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Kootenay National Park

Day Hikes

View from the top of the Stanley Glacier hike
Stanley Glacier Trail © Parks Canada

Challenge yourself on the 16.5-kilometre Kindersley-Sinclair Loop through alpine meadows and over mountain ridges, or set out an ambitious 8.4-kilometre day hike through naturally fire-swept forest to the active Stanley Glacier.

Trail Distance (km) Time Elevation (m) Description
Easy Trails
Helmet - Ochre Junction 12.6 4 hours 50 A good backpacking destination for beginners through lush forest. Alternatively, a 4 hour day hike.
Numa Creek
Closed for 2016
12.8 4 hours 60 An easy, forested creekside trail. Alternatively, a 4 hour day hike.
Simpson River Up to 17.6 Up to 5.5 hours 140 Fire in 2001 opened up this long, easy trail which leads to Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park.
Prospector's Valley Up to 20.8 Up to 6.5 hours 200 A gentle trail through regenerating forest, featuring open views and wildflowers.
Moderate Trails
Stanley Glacier 8.4 3 hours 365 A popular half-day trail climbing through a regenerating forest to talus slopes beneath cliffs and glaciated peaks.
Kimpton Creek 9.6 3 hours 335 A cool forested trail on a hot day.
Difficult Trails
Kindersley / Sinclair Loop 17.5 6 hours 1055 Kootenay’s top-rated loop. Trailheads are 1.2 km apart.
Hawk Creek & Ball Pass 20.2 7 hours 885 A challenging day hike to a rocky, rugged pass.
Floe Lake 21 7 hours 715 A classic. Spectacular lakeside destination.

Trail Descriptions

For maps, detailed route finding and trail descriptions, visit the Kootenay Visitor Centre or purchase a hiking guide book and topographical map.

Helmet - Ochre Junction

Length: 12.6 km
Hiking time: 4 hours
Elevation: 50 m
Trailhead: Paint Pots parking lot, 84 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested trail with lush ground cover leading to a river. 

Description: A good backpacking destination for beginners through lush forest. Alternatively, a 4 hour day hike.

Backpacking: This trail leads to the Helmet / Ochre Junction backcountry campground. It is the northernmost access point for the popular Rockwall multiday backpacking route.

Numa Creek

Numa Creek Trail is closed for 2016. 

Length: 12.8 km
Hiking time: 4 hours
Elevation: 60 m
Trailhead: Numa Falls parking lot, 80 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested, creekside trail opening into prominent avalanche paths.

Description: An easy, forested creekside trail. Alternatively, a 4 hour day hike.

Backpacking: This trail leads to the Numa Creek backcountry campround and is a middle access point for the popular Rockwall multiday backpacking route.

Simpson River

Length: Up to 17.6 km
Hiking time: Up to 5.5 hours
Elevation: 140 m
Trailhead: Simpson River parking lot, 57 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested trail near a three valley confluence. Watch for evidence of wildlife.

Description: Fire in 2001 opened up this long, easy trail which leads to Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park.

Backpacking: This trail leads into Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park in British Columbia.

Prospector's Valley

Length: Up to 20.8 km
Hiking time: Up to 6.5 hours
Elevation: 200 m
Trailhead: Marble Canyon parking lot, 89 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested trail with prominent avalanche slopes. Watch for bears and wildflowers.

Description: A gentle trail through regenerating forest, featuring open views and wildflowers.

Stanley Glacier

Length: 8.4 km
Hiking time: 3 hours
Elevation: 365 m
Trailhead: Stanley Glacier parking lot, 91 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Regenerating forest, glacier, glacial moraine, cliffs, many small mammals. Watch for fossils.

Description: A popular half-day trail climbing through a regenerating forest to talus slopes beneath cliffs and glaciated peaks.

Kimpton Creek

Length: 9.6 km
Hiking time: 3 hours
Elevation: 335 m
Trailhead: Kimpton Creek parking lot, 9 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested trail with prominent avalanche slopes. Watch for bears.

Description: A cool forested trail on a hot day.

Kindersley – Sinclair Loop

Length: 17.5 km
Hiking time: 6 hours
Elevation: 1055 m
Trailhead: Kindersley Pass parking lot, 12 km east of Radium Hot Springs OR Sinclair Creek parking lot, 11 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Forested trail with avalanche slopes and rocky ridges. Watch for bears.

Description: This is the parks top-rated loop, climbing to alpine meadows. Due to grizzly bear activity, Group of 4 Access is usually in place by midsummer. Check the Trail Report.

Hawk Creek & Ball Pass

Length: 20.2 km
Hiking time: 7 hours
Elevation: 885 m
Trailhead: Floe Lake parking lot, 72 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Regenerating, post-burn forest.

Description: A challenging day hike to a rocky, rugged pass providing access to the Shadow Lake and Egypt Lake regions of Banff National Park.

Backpacking: This trail leads to backcountry camping in the Shadow Lake area of Banff National Park.

Floe Lake

Length: 21 km
Hiking time: 7 hours
Elevation: 715 m
Trailhead: Floe Lake parking lot, 72 km east of Radium Hot Springs.
Habitat: Open and meadowy trail, burnt forest, glaciers, peaks and a large lake.

Description: A classic! Spectacular lakeside destination and the southern-most access point for The Rockwall.

Backpacking: This trail leads to the Floe Lake backcountry campground and is the southernmost access point for the popular Rockwall Trail, multi-day route.