Walking & Hiking

Hinton's Multi-Purpose Trails

Hinton's local trails are spectacular and provide lovely corridors throughout the community. Explore Hardisty Creek, Happy Creek, Thompson Lake, Maxwell Lake, and many other trails around the area. The trails are designed for walking and cycling, and can be used for cross-country skiing when snow conditions permit.

Trails are for non-motorized use only. Pick up Hinton's Multipurpose Trail Map from the Tourist Information Centre or the Dr. Duncan Murray Recreation Centre. The following are some of Hinton's many recreational trails:

Athabasca Nordic Centre Trails & Luge Facility

The Athabasca Lookout offers the adventurous a stunning view of the Rockies, and the Athabasca Nordic Centre has a variety of world-class trails to ski, bike, or hike. The cross-country ski trails are 10 meters wide and range in distance from 1.4 to 25 kilometres in length. There is also a 1.5 kilometre lighted trail that provides wonderful skiing in the dark winter evenings. The rustic day-use chalet is large enough to accommodate groups up to 50.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton, and go 2 kilometres to Highway 40 North. Travel 18 kilometres until you see a sign for the Nordic Centre. Follow the road to the parking lot on the right hand side. 
Athabasca Ranch Trails
Highlights of Athabasca Ranch Trails are scenic views of the Athabasca River and open grassy meadows. This is a great trail for biking, hiking, or a relaxing picnic. The trail loops range from 1 kilometre to up to 10 kilometres.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton, and go 2 kilometres to Highway 40 North. Travel 3 kilometres, turn at the Hinton / Entrance Airport Road, then fork right past the Initial Attack Helicopter Base. Park off the road.
Beaver Boardwalk
Located at Maxwell Lake, the Beaver Boardwalk highlights the local wetland system and showcases the area's beaver habitat. There's always a chance to spot a beaver working or swimming. This is must-see for the entire family!
  • Location (PDF): The trail starts beside Maxwell Lake Apartments on Collinge Road. It is also connected to existing town trails that go behind Maxwell Lake.
Bighorn Trail
The Bighorn Trail is one of the original pack trails in our area. The Bighorn Trail runs through the beautiful forested foothills of the Rockies. It is approximately 22 kilometres 1 way, and a person should allow 8 hours to hike 1 way. The Bighorn Trail is ideal for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding.
  • Location: The trail starts just outside of Hinton Town limits. Pick up a map from the Hinton Tourist Information Centre to locate the trailhead.
Brule Mine
At Brule Mine, there is an old mining shaft, old railway, and mining equipment. In the 1940s, Brule was quite a large, bustling mining community that boasted a race track, golf course, community hall, school, hotel, apartment complex, tennis courts, a large number of houses, and much more. Brule still has some of these items, but is now small in comparison.
  • Location: Park at Brule Community Hall, go left, and follow the old road behind the community hall. There will be a path going left into the old mining area.
Cache Percotte Forest Trails
The Cache Percotte Forest trails are excellent for mountain biking, horseback riding, and hiking. Each trail is about 1.5 kilometres in length and varies from fairly flat to loopy and steep. It is about 20 minutes a trail.
  • Location: From the Hinton Tourist Information Centre proceed east 0.2 kilometres to a sign that reads "Hinton Valley District All Services." Turn right at the traffic lights and follow Switzer Drive to second set of traffic lights. Turn right onto Robb Road. Follow the road to a Cache Percotte sign on left side of road. Trail heads are all along that road.

Canyon Creek Trail

The trail is a 3 kilometre loop trail and unfolds into magnificent canyon scenery. Please be aware that you will be traveling on active logging and oilfield roads.
  • Location: Follow Switzer Drive to East River Road, turn left onto the Willow Road and over the Athabasca Bridge. Go 5 kilometres and turn right at the Emerson Creek Road. Follow the Emerson Creek Road, to a yellow kilometer 18 sign. Parking is on the right hand side at trail head.

Emerson Lakes

Emerson Lakes offers 7.8 kilometres of walking and biking trails. It is located northeast of Hinton in Sundance Provincial Park. Please be aware that you will be traveling on active logging and oilfield roads.
  • Location: Follow Switzer Drive to the Valley District, turn left onto the Willow Creek Road turnoff. Drive 5 kilometres and turn right at the Emerson Creek Road. Take a right. Follow Emerson Creek Road signs until you get to Emerson Lakes, approximately kilometre 59.
Folding Mountain Trail
The Folding Mountain Trail is a historic route to Miette Hot Springs. The trail was used by the residents of a coal mining community from Luscar. The distance of this trail is 25 kilometres, approximately an 8-hour hike 1-way. The hike is a tough 1, so bring water because it is not always readily available.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton and travel 25 kilometres until you come to Folding Mountain Resort. Park and walk back to the turn-off. Follow the left ditch toward Jasper for 5 minutes until you pass a telephone pole, where you will see a cutting through the trees marking the trail.

