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Horseback Riding

Noel Hendrickson

Horseback Riding in Banff and Lake Louise

There is something very special about waking up in the morning, saddling your horse, and exploring the wilderness of Banff National Park from atop of your long-legged steed. By horseback, you travel at a steady rhythm, without being confined to roads or disturbing the tranquility around you. Following trails through vibrant alpine pastures, traversing mountain passes, or fording rushing rivers, horseback riding in Banff and Lake Louise is a strikingly memorable experience.

Few things will make you feel as invincible as looking at the world while sitting on horseback.– Sabina Trojanova, Elite Daily, December 2015

Experience the renown high country of Banff National Park and relive the ranching way of life on one of Banff and Lake Louise’s spectacular horseback tours. A variety of ranches around Banff and Lake Louise offer trips for all ability levels. From an hour-long introductory lesson to multiple day tours in the pristine backcountry, you can be trotting and cantering through the mountains no matter your level of experience. 

Cowboy hats are provided by outfitters to help you fit the part of a true Albertan rancher. Jeans, large belt buckles, and cowboy boots are optional, however sturdy shoes are highly recommended.

Day Tours

Explore the mountains and Alberta’s ranching history with a half- or full-day tour offered by one of the horse ranches around Banff and Lake Louise. Seize the opportunity to experience the stunning scenery from the unique perspective on horseback. Take an introductory tour to become more comfortable on horses and experience what the original ranchers might have felt, or join a longer tour as you are led into the wilds around Banff and Lake Louise. Longer tours may give you the opportunity to circumnavigate a mountain, explore the high country, or ride from Lake Louise to a historic tea house. 

For those who would rather sit back and relax, there is the option of a horse-drawn carriage ride, which could be pretty romantic with the right person sitting beside you.– Sabina Trojanova, Elite Daily, December 2015 

Some even offer cowboy cookouts – a lunch or dinner held at a remote cabin or outpost. Go by horseback, or for young or more nervous riders, by wagon and enjoy an authentic cowboy dinner. 

Backcountry Trips

If a day of exploring on horseback isn’t enough, take an overnight or multi-day tour. Ride through jaw-dropping scenery during the day, and by night, stay in a backcountry cabin or rustic tent camps like the original cowboys did. Tell stories while sitting around the campfire exchanging stories with other guests and fall asleep admiring the starry skies. The next morning, after a cup of freshly brewed "cowboy coffee", you’ll be on your way exploring more spectacular scenery.