Alberta in June

May 23rd, 2018, 06:25 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 2
Alberta in June

Hello all,
My father and I will be travelling to Alberta this June, from the 9th-20th. We will be spending 2 nights in Banff, 2 in Lake Louise, 3 in Jasper, and 3 in Golden (BC) before returning to Calgary. We are both in quite good shape and are mostly looking for half- to full-day hikes and great views.
Some which I have looked at so far include: Arnica Lake, Cory Pass, Sentinel Pass, Plain of 6 Glacier, Wilcox Pass, Iceline Trail
Obviously trail conditions will still be quite wintry above the valleys, however we have experience/equipment for snowy (but safe) conditions. Mostly looking for advice on which trails in each of the above areas have the best chance of being open, as well as areas to avoid. Thanks in advance for all of your help.

dshammy is offline  
May 24th, 2018, 12:10 PM
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 581
When you say experience/equipment, exactly what do you mean? It's one thing to have good hiking boots, poles, gaiters etc., another to have training/experience to assess avalanche conditions and to travel on steeper snow covered slopes. A mountaineering axe and self arrest training/practice if you need to cross steep snowy areas?

If not, I'd stick to areas that are clear of avy risk and get good up to date trail reports from the Parks Canada Centres before heading out. Just because there are tracks or other people are on the trail doesn't necessarily mean it's safe and/or a good idea. Anyway, I do think some of your options may be possibilities. It all depends on the weather between now & then and how much snow melts off in the next couple of weeks.

The Iceline Trail almost certainly will not be doable. The Little Yoho Valley Road is not schedule to reopen until mid to late June, so chances are you will not even be able to get to the trailhead. Even if the road opens by the end of your trip, likely the trail will still be snowbound and it most certainly has avalanche risk. Usually it's not an option until very late June or early July. Several years ago there was hip deep snow in early July.

Likely to be too early for Sentinel Pass as well - still very much snowbound right now and the pass itself has considerable avalanche risk. Someone came within a very, very close whisker of being killed by an avalanche there this spring (skiing). By your visit, getting up into Larch Valley might well be possible, albeit still snowy. But I would not venture up on to the pass unless the avy risk is pass and you are comfortable with the conditions - i.e. it's snow free enough that you aren't risking a fall. It's quite steep and a slip & fall could result in serious injury/death.

Plain of Six Glacier probably will be OK, though be prepared for snow - and possibly a fair bit - up by the teahouse. And some clambering over avy debris.

Wilcox Pass also should be OK, at least towards the end of your trip. More likely to be muddy with residual snow patches. Have good boots because you need to stay on the trail - even if mucky - to prevent damage to the delicate alpine landscape. And to keep your feet try and there is likely to be one or more pretty wet stream crossings.

Cory Pass may or may not be option. The Cory Pass side gets quite a bit of sun, so tend to dry out quicker than the Edith Pass side. Check trail conditions - it might well be doable, albeit muddy. However, the Edith Pass side can be quite snowy and have lingering issues with avy risk and steep/icy snow much longer. So it may be going up and down Cory Pass.

Guessing Arnica Lake would be OK, but check the trail reports closer to the day. There are also a number of trail and/or parking area closures in Kootenay NP due to construction, so check to ensure about access to trails in that area.
kgsneds is offline  
May 25th, 2018, 04:07 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 2
Thanks for all of the details. We will definitely stick to those areas which have been cleared from avalanche risk and be checking with the park centers. Are there any trails you would recommend above the ones I've mentioned?
dshammy is offline  
May 25th, 2018, 12:55 PM
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 581
Definitely keep an eye on trail reports and check in with the Parks Canada Centres when you arrive. We've been having very warm weather, so conditions can change week to week. Some of those areas may well be doable by your trip, but hard to know at this point.

Right now, I hear mostly about people hiking in the Canmore/K-Country area - Ha Ling, EEOR, Baldy, Heart Mountain, Grotto, Lady Mac.
kgsneds is offline  
Related Topics
Original Poster
Last Post
Sep 17th, 2006 03:00 PM
United States
Apr 8th, 1997 02:24 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:16 PM.