Gregg Lake Campground/ Day Use hiking and biking trails

Gregg Lake has 3 trail options: 
  • Kettle Trail
  • Greg Lake Trail
  • Fish Lakes Trail 

Kettle Trail
3.5 km interpretive loop
Walk on an esker, view a kettle lake and see the evidence of thousands of years of geological activity. The trailhead starts behind the Gregg Lake campground shower building and parking lot.

Gregg Lake Trail  
3.5 km loop
Hike or bike this hilly 2.5 km trail through mixed forest from the Gregg Lake Day Use area to the upper Gregg  Lake campground and amphitheatre area, and return on the 1 km trail connecting F-loop to the lake shore.

Fish Lakes Trail  

3.5 km connector trail
For a taste of backcountry hiking, the Fish Lakes Trail connects Blue Lake trails to the Kettle trail. The trail follows ridges through rolling hills and thick spruce forests with viewpoints along the way. 

Hinton Training Centre Trail
The Hinton Training Centre has a 1.5 kilometre interpretive trail, along with a museum. The centre provides a brochure that will highlight different kinds of trees, the Ranger Station, and other items of interest along the trail. Inquire within the Hinton Training Centre for more information.
  • Location: From the Hinton Tourist Information Centre, proceed east 0.2 kilometres to Switzer Drive. Follow this to the Hinton Training Centre. At the centre, pick up a brochure outlining the trail.
Jarvis Lake Trails
Jarvis Lake's 2 trails are named Rolling Run and Meadow Run and are both suitable for novice skiers, bikers, or hikers. Along the trail are various wildflowers, a viewing platform, and wildlife.
  • Location: Jarvis trails go to Kelley's Bathtub. To get there, take Highway 16 west of Hinton 2 kilometres to Highway 40 North at the 20 kilometres sign. Both trails begin at the end of the parking lot.
Natural Resources Interpretive Park
The park showcases natural resource management at its best. Experience self-guided interpretive trails, a fire lookout tower, giant mine truck, adventure playground, and picnic area.
  • Location: The park is located on the north side of Highway 16 at the west end of Hinton, directly behind McDonald's Restaurant.
Ogre Canyon
Ogre Canyon is tucked into a small sliver of land between the first range of the Rockies and Brule Lake. The canyon is a deeply carved cleft in the mountainside. At the base of the canyon are many sinkholes. These sinkholes are created by underground streams and a remaining active stream that dried up or changed direction. Vegetation has changed the topography of the land. Ogre Canyon is a very beautiful and unique area to explore. Four-wheel drive vehicles are highly recommended.
  • Location: Follow Highway 16 west from Hinton for 2 kilometres to Highway 40 North. Go 5 kilometres to the Brule left turnoff (watch for sign stating Brule), and travel 14 kilometres to Brule. Go straight through on Main Street, traveling through the horse lease in order to reach the parking area. Road conditions vary with weather conditions. Please leave gates as found.
Overlander Trails
The trails range from 2 kilometres to 20 kilometres. The trails offer views of Kinky and Wildhorse Lake, Brule Range, and Folding Mountain.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton and go 25 kilometres to Overlander Lodge. The trail starts near the community hall in a clearing, which was originally an old sawmill site.
Pine Management Trail
The Pine Management hiking trail is 6 kilometres long and can be walked in about 2 and a half hours. It shows mature pine, regeneration of forestry after a forest-fire, management trails, and regeneration after logging.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton and go 1.5 kilometres to Highway 40 South. Travel approximately 20 kilometres and turn left on a dirt road before you reach Gregg River. Travel about 8 kilometres and watch for a left turn (with a cabin on a the corner) on to Gregg River Road. The trail begins behind the cabin.
Wildhorse Lake Trails
The Wildhorse Lake is an excellent spot for camping. It is surrounded by many small lakes and a few trails. To reach the other lakes just follow the trails. Wildhorse and Kinky lakes are supplied with fish and offer excellent fishing.
  • Location: Take Highway 16 west of Hinton and go 20 kilometres until you see a sign for Wildhorse Lake Trails. Park by the dock. From there you will see a water pump - the trail is on your right.

Wild Sculpture Trail

Along the trail you will observe incredible sandstone formations naturally sculptured by the wind. Certain parts of the trail offer a spectacular skyline view of the Sundance Valley. From here you will have a clear view of the blue lakes below. Along the trail there are many fresh water springs. The length of the trail 1-way is 9 kilometres. Please be aware that you will be traveling on active logging and oilfield roads.
  • Location: Follow Switzer Drive to the Valley District, turn left onto the Willow Creek Road turnoff. Drive 5 kilometres and turn right at the Emerson Creek Road. Take a right. Follow Emerson Creek Road signs until you get to Emerson Lakes Campground, approximately kilometre 59 on the yellow signs.  Continue for 8 kilometres past Emerson Creek Campground and you will come to a parking lot. There should be a sign stating Wild Sculpture Hiking Trail. At the entry of the trail there is a small booth, which should have information about the trail.