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A family of four take a selfie in front of a small waterfall on a sunny summer day
The Real Banff / Published: Mon, 03/28/2022 - 11:15

What to Expect in Banff and Lake Louise in June

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Welcome summer! Warm days have finally arrived, and we couldn’t be more here for it. 

It’s a short season but definitely worth the visit. On your holiday, you’ll see deep turquoise lakes, towering mountains, blooming wildflowers, and maybe even the odd wild animal. 

For these reasons and so many more, it can be a popular time to holiday here.

Here’s what you can expect to see, do, and experience in Banff and Lake Louise in June. 

The Weather

June swiftly ushers summer in with the solstice on the 21, and with it comes long days and warmer temperatures. It also brings what locals call “monsoon June,” when the area can see large amounts of rainfall. 

If you’re planning a trip during this time and are a fair-weather explorer, give yourself some wiggle room in your plans, especially if you’re looking forward to outdoor adventures. 

One pleasant note is that it doesn’t generally get too hot this time of year, which gives you ample opportunity to enjoy the mountains. 

Banff Daytime 19°C (66.2°F) 

Banff Overnight 5°C (41°F) 

Lake Louise Daytime 17°C (62.6°F)

Lake Louise Overnight 3°C (37.4°F)

What to Pack

Warm days are here to stay (for a few months at least). When packing, be sure to include shorts/skirts, pants, t-shirts, and long-sleeved shirts, because while the days may be warm, the nights can get cool. 

For footwear, you’ll want good walking shoes so you can park your car and explore on foot. Your shoe choice should consider the amount of rain we can get, making waterproof options essential. 

The same goes for a wind-breaking jacket that can play double-duty as a raincoat. The mountains have a lot to offer, rain or shine, when you dress accordingly.

What to See and Do

The Banff Marathon

Held yearly in June, the Banff Marathon brings runners from all over for this sub-alpine race. Don't worry; you'll get all the stunning views without much elevation gain as the routes mostly loop through town. The marathon, half-marathon, and 10k heats book out months in advance, so register early!

Runners cross a bridge over a turquoise river on a sunny summer day with mountains in the background
Pam Doyle
Banff Marathon

Get on the Water

There aren’t many lakes that allow motorized boats as a national park, but Lake Minnewanka is an exception. Take the heated, covered Boat Cruise and learn about the history of the lake. 

June is one of the Rockies’ best months for water sports while the snow up high is still melting. Some trails might still be snowbound, but on the water, your options are wide open so choose your vessel and enjoy the ride! Visit the Banff Canoe Club to rent a canoe, kayak, or stand-up paddleboard, enjoy whitewater rafting with an experienced guide or a leisurely river raft with Rocky Mountain Raft Tours

A Stop On the Cross-Canada Camping Route

There are a handful of campsites available in Banff and Lake Louise. If you’re looking to tent or RV, you’ll want to book in advance through Parks Canada. Camping isn’t permitted on roadsides or other public spaces, so having a reservation is the only way to do it. 

All of the campsites are short drives from town, and you can easily leave your vehicle parked to get around on foot, by bike, or with public transport. It’s recommended that you don’t drive since there can be limited parking near popular attractions, and some roadways are for pedestrians only. 

Backcountry camping is available in the park but does take particular skills and equipment to achieve. If you’re new to it, try a backcountry lodge first. 

The Migration North 

By June, many of our feather friends have returned to Banff, making it an excellent time for bird watching. Birders head out at dawn, binoculars or telephoto lens in hand, to the Cave and Basin marsh or Vermilion Lakes. If you want to know all the best birding spots, take a tour with Great Divide Nature Interpretation.

Should you find yourself near the Cave and Basin, know it’s well worth the entry fee. Here you’ll learn about its use by Indigenous Peoples, its “discovery” by the Europeans, and the birth of Canada’s national parks system.

On the Path 

June is prime season for biking in the mountains. Several road bike trails can take you between Canmore, Banff, and Lake Louise, and expert cyclists can make it all the way to Jasper. 

Check out Golf Course Road, the Minnewanka Loop, Vermilion Lakes, or the Bow Valley Parkway for easy and moderate rides around town. 

Select mountain biking trails are available, but the tracks here cater more to beginner and intermediate riders. 

There are some shops in Banff and Lake Louise that rent bikes, e-bikes, and scooters.

Bikes on the Bow Valley Parkway in Banff.

See the Famous Lake Louise

Also known as Ho-run-num-nay (lake of the little fishes) to the Stoney Nakoda, this lake is revered worldwide for its awe-invoking turquoise colour. By now, it’s generally thawed out, and it can be one of the best times to visit with fewer crowds. 

Book afternoon tea at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, or stop for lunch at one of their restaurants while you’re here. 

A couple smile and laugh on the shore of Lake Louise with vibrant turquoise water and snow capped mountains (and a glacier) behind them

The Start of Hiking Season 

Now that the snow has started to melt, the trails begin to reopen. You’ll have access to a lot more of the Banff National Park trail network, though it could still be muddy. Bring sturdy, waterproof hiking boots and Gaiters with you. 

Pack a sketchbook or guidebook for close observation and identification of the wildflowers abound! They take over the valleys and lower elevation trails this time of year.

A family hikes along a path through a dense forest with the summer sun peeking through the trees
Noel Hendrickson

Soar Through the Air

One of the most unique ways of seeing the park is from a birds-eye perspective. Heli-sightseeing gets you up high for sightseeing at its best. With snow still on the mountain tops and lakes below displaying incredible shades of blue, June is a perfect month to book a helicopter tour. Fly with Alpine HelicoptersCMH, or Rockies Heli Tours.

Helicopter flying near Banff National Park.

Banff Farmer's Market

The Banff Farmer’s Market (formerly the Banff Mountain Market) is a summer tradition held every Wednesday from noon to 6 pm until October 6, rain or shine. The market is located in Central Park, right off Banff Ave and offers a beautiful mountain backdrop. The market provides an excellent selection of over 80 local and regional vendors selling fruits, vegetables, food trucks, artwork, jewelry, apparel, beauty products, coffee, and much more. Pick up something fresh and local on your next mid-week journey to Banff.

Location: Banff Central Park (110 Bear St)

Event Dates: Every Wednesday starting in June

Time: noon to 6 pm

 Banff National Park Pass Required

Make sure you purchase your Parks Pass in advance for express entry into the park. All of the details, including frequently asked questions can be found on our Purchase a National Park Pass page.

Plan Your Stay

Browse and book accommodation and lodging packages with our trip planning tool. To learn about the different types of accommodation available in Banff and Lake Louise, visit our Places to Stay page or Contact Us to speak to a local expert.