In 1903, the CPR established Bankhead coal mine and town on the lower slopes of Cascade mountain. At its peak, the mine employed three hundred men and produced half a million tons of coal a year. The town considered to be the most modern in Alberta, had more amenities and was busier then Banff. By 1922, production and profits were down, the miners were on strike; CPR shut the mine down.
Today, an easy 1.1 km loop trail leads through the ruins of the coal mining operation. Interpretive plaques beside some of the foundations bare photographs and descriptions of the buildings that once stood there. A few ruins of the residential area of Bankhead are located in the Upper Bankhead picnic area. A hiking trail follow the abandoned Bankhead railway line to the Cascade ponds day use area 2.5 km away.
Address: Located on Lake Minnewanka Rd, 7.4 km from Banff PO Box 900 Banff, AB T1L 1K2