Kananaskis Lakes Travel Guide

  • Kananaskis Lakes
    by Hermanater
  • Wild flowers on trail to Chester Lake
    Wild flowers on trail to Chester Lake
    by Hermanater
  • Chester Lake
    Chester Lake
    by Hermanater

Kananaskis Lakes Highlights

  • Pro
    Hermanater profile photo

    Hermanater says…

     Incredible hiking 

  • Con
    Hermanater profile photo

    Hermanater says…

     Too many people. 

  • In a nutshell
    Hermanater profile photo

    Hermanater says…

     Home away from home 

Kananaskis Lakes Things to Do

  • Nakiska ski resort

    Quite a good place to start your skiing life as it has a good range of runs for people of every skill, many of which are novice to intermediate.One of the green trails (novice) has a somewhat nerve racking section on a path only a couple of metres wide, with hill and drop on either side, and little room to manoeuvre the skis to slow down, but over...

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  • Lower Kananaskis Falls

    There is a 16 km loop aound the upper Kananaskis Lake. We took the southern part of the loop to the falls. The temperature was only 4 degrees and looked like snow, but we wanted to get out. When we got there, there was a strong wind and lots of clouds. The trail has a few small hills but overall no real elevation gain or loss. We went 9 km total...

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  • Troll Falls

    There is a short trail from the Nakiska Ski Hill area that takes you to the Falls. This is a nice short trip for the whole family. You can actually stand under the falls. During the summer, this becomes quite popular and crowded.Use caution because the rocks are very slippery......

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Kananaskis Lakes Hotels

Kananaskis Lakes Restaurants

  • A cozy and intimate atmosphere

    Located in the Executive Resort at Kananaskis, the Wildflower Restaurant is a great place to relax in a cozy and intimate atmosphere. You can enjoy a menu specializing in creative Canadian cuisine where only the freshest ingredients have been selected. We started off with two appetizers...the Flash Sautéed Calamari (on fresh tomato bruscetta with...

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  • Pristine beauty and genuine Alberta...

    Located in Alberta's Kananaskis Country, the Kananaskis Resort & Conference Centre provides its guests with spectacular views, delicious cuisine and more than enough opportunities to use a camera.We picked this place because of it being near Bow Valley Provincial Park (where the wedding took place) and the beauty of getting married in the...

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  • Memories Restaurant

    This restaurant in Longview is a local favorite and hang out of the stars when they are filming in the area. You can also catch some colorful characters here. As we were having our dinner, we were quite entertained by a drunken cowboy who was having a discussion with his dining companion about how his favorite boneless steak was a T-bone. The food...

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Kananaskis Lakes Nightlife

  • Parks Presentations

    Some of the more established campgrounds have simple outdoor ampitheatres. In the evenings, the parks staff put on skits to educate the public about wildlife and environmental issues in Kananaskis. They are geared towards families and can be corny but entertaining. One presentation we saw was "Catman", which was about cougar and lynx.

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  • Great Nightlife!

    Woody's Pub is a great spot for nightlife. There is a lot of young people in Kananaskis Village working at the resorts and the ski hills. Have fun!!!!!!!! No dress code.

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  • Woody's Pub

    Woody's Pub is the only "nightlife" here, unless you just want to create your own around the campfire. Pretty good pub food, and they bring in live bands on the weekend. come as you are

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Kananaskis Lakes Transportation

  • madamx's Profile Photo
    A nice touring vehicle

    by madamx Written Feb 7, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The only way to get around Kananaskis is by guided tour or car. You could also thumb it, but to tell you the truth, I have seen very few hitch hikers in Kananaskis.

    Highway 40 is very well paved and maintained, and most areas are very accessible, so all you need is a regular car.

    If you need to rent a car, you will have to get it from Calgary.

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Kananaskis Lakes Shopping

  • Fortress Junction

    This place is located by the road sign on the highway that says "No Further Gas Stations" or something like that. This is a gas station/general store/ice cream stand that is located near the turn off to Fortress Mountain Ski Resort. You can find all sorts of stuff here; carries everything from ice cream to bacon to fishing lures to those...

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  • Bragg Creek

    The qauint hamlet of Bragg Creek, northeast of the Kananaskis border, is a traditional weekend browsing/shopping destination for many Calgarians. The shops here sell mainly local crafts and art, as many artisans call Bragg Creek their home. On the main stretch is a mall with quite a few shops there, plus restaurants and a supermarket. Most of the...

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  • Kananaskis Village

    The Village is comprised of two hotels, a tiny shopping centre, and employee's residences. There is a small store in the centre courtyard that sells mainly snacks and drinks. The shopping centre is located in the Delta Lodge at Kananaskis, and comprises of perhaps 5 or 6 stores. They sell mostly clothing (which can be handy if you forgot a jacket...

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Kananaskis Lakes Local Customs

  • Camping

    Every weekend in the summer, hundreds of people flock to Kananaskis to go camping. The Victoria Day Long Weekend (around the 3rd week in May) is the traditional "opener" for camping. Even though most of the time people freeze to death or get snowed on, they still go. I think the May long weekend in 2003, was nice though, but this is pretty rare.The...

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  • Picnics

    I would say the majority of people heading into Kananskis are looking for a scenic drive and a picnic or camping. Picnic areas are located all over the park called "Day Use Areas". The most popular and pretty locations are Barrier Lake and Upper Kananaskis Lake. Especially on a beautiful summer weekend, go early to stake out your table, I would say...

