1℃ / 34


  • Sun
    4℃ / 39
  • Mon
    5℃ / 41


Snowshoeing, Bow Lake, Banff National Park
Noel Hendrickson
Bow Lake


If you were honest, you had not been all that keen to leave the cozy warmth of your room, but your friends had insisted you join them on their snowshoe outing. You had never worn snowshoes before and they felt rather clumsy when you tried them on in the store, but as soon as you hit the snowy woods it all made sense. It was so quiet and still, the air was crisp and pure and the beauty of the snow-laden trees prompted you to stop several times for a photo. It felt so refreshing. It was most definitely worth getting out. 

Winter is a great time to get outside in Banff & Lake Louise. The air is fresh and crisp and the snow-blanketed landscape so beautiful and quiet. Snowshoeing is a great choice for a fun winter activity because it’s easy to learn, inexpensive, and can be enjoyed by people of all ages, fitness levels, and experience.  

Prime snowshoeing season in Banff & Lake Louise is normally late December through to early April. There are many options for routes and trails ranging from short, easy walks around town to backcountry epics. The Parks Canada has a long list of trails to try. Some special highlights include the Marsh Loop, a great choice for families, offering expansive views of the Bow Valley and lots of birdlife during the winter; and the Ink Pots via Moose Meadows trail, which takes you through dense forest to brilliantly coloured mineral springs in an open meadow. 

If you don’t have your own pair of snowshoes, there are many places where you can buy or rent a pair in Banff & Lake Louise.

It is important to check the weather and avalanche report before heading out - you don’t need to venture far to be in avalanche terrain. Make sure you’re wearing suitable clothes and carrying food, drink, and extra layers. For more information about winter hiking safety and trails, see the Parks list of TrailsC​anada website