Hike across the gorgeous, remote Wapta Icefields
If you want to access terrain enjoyed by few, the Hiking the Wapta Icefields tour is the ideal chance to escape your routine and seek the mountains. This hiking adventure in the Canadian Rockies departs from stunning Bow Lake to leave everyone else behind, travelling deep into the mountains.
Crossing the Wapta Icefield, you’ll spend your days hiking across vast glacial ice and admiring the spires of mountains that surround you on all sides. Completely surrounded by unbeatable mountain scenery, you’ll leave cell service behind and explore like the first adventurers did! For a trek that’s as beautiful as it is rewarding and refreshing, choose the Hiking the Wapta Icefields tour.
Highlights of the Hiking the Wapta Icefields
Hiking the Wapta Icefields Itinerary
Day 1 Meet in Canmore, Bow Lake and Bow Hut
The tour begins in Canmore, where you’ll meet the team and go over your equipment. Drive to Bow Lake and begin hiking to Bow Hut, following the lakeshore up to the nearby river flats. Cross a boulder bridge over a river gorge to pick up the mountaineer’s trail, hiking past moraines and forest into a spectacular cirque.
A final ascent brings you to Bow Hut, which has magnificent views of the surrounding mountain valley.
Overnight Location: Bow Hut in Canadian Rockies
Distance: 3-5 hours, 7km, 400m elevation gain
Meals: Lunch, dinner
Day 2 Bow Hut to Peyto Hut
Rise early today, wasting no time in heading out towards Peyto Hut. You’ll hike the gentle slopes of the Bow Glacier underneath Mt. St. Nicholas, reaching the flat expanse of the Wapta Icefield. With a stellar panorama to enjoy, you’ll find Peyto Hut. Depending on the conditions, you may be able to hike a bit further today if you’d like to.
Rest up and enjoy a night surrounded by summits and glacial ice.
Overnight Location: Peyto Hut in Canadian Rockies
Distance: 4-6 hours, 6km, 550m elevation gain
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 3 Peyto Hut to Peyto Lake
Today will be mostly downhill as you descend the glacier. Stepping across white ice, see how glaciers preserve the past, observing rocks, needles, and ice coming to the surface that are hundreds of years old. The glacier is retreating every year and your guide will be able to show you just how large and magnificent it once was.
Traverse the top of a moraine before descending into the valley below, reaching the gravel flats near Peyto Lake. Emerge near the lake and celebrate the end of your trek!
Overnight Location: None
Distance: 9km, 400m elevation gain
Meals: Breakfast, lunch
Hiking the Wapta Icefields Price and Dates
This guided hiking tour in the Canadian Rockies is run as a fixed-departure tour where you’d be joining a group, however, custom private tours can be organized for those willing to travel with their group only (please contact us with your preferred date and the number of people in your group and we will create the itinerary just for you). Please note that due to very high demand and limited availability in campgrounds it is necessary to plan your trip a long time in advance.
Prices below are per person:
Accommodation on the Hiking the Wapta Icefields Tour
This tour is based in mountain huts. Sleeping areas are communal and the facilities are basic. There is no running water, but you will gather water as needed.
In some cases, the accommodation listed below may need to be substituted for other comparable accommodations.
Single Rooms and Solo Travellers
There are no single rooms available on this tour as all accommodations are communal. The minimum group size is 4 people, so please contact us about joining an existing group if you are a solo traveller.
Hotels on Standard Tour
Bow Hut in the Canadian Rockies
This hut is operated by the Alpine Club of Canada and provides basic accommodations in a stunning location.
Peyto Hut in the Canadian Rockies
This hut is operated by the Alpine Club of Canada and offers you the chance to sleep among the mountains with basic facilities.
What’s Included in the Hiking the Wapta Icefields Tour?
2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners, and snacks during hikes are included.
Accommodations for 2 nights are included.
Transportation During the Tour
Participants are responsible for their own transportation to and from Canmore. You will be transferred from Canmore to the trailhead.
- Excess luggage storage
- Meals, drinks, or snacks
- Travel insurance
- Optional excursions
- Visas if required
- Anything not mentioned as included
- GST (5%)
- Special dietary restrictions (vegan, gluten-free, lactose-free, allergies, and more) will incur a fee of $17/day except for vegetarian meals, which are not surcharged
- Any 3 dietary restrictions together will incur a $31/day surcharge
Frequently Asked Questions about Hiking the Wapta Icefields
Located in Canmore, Alberta at the gates of Banff National Park, Yamnuska Mountain Adventures is one of Canada’s premier providers of mountaineering, rock & ice climbing, backcountry skiing, hiking, and trekking experiences in the Canadian Rockies. For over 40 years, we have hosted thousands of clients from Canada and all over the world. Our brand is known for quality mountain experiences, safety, and well-organized itineraries. We have some of the best mountain guides and hiking guides in the industry. All Yamnuska Mountain Adventures climbing guides are certified through the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides.Learn More
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