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2 to 3 hours / 6K return

Elevation Gain



Trailhead: Park at the Elbow Pass parking lot on highway #40 just south of the Upper Kananaskis Lakes turn off. 170 kms west of Calgary. Note: Highway #40 is closed at the Upper Lakes and Highwood House Junction from Dec 1st to June 14th for wildlife preservation.


Description: Locate the trailhead behind the Elbow Pass day use parking lot. Continue on a gravel road as it steeply climbs towards Elbow Lake. The lake is a popular hike or bike during the summer months and a favorite for outfitters that offer backcountry horseback excursions.

Expect little to no solitude. Once you arrive at the lake you’ll be amazed at it’s stunning emerald green color and clarity. The backcountry campsite is located on the southwest shore next to the main trail. Elbow Lake is the headwaters for the city of Calgary’s drinking water.

Elbow Lake holds Cutthroat and Brook Trout. You’ll need a fishing license to try your luck Check regulations for closures. Ice is off Late June to early July.

Elbow Lake Loop PDF

Items Reviewed - 1

Mark Townsend

The lake is fed by an underground stream. It’s so clear you can see fish swimming.

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