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Ribbon Falls Hike


  • Ribbon Falls



  • August 7, 2021



  • Ed, Dave, Craig, Geoff, Lynn, Bailey, Rod, Bauer, Tomonori, Oak, Bryce



  • from the Trans Canada heading west towards Canmore, take Highway 40 south for 25 km
  • take the right-hand turn for Nakiska Mountain Resort, take the first left at Centennial Drive, and  then a quick right onto Ribbon Creek Road
  • the trail starts out of the far end of the parking area at the sign that says Ribbon Creek Trail



Degree of difficulty:

  • 650 meters of elevation gain, but it doesn’t feel like this much elevation as it’s very gradual over the whole distance
  • 20 km out and back
  • at 3.7 km, there is a fork in the road near a unique stump where you want to go left (right leads across a bridge and up a steep hike to Memorial Lakes)
  • the falls is just past the Ribbon Creek campground
  • the hike took us 4.5 hours



Interesting notes:

  • you can go beyond the falls up to Ribbon Lake, which adds 3 km return and 250 meters of elevation along with a tricky climb up a chain link
  • there are numerous beautiful small waterfalls along the trail, and Ribbon Creek runs along most of the trail, providing constant picturesque views
  • the area is surrounded by Mount Kidd and Mount Bogart
  • the naming of these two mountains is that Fred Kidd operated the Scott and Leeson Trading Post and served as the Justice of the Peace. Part of his job was outfitting survey parties that worked in the Kananaskis Valley area. One of these was led by a geologist, D. Bogart Dowling, who chose Kidd’s name for the mountain
  • Donaldson Bogart Dowling (1858-1925) was a geologist who joined the Geological Survey of Canada in 1885 and worked for it until his death. He was a director of the GSC and one of the first scientists to study the Rockies. He reported not only on the geology but the geography, flora, fauna, and native history as he explored what was then, in a scientific sense, an unknown area
  • the parking lot was once the site of a logging and coal mining town called Kovach
  • this trail is quite popular given that it leaves from the Kananaskis Village area
  • you can ride your bike for the first 5.7 km until you hit the unmaintained part of the trail, which makes for a pleasant descent on the way out
  • the trail beyond Ribbon Lake provides access to Buller Pass to the east and Guinn’s Pass to the west