Athabasca Falls Trail – Best Canadian Rockies Day Hikes

#33 – Canadian Rockies Day Hikes: Athabasca Falls Trail

Athabasca Falls Trail
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  • Location: Jasper National Park
  • Trailhead: Athabasca Falls
  • Type: Out-n-back
  • Rating: Easy
  • Total Distance: 0.6-miles
  • Total Elevation Gain: 151′
  • Recommended Time: 1 hour
  • Recommended Season: May – October

Athabasca Falls

Athabasca Waterfall
Athabasca Falls is one of the largest flow waterfalls in Jasper National Park.

The powerful 75’ Athabasca Falls is one of Jasper National Park’s iconic waterfalls. A massive amount of the Athabasca River flows over this easily accessed waterfall. The Athabasca Falls Trail crosses directly over the water as it crashed into the canyon beneath. This trail gives visitors great views of the torrent of water flowing through the small gorge.

The Athabasca Falls Trail Spurs

Once across the bridge visitors can go to the left where arguably better views of the waterfall await. Hikers can also take a right where the path descends through an old canyon where the river once flowed thousands of years ago. This is a truly special and unique experience where the walls have been polished by the torrent of water that once flowed.

Athabasca Falls Trail
The Athabasca Falls Trail leads through a dried-out canyon where the water once flowed adjacent to the present-day canyon.

Below Athabasca Falls

Athabasca Canyon
The Athabasca Waterfall plunges into this short narrow canyon. The 93A road passes directly over the canyon via the pictured bridge.

This short spur on the Athabasca Falls Trail also leads explorers to another viewpoint below the waterfall at the base of the short canyon. There is yet another spur off this one that leads down to the much wider and calmer waters along the river below the canyon. This is a great spot to have breakfast and watch as the calm and wide river flows away from the torrent of the falls.

Get an Early Start

Athabasca Falls Flow
The Athabasca River plunges over the waterfall in Jasper National Park.

The Athabasca Falls area has a lot to be explored in a small area making it one of the best day hikes in the Canadian Rockies. Droves of people walk these easy paved pathways so start early and try to beat the crowds.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Jim says:

    Hopefully y’all can return to exploration mode soon.

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