#5 best hike in the world is …

Sunshine to Assiniboine

This is our favourite hike in the Canadian Rockies. Mt. Assiniboine is Canada’s Matterhorn.

Mountaineers dream of climbing Assiniboine. But this is also a great hiking destination for kids and grandparents who can access the high alpine Assiniboine Lodge, Naiset cabins or wonderful Lake Magog campground via helicopter.

“Base camp” hiking doesn’t get any better than this:

  • Sunburst Valley / Nub loop sidetrip 6.7km (4.2mi)
  • Og Pass/ Windy Ridge sidetrip 8.7km (5.4mi)

Our recommended route for serious hikers is 56km (34.8mi). Bus from Banff, Alberta to the Sunshine Ski Resort. (This puts you almost on top of the Continental Divide to start.)

Wander lush Sunshine Meadows, winding your way towards beckoning Assiniboine.

Why we love it:

  • Assiniboine is remote, accessed only on foot or by helicopter
  • good chance to see mountain goats, bighorn sheep, elk and mule deer, pikas, chipmunks & hoary marmots
  • Sunshine Meadows is home to hordes of Columbian and mantled ground squirrels.
  • huge, heavenly alpine meadows
  • colourful wild flowers
  • walk the continental divide
  • Wonder Pass to Marvel Lake is superb
  • Assiniboine is only a few hours away from our #6 hike, North Circle in Glacier National Park


  • this is a very popular hike
  • budget for a series of fees — hiking is not cheap in Canadian National Parks
  • biting insects can be a nuisance at times
  • trails sometimes closed due to bear
  • you may be tempted to walk out from Assiniboine to Mt. Shark trailhead in a very long day
  • the weather is highly variable. It can snow any day of the year. Or it can be 30°C (86°F).Details on our Sunshine to Mt. Assiniboine information page.

    view of Assiniboine from the Lodge – Assiniboine Lodge Photo Gallery

4 Replies to “#5 best hike in the world is …”

  1. Sunshine is one of favorite areas! So many great hikes start from there. I’ve often gone up to Sunshine and then up to the summit of Quartz Hill just for the amazing views…
    “Summit Stones & Adventure Musings”

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