If you are looking to pass a few hours the Heart Creek Trail is a nice easy hike in the Valley. Easy for kids and dogs and a pretty special part of the valley when you start walking away from the highway.
Heart creek is pretty easy to get too. The car park is right of the 1a opposite Lac Des Arcs going East towards Calgary. It took us 10 minutes to drive there from three Sisters. There are two different hikes you can do, we chose the route to the waterfalls, but there is another rout going up to a cave which I hope to try out soon as well. The waterfall hick 5k in and out. Nice and easy for a Sunday afternoon.
We had attempted this walk a couple of weeks ago, but the day we chose was really windy and very busy for some reason. We initially went with all the dogs and thought we would let Rocket walk on his own.
The trail was really busy and our three dogs do not play well with others! It’s a very narrow trail to start, walking uphill towards the creek. When passing any other person with a dog our three had a complete melt down. Hard to control when you have three and a roaming toddler. We gave up and went home and agreed we would attempt it again sans-sausage!
This weekend we went and it was delightful. A much sunnier day, and far less stressful with just the three of us. This time we took Rocket in the back pack carrier and he loved it (to start) We have a pretty sturdy back pack carrier, But our Rocket is a big boy and I’m sad to say I think he might be out growing it. He used to love a snooze in it on longer walks, but as he grows taller there is not much for him to lean on to get a quick 40 winks. We went for a walk during what would be his nap time. He did not nap!! He enjoyed the way up, and then as kids do, as soon as we got to the furthest point away from the car, decided he was tired and hungry and just wanted to be carried in my arms. Which was fine! Good job I’m strong.
(Note to self – make the most of these moments, it won’t be long till I can’t carry him, or he wont want to be carried)
It’s a nice uphill walk from the car park, nothing too steep and through the trees. You do get some height quite quickly which is nice because you are very close to the highway and the noise of the traffic takes away from the beauty of where you are.
Once you get to the creek base you turn right and walk up between the mountains following the creek. It’s really beautiful up there and we were very lucky to go on a really quiet day. (annoyingly it would have been a great day to take the dogs up there but hey-ho)
Being mid-winter the walk was pretty icy so I would recommend cleats or at least shoes with great grip. We had to cross the creek at one point which was a complete ice sheet. Other then that the trails are compact snow and a few wooden bridges as you wind your way up the creek.
If you are hunting for some good winter hiking boots Henry got me a fantastic pair that are both fashionable and functional (not an easy find out here) They are from the brand Olang and they have hidden cleats in the sole that you can flick out for hiking or hide for walking around town. PERFECT!! We got them in Shoes T’boot on the high street in Canmore. A great little local spot for quality shoes and boots. A lot of Italian leather! You can check them out here…https://www.shoestboot.ca/
All in all the walk took us about an hour and a half with stops to take photos and tend to a winging toddler. Great little break to blow away to cobwebs and get hidden amongst the mountains.