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  • Kananaskis Lakes Hotels

    1 Hotels in Kananaskis Lakes

    398 Reviews and Opinions

Kananaskis Lakes Warnings and Dangers

  • Don't feed the animals!!!

    Wildlife is abundant in the area, you will see them while hiking or driving along the road. They may look gentle and docile, but they are not. This is their environment, so respect their home and be aware of your surroundings. I've been to the park numerous time over the past 2 years and have seen grizzly bears upclose and personal (as seen in this...

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  • Theft

    Even though you feel you are out in the middle of the wilderness, be very careful to take your valuables with you, or leave them where you are staying. Kananaskis is not immune to crime; thieves love it when you leave your car for hours on a picnic or a hike. It gives them plenty of time to break in, and make their getaway!

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  • Whiskey Jacks

    Stop anywhere in Kananaskis and pull out some food. Wait about 5-10 minutes. These birds will come out of nowhere, hoping for a snack.Also known as the Grey Jay, these you-can't-help-but-love-'em birds get the name Whiskey Jack from the Cree "wiskatjon". These birds are scavengers and feed off of fresh kills of large animals. They also scavenge...

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Kananaskis Lakes Tourist Traps

  • madamx's Profile Photo

    by madamx Updated Feb 3, 2004

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Along Highway 40, there is a little cheesy wishing well, on the east side of the highway. I am not sure how far along Highway 40 it is, but you can't miss it as it looks weirdly out of place, and there are usually 2 or 3 cars parked beside it. It is built on a pretty little cascading stream, and I am told the water there tastes great. However, I wouldn't recommend drinking water so close to the road, and you shouldn't be drinking water from a stream anyways.

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Kananaskis Lakes What to Pack

  • Layer, Layer, Layer

    Weather in Kananaskis can change quickly, and it can snow in the middle of summer at high altitudes. Dress in layers so you can peel them off as you get warmer. Even summer mornings and evenings can be quite cool.When hiking, I find it handy to always have a windproof/water resistant jacket (great for sitting on wet ground as well), a fleece...

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  • Prepare for the weather!

    If you are traveling with pets then you should bring lots of water as the hikes can be very strenous and don't forget the leashes. Hiking boots, rain gear, socks, extra set of clothes, ball cap and sunglasses to name a few. First aid kit and insect repllent are a must. A simple camera will do, but bring extra film as you will need it. Towel for...

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Kananaskis Lakes Off The Beaten Path

  • Rawson Lake

    Rawson Lake is in Peter Lougheed Park. Access to trailis from parking lot at Upper Kananaskis Lake. Trail is short around 3.5 Km, but lots of switchbacks. Check out the web site listed fo rup to date trail conditions/bear or cougar warnings/closures in K-Country. K-Country is best for hiking and mountain biking, enjoying wildlife and camping. But...

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  • Tombstone Lakes

    Tombstone Lakes are located in some of the most beautiful Kananaskis Country imagineable. After a fantasy-like walk through a valley shouldered by mountains and through fields of nodding wild asters, valerian and buttercups, you arrive at an emerald green jewel, which is Lower Tombstone Lake. Most likely you will be totally alone, and the silence...

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  • Rawson Lake June 2006

    Here are some pics of Rawson Lake June 1 2006. I would like to get a few pics from July, Aug and Sept, as the lake & scenery changes breifly for the summer. There was no snow at Upper Kananaskis Lake on this trip but the snow was waist deep on the shores of Rawson.

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Kananaskis Lakes Sports & Outdoors

  • Cross Country Skiing

    Already popular, cross-country skiing is even more so, as costs of lift tickets are increasing as well as gas. A day trip to a popular ski area such as Lake Louise can easily cost $100.There are many groomed cross-country trails in Kananaskis, as well as an opportunity for some spectacular backcountry skiing. Of course, if you decide to do...

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  • Fishing

    Fishing is excellent in Kananaskis. Most of the lakes are stocked, and the types of fish available are: trout, char, arctic grayling, and whitefish. Fishing licenses can be purchased at Fortress Junction in Kananaskis, and in Calgary. With your license you should receive fishing regulations -- they will specify when you can fish, what size you can...

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  • Hiking

    Fir Creek Point (moderate) ~ 7km return. Make sure you turn often, admiring the view, as you follow an old pack trail that climbs steadily to a grassy pass. Take an animal trail to an amazing viewpoint, set amongst picturesque limber pines. Go in early to mid July; at that time there will be wildflowers everywhere. You may run into an organized...

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Kananaskis Lakes Favorites

  • Bow Valley Provincial Park

    This park is part of Kananaskis, but sometimes gets looked over for the beautiful scenery south to it. The most striking thing about the park is the fortress-like Mt. Yamnuska (as it is commonly known as; it's proper name is Mt. Laurie), which you can see to your right if going west on the Trans-Canada. When heading west on the Trans-Canada, the...

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  • Highway 40

    If you don't have that much time to spend in Kananaskis, at least take a drive down Highway 40, which is one of the main access roads. It starts at the Trans-Canada, then makes it's way south to Highwood House, then east to Longview.You can drive a loop starting at the Trans-Canada, southeast to Longview, then north again, going through the...

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  • Elbow Falls

    This is a favorite destination for picnickers and families -- it's a scenic area with various waterfalls and whirlpools (young children must be supervised). There is a paved walking path for strolling with interpretive signs explaining the formation of the falls.Go south on Highway 1, then turn off on Highway 22. Follow the highway through to Bragg...

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