Call us biased, but Alberta is one of Canada’s most beautiful provinces in the fall. The mountains are practically covered with golden larch trees, wildflowers and wildlife and we (usually) have some of the freshest air a pair of lungs could ask for.  But what’s the best way to enjoy such a magical season? By immersing yourself in it, of course! Stretch those calves, here are 10 of Alberta’s most beautiful fall hikes.

Larch Valley and Sentinel Pass Trail

This should come as a no-brainer. The stunning larch trees on this trail are already hitting their gorgeous golden state which means a hike out here should be at the top of your list. It’s a challenging trek (like a lot of ones on this list) but trust us when we say that the views are worth the sweat.

Where: 622 Moraine Lake Rd, Field, AB
Distance: 10.9 km
Difficulty: Hard

Pocaterra Ridge

This heavily trafficked trail is another one that’s practically lined with larch trees. The hike itself is pretty challenging, but it’s totally rewarding – if you can stay on the path! For this one, we’d recommend having your phone handy as it is a bit tough to navigate, but don’t let this scare you away! The view is outstanding.

Where: Pocaterra Ridge Parking Lot, Kananaskis, AB
Distance: 11.4 km
Difficulty: Hard

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Chester Lake Trail


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Furry friends at the ready! This backwoods hike will take you around and above beautiful Chester Lake and it’s super dog friendly. From the colours to the easy-to-follow trail, this one has become a fall favourite among nature lovers – both inexperienced and professional.

Where: Kananaskis, AB – See directions here
Distance: 9.3 km
Difficulty: Moderate

Buller Pass

Buller Pass kind of has everything, trees, dogs, and cascading waterfalls – but man is she something else in the Autumn. Despite its difficulty, this hike is totally worth it for that all over warm and fuzzy feeling you can only get from the sight of Alberta larch trees in the fall.

Where: Kananaskis, AB – See directions here
Distance: 20.4 km
Difficulty: Hard

Wood Bison Trail

You’ll find this hike in the Heart of Elk Island National Park. Although this trail can actually be taken at any time of the year, its far superior in the fall. Seriously, ask anyone who’s checked it out in the Autumn and they’ll probably tell you the exact same thing. It’s breathtaking.

Where: Elk Island National Park – See directions here
Distance: 15.9 km
Difficulty: Moderate

Crypt Lake

This hike is practically perfect for the fall loving adrenaline junky – and that’s not only because it comes packaged in a spooky name. This hike may be challenging but the views are outstanding, overlooking large trees and the Waterton Reservoir this bad boy will take you through caves, by waterfalls and ends with an incredible view of the entire national park – colourful trees and all.

Where: Waterton National Park – See directions here
Distance: 20.4 km
Difficulty: Hard

Arnica Lake

Those who like to listen, look, and appreciate nature will love this trail. Not only is it crazy pretty in the fall, but it’s also not overly difficult for experienced hikers. It does get a bit steep throughout but it’s nothing you won’t be able to handle if you know what you’re doing. If you don’t, well… prepare yourselves!

Where: Field, AB – See directions here
Distance: 9.2 km
Difficulty: Moderate

Red Rock Canyon

Red Rock Canyon is something extra special. Not only is this a super family-friendly hike with waterfalls, trees, and wildlife, it also is quite literally, a canyon of red rocks. If colour and contrast are what you’re after, this is most definitely the hike for you.

Where: Waterton Park, AB – See directions here
Distance: 0.6 km
Difficulty: Easy

Sunshine Meadows

So Larch Valley is crazy busy and you’re not ready to hike single file through the mountains – don’t worry, we’ve got you. Sunshine Meadows is just as breathtakingly beautiful. With yellow and orange larch trees as far as the eye can see, you’ll probably never see Alberta Autumn, quite the same way.

Where: #1 Sunshine Access Road, Banff
Distance: 7.6 km
Difficulty: Easy to moderate

Healy Pass

Looking for an all-day fall hike-stravaganza? Stretch those legs, because Healy Pass isn’t your regular there-and-back trail. Pack some snacks, lace up those boots, and remember to breathe. This one is freaking lengthy, but the view of Banff’s golden larch trees, wildflowers, and far off lakes are worth it. A day well travelled is a job well done.

Where: Sunshine Rd, Edgewater, AB
Distance: 18.3 km
Difficulty: Difficult

There you have it, folks. Some of Alberta’s most beautiful fall hikes. Remember to hydrate before hitting the road and to hike safely! Don’t feed the bears and watch your feet! You never know what will be scurrying across those trails.