Common menu bar links

Glacier National Park


Nakimu Caves
© Parks Canada

*Please note: Cavers must apply to the Superintendent for entry into any cave.

The Nakimu Caves lie between upper and lower Cougar Valley in the Selkirk Mountains, just west of Rogers Pass on the Trans-Canada Highway. The Caves are reached by hiking three to four hours up and over a mountain pass from the highway, and from there into the Cougar Valley. This constitutes an elevation gain of over 800 metres--followed by an elevation loss and gain again! This is a trip for persons of above-average fitness. Usually caving groups camp in Balu Pass and then travel down into the Cougar Valley, explore the caves, and come back up and hike out as a full day. Camping in Balu Pass is restricted to groups with permits to enter Nakimu Caves.

Visitors' efforts will be rewarded by the unique experience of descending, by the light of headlamps, into the dark labyrinth of the caves. Numerous passageways and grottos, totalling 5.9km in length, contain intriguing natural features such as soda straws, rock fluting and moon milk. Short steep scrambles and uncertain footing are characteristic of the cave experience.

Park visitors can may access the caves by either joining a commercially led trip, or applying for their own entry date. Contact the Park office in Revelstoke for an application package and information. Allow two weeks for processing. Parties must consist of between six and twelve people, and be led by experienced cavers.

More insight into the Nakimu Caves experience