With Calgary being so close to the Rocky Mountains, there's always a plethora of hikes to choose from. Choosing the right hike can be difficult, especially because there can be so many options. Having a family complicates things, because you want something everyone can do. Today I'm going to list 5 hikes near Calgary that are great for people of all ages, especially families with small children.
#1: Troll Falls, Kananaskis
Troll Falls is one of the beast hikes I can recommend that's easy and rewarding. With little to no elevation gain, it makes for an easy hike but offers incredible views in the form of the Troll Falls Waterfall. The trail head is located near the Kananaskis Village, roughly 45 minutes outside of Calgary and makes for an excellent day trip. To learn more about the Troll Falls hike click HERE.
#2: Random Trails in Nose Hill Park, Calgary
My favourite park in the city of Calgary, Nose Hill offers a ton of hiking opportunities for being located right in the middle of the northwest. Not only is this one of the hikes near Calgary, but it's right in the city! The easiest place to hike is starting at the west parking lot, because from there you're already at the top of the hill. From that parking lot you can explore some of the treed areas that contain teepees made by others. If you want a little more incline I'd recommend the southeast parking lot near the Calgary Winter Club, simply because it has the best views of the park overlooking downtown. Want to see more of the hiking trails in Nose Hill Park? Click HERE.
#3: Silverton Falls Hike in Banff National Park
The Silverton Falls hiking trail is a bit harder than some of the other hikes on this list. It's located near the Castle Mountain Junction just west of Banff, very close to Johnston Canyon. The best thing about this trail is that you get to see a massive waterfall, and who doesn't like a good waterfall? The trail is only 0.7 kilometers long, although it does get a bit steep two thirds of the way into it. It's not a busy trail, since most people come to this area to do the Johnston Canyon hike just a stones throw down the road. It's about an hour and a half outside of Calgary, thus still good for a day trip! Want to see more of the Silverton Falls hike? Learn more by clicking HERE.
#4: Grotto Canyon, near Canmore and Exshaw
The Grotto Canyon hike is located off highway #1A near Exshaw/Canmore. It can be done in the winter, and I recommend crampons to do so. Hiking into the canyon is a surreal sight, and isn't a super hard challenge either. Before you round the final bend to the waterfall you'll see aboriginal drawings on the canyon walls. In the winter the whole canyon is covered in smooth blue coloured ice giving you excellent views the entire way. To reach the end of the hike is about 1.5 kilometers, which is a short distance for some unique views. If you want to see more about the Grotto Canyon hike click HERE for the summer click HERE for the winter.
#5: Jewell Bay, Kananaskis
The hike to the Jewell Bay Backcountry Campground starts at the Barrier Dam Day Use Area. It's definitely one of the easier hikes near Calgary. To get to the campground is roughly 3.9 kilometers and takes about 45 minutes to get to from Calgary. You only gain 100 meters of elevation gain for the entire hike, making it really flat. The hike takes you right around Barrier Lake, giving you breathtaking views for most of the hike. Once you reach Jewell Bay you should check out the backcountry campground and enjoy a picnic. If you want to learn more about this hike click HERE.
Hopefully you've found this list helpful in choosing a scenic hike that's great for all ages. Keep an eye out for more top places, because there's so much to explore in Alberta!
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