There are few things more essential to a Canadian winter than venturing out for a skate on a frozen pond or lake. Feeling the cool air breeze by and hearing the blades cutting the natural ice is damn near therapeutic. The only thing we like better than a normal outdoor rink is a natural outdoor rink, and Alberta is packed full of mountain skating spots that are to die for.

Remember, skating on frozen lakes and ponds isn’t always the safest thing to do. So be sure to check ahead of time to see if these have been opened for the season and are safe for skating.

Here are 10 gorgeous mountain skating spots in Alberta you should check out!

Two Jack Lake

two jack lake mountain skating curiocity

This one is an old standard. Located in Banff National Park (like a lot of spots on this list), Two Jack is famous for crisp ice and breathtaking views. Head on over on a clear day and you might just see tree stumps down at the bottom of the lake!

Where: See directions here
Distance: 130 km to Calgary, 416 km to Edmonton

Lake Minnewanka

 

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Lake Minnewanka is northeast of the town of Banff, so grab some beers in town and head on over! You’ll find wide-open spaces and mountain views that look Photoshopped. Heads up though, the reservoir’s size and depth means it usually doesn’t freeze over until well into mid-winter!

Where: See directions here
Distance: 129.5 km to Calgary, 406 km to Edmonton

Lake Louise

rocky mountain adventures

Two enormous skating rinks? Check. A gorgeous Fairmont for apres-skate cocktails? Check. Sleigh rides, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and skiing? Obviously! Lake Louise is iconic, so if you’re okay with a less secluded adventure then definitely head here for endless winter fun.

Where: 111 Lake Louise Dr, Lake Louise, AB
Distance: 185 km to Calgary, 474 km to Edmonton

Vermilion Lakes

vermillion lakes mountain skating alberta
This spot is one in Vermilion! We’re sorry for that dad joke, but we’re not sorry for telling you to skate here. The shallow lakes freeze very early on in winter, so bring a shovel and clear a patch for your Blades of Glory moment!

Where: See directions here 
Distance: 128 km to Calgary, 415 km to Edmonton

Johnson Lake

Too hipster for Minnewanka? Take a little detour off the road loop to hit up this ice skating paradise. It’s got mountain views from all angles, so definitely don’t forget your camera!

Where: See directions here
Distance: 130 km to Calgary, 416 km to Edmonton

Gap Lake

Chillin’ in Canmore? Head east on Highway 1A to check out Gap Lake! It’s only a 10-minute drive from the town, and the mesmerizing frozen bubbles in the ice are totally worth it. Oh, and don’t forget your twig– since this pond is bigger than your average, there’s high chances of puck happening here.

Where: Gap Lake, Bighorn No. 8, AB
Distance: 95.8 km to Calgary, 382 km to Edmonton

Moraine Lake

mountain skating alberta

Moraine Lake isn’t always a good skating spot, mainly because the road to it usually closes before the ice is fully frozen. However, if you’re down to bike or hike in, be our guest! Though it’s half the size of Lake Louise, its spot in the Valley Of The Ten Peaks might make it even prettier.

Where: See directions here
Distance: 197 km to Calgary, 483 km to Edmonton

Mildred Lake

Lake Mildred is Jasper’s equivalent of Banff’s Lake Louise. Surrounding the Fairmont Hotel, this unreal rink has an Instagram worthy backdrop and even skate rentals for those who may have packed light for their Staycation, or are just out and about for a spontaneous afternoon.

Where: 1 Old Lodge RoadJasper, AB
Distance: 420 km to Calgary, 363 km to Edmonton

Pyramid Lake

With a picnic shelter, a hotel a matter of minutes away, and a scenic backdrop, the skating rink on Pyramid Lake has all the makings for a perfect winter day outdoors. Also, the area offers great snowshoeing and even magical sleigh rides – just in case you need a break from your skates!

Where: See directions here 
Distance:417 km to Calgary, 369 km to Edmonton

Abraham Lake

abraham lake mountain skating alberta

Abraham Lake is by far one of the most unique skating rinks in all of Alberta. Known for the orb-like appearance, this winter destination is an absolute must-visit for outdoorsy folk, photography enthusiasts, and adventure seekers alike.

Where: See directions here
Distance:308 km from Calgary, 339 km from Edmonton

So get out there, folks! Your winter won’t be complete without a visit to one of these gorgeous Alberta skating spots. Enjoy yourselves!