Hold a 505 million year old fossil in your hand. Explore the remains of an ancient sea in the sky with hands-on activities and storytelling. Book early as these popular hikes fill up fast and are limited to a maximum of 12 people per hike. Professional guided hikes to Burgess Shale locations are offered by both Parks Canada and the Burgess Shale Geoscience Foundation

A family learns about the Burgess Shale
Walcott Quarry: Classic expedition

This classic journey begins at spectacular Takakkaw Falls in Yoho National Park, British Columbia.

Animated drawing of a Burgess Shale creature
Mount Stephen: Stone bugs galore

Hike to the site in Yoho National Park where railway workers reported finding ‘stone bugs’ in the 1880s.

Three women with fossils
Stanley Glacier: Kootenay fossils revealed

This family-oriented hike provides an excellent introduction to the Burgess Shale on a relatively easy trail.

Information panel on a guided hike
Make a reservation

Reservations are required. Book online or by phone.

What to bring

A day of hiking in the Rockies requires preparation. Conditions can change rapidly in the mountains and higher elevations increase your exposure to the sun and stormy weather.  To have a safe and fun time outdoors you will need to bring:

Hikers preparing for a trip to the Burgess Shale
  • Warm layers of clothes (no cotton), rain jacket and rain pants, winter gloves, and a winter toque / hat
  • Hearty lunch and multiple snacks
  • Drinking water, at least 2 litres or ½ gallon per person
  • Sturdy and worn in hiking boots and extra wool socks 
  • Hiking poles (required for the Mount Stephen hike)
  • Sturdy and supportive backpack with a waist belt
  • Sunscreen, sunglasses, sun hat, insect repellent
  • Toilet paper in a plastic bag for disposal, hand sanitizer
  • Reading glasses, if you wear them
  • Blister kit and personal medical supplies (just in case)
  • Sorry, no pets please.
  • Camera!