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Buller Pass Hike


  • Buller Pass



  • May 27, 2023



  • Ed, Craig, Oak, Rod



  • the trail starts at the Buller Mountain Day Use Area which is 30 km from Canmore on the Spray Lakes Road
  • park on the entrance road to the day use area which is on the right (west) hand side of the road
  • the trailhead is straight across the road on the east side



Degree of difficulty:

  • 700 meters of elevation gain
  • 15 km distance to the pass and back
  • the trail is relatively easy to follow although you have to be careful where it intersects the High Rockies trail in two spots near the beginning
  • 4 km up the valley (just across the fourth bridge), you take the fork to the right to get to Buller Pass
  • the climb to the pass is steep but only takes 20 minutes
  • we encountered some snow patches in the upper valley that we had to navigate around and, in some cases, trudge through
  • because of this navigation, we ended up traversing across some loose scree and sharp boulders that cut us up a bit
  • the hike took us four and a half hours



Interesting notes:

  • on the drive along Spray Lakes Road, we saw the most beautiful tan-colored bear
  • partway up the forested valley, there are several unique trees that have multiple trunks (still a mystery to me how they are formed)
  • the wildflowers added some nice color to certain sections of the hike
  • as well there are several burnt areas throughout the hike that offer a cool stark contrast to the forested areas
  • there were several downed trees across the trail that were a bit tricky to navigate around or over
  • around the 4 km mark, there is a beautiful waterfall in Buller Creek that is worth stopping to enjoy for a few minutes (we contemplated a plunge, but it was too cold)
  • there are a few other waterfalls on this trail that are also quite impressive
  • in the meadow, before the ascent to the first pass, there was a huge area where bears had dug up the ground looking for ground squirrels
  • the views are tremendous once you break out of the forested area with Buller Mountain to the north and east and Mt. Engadine to the south
  • at the pass, you look across the valley to Mt. Kidd and Guinn Pass, down to Ribbon Lake and Mt. Bogart off to the left (north)