Sunrise over Vermillion Lakes, Banff, Alberta, Canada
Spahat Falls, BC, Canada.
Vermilion Lakes, Alberta, Canada.
Moraine Lake, Alberta, Canada.
Enderby Cliffs Provincial Park
Time:4- 6 hours total
Distance: 6.5 km (one way)
Difficulty to Summit: Medium
The hike begins as a leisurely stroll up a gentle grade slope to the forest, alongside what I believe is someone’s driveway. Then you enter the forest, and the gentle slope continues. If you go early in the morning as we did, bring bug repellant. It quickly becomes steeper. I was told my Nike Free walking shoes would be sufficient for this hike - they were not. Wear sturdy hikers for this one.
Once you come out of the trees, you are met with a nice view of the cliffs. Watch for birds of prey being swept upwards in updrafts. We took our dog and kept her on the leash the whole time, and would recommend anyone else do the same.
After eating lunch at the first stop where we could view the cliffs, we went on to the summit, where I (J) am pictured. After a brief rest, we continued on to Reeves Lake. This is where I really wished I had worn my hikers. Getting down to Reeves lake was slippery because of loose rock, and very steep. Once down, you are met with a small view through the thick forest and skunk cabbage. There was an old fire pit - I think it is commonly accessed by ATVs. (Sorry for the photo of Reeves Lake - I wasn’t inspired enough to take my camera out of my bag, it’s an iPhone photo :) ) Then you have a steep climb back up, but I don’t recall much scrambling (sorry it was this past summer, and I can’t remember.)
I don’t think I’d bother going back to Reeves Lake, but I’d definitely hike up Enderby Cliffs again. Our total hike ended up being around 20 km that day, and unfortunately my hiking season was cut short, because my feet was destroyed by this hike in my walking shoes :P
If you decide to go the extra distance to Reeves Lake, bring lots of extra water. It is much more strenuous than the hike up to the summit, and beware loose rock - it tends to chase you down the hill and bash into your ankles ;)
The hike to Enderby Cliffs is a pleasant one that I believe people of almost all ages could complete, if they are not normally sedentary. It is definitely worth it! The view is beautiful.
Icefields Parkway, Alberta, Canada.
Moraine Lake just after sunrise in July, 2013.