, matches and ideally a satellite transceiver, like a Garmin InReach. Cell phones do not work until you get to Canmore.
  • Always check the avalanche forecast for Kananaskis before heading out.

Getting to the Little Lougheed Trailhead

From the Canmore Nordic Centre, continue west on the Smith-Dorrien (Hwy 742) as it winds up into the Spray Valley for 21.5 km. Park on the left-hand side of the road by Spencer Creek.

Route Information

  • When to do

    December - April

  • Mountain Huts

    None

  • Toilets

    Several day use areas along 742

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Avalanche Risk

    Challenging

  • Family friendly

    No

  • Route Signage

    None

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Out and back

Little Lougheed Elevation Graph

Weather Forecast

Check Area Weather

Little Lougheed 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