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This Glacial Lake Is Only Reachable by a 6-Mile Hiking Trail

by Matador Creators Jul 18, 2023

Located in the picturesque Kootenay National Park in British Columbia, Canada, Floe Lake is a glacial lake surrounded by towering cliffs and magnificent glaciers. You can only reach it via a 6 mile hike, but that’s partly what makes the lake so special.

The adventure begins with a scenic drive through the heart of Kootenay National Park. As you traverse Highway 93, keep an eye out for diverse wildlife such as elk, black bears, and bighorn sheep along the way. After about a 3-hour drive from Calgary or a 45-minute drive from Radium Hot Springs, you’ll reach the well-marked Floe Lake Trailhead parking lot. Be sure to arrive early, especially during peak season, as parking spaces can fill up quickly.

Embarking on the Floe Lake Trail, hikers are treated to a challenging yet rewarding 6.6 mile one-way trek with an elevation gain of 2,346 feet. The trail meanders through dense forests, meadows, and rocky terrain, with the occasional stream crossing to keep things interesting. While the hike typically takes four to six hours to complete, it’s essential to come prepared with proper hiking gear, clothing, food, and water, as well as checking weather and trail conditions before setting off.

As you crest the final hill and lay eyes on Floe Lake for the first time, the feeling of accomplishment and awe is unparalleled. The turquoise waters, fed by melting glaciers, are surrounded by rock walls that create a natural amphitheater. It’s the perfect place to take a break, enjoy a picnic, and capture stunning photos of the landscape.

For those wishing to extend their stay and fully immerse themselves in the beauty of Floe Lake, a backcountry campground offers 18 sites near the lake’s shores. Reservations are required and can be made through the Parks Canada Reservation System. Spending a night under the stars with the gentle lapping of the lake’s waters is an experience you’ll never forget.

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