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Best time to travel to Banff & Jasper National Parks

Hector Lake

A turquoise-colored lake just two hours away from Calgary


Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin
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This turquoise glacier lake offers fantastic views of the mountains. Hector Lake is a natural reservoir in western Alberta. It is surrounded by the Pulpit Peak, Mount Balfour, Crowfoot Mountain, and Bow Peak of the Canadian Rockies. The lake was named after a geologist James Hector. Mount Hector is towering over the lake on the opposite side of the Bow River. The lake covers the area of 5.23 sq km (2.02 sq mi).

Hector Lake Trail starts not far from the village of Lake Louise. It's a popular and short route of some 5 km (3 mi) that requires to cross the Bow River. The water in the river is freezing and can be high in spring and early summer. Therefore it's recommended to hike this trail from July through September. For the weather and trail updates, contact the Lake Louise visitor center. Visitors have to purchase a $9.80 Parks Canada pass to park in Banff National Park.

Most tourists drive past the trailhead that is located off the Icefields Parkway, so it’s usually not busy. You'll find the trailhead approximately 18 km (11 mi) north of the junction of the parkway and the Trans Canada Hwy close to the village of Lake Louise.

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