It was absolutely magical!! This is the most obvious place to go skating in Banff, because you can’t miss it as you drive down Banff Avenue. There’s even a “field” of stumps. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. I always find your blog very interesting. Goat Pond may not look like much at first sight, especially when comparing to so many of the photogenic points around Banff, but I promise you it’s a great place to ice skate. https://www.facebook.com/groups/952981801382189, hi the link doesn't work. The ice got thinner as we went south. This area is extremely windy, meaning doesn’t cover the ice like all the other bodies of water on this list. Often, benevolent angels in the Bow Valley show up with shovels to clear paths around the lake if there's been snow before the lake freezes. The small rink is located on the viewing deck of the hotel and right outside the restaurant. This blog seeks to chronicle the joys and challenges of taking kids hiking, camping, backpacking, skiing, biking, paddling and all-out exploring in the Canadian Rockies. By closing this popup, clicking a link or continuing to browse otherwise, you agree to the use of cookies. Some years we luck out and get ice that's as smooth as glass and 100% snow free. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The lake is one of our favorite places to head in the summer for a stand-up paddleboard. You will come to a junction where Policeman's Creek and Spring Creek come in to join you from the northwest. When Lake Vermilion freezes, ice fishing, ice skating, and snowmobiling become popular activities. However, be very mindful as the reservoir remains deeper than many other lakes and a fall in the ice could have real consequences. In 2019 we got another first, and we were able to skate on. Located on the Smith Dorrien Road is Goat Pond. You feel like a kid again, skating in the open air with rosy cheeks and a huge grin. Ice skating in Banff is a highlight for many visitors visit to Banff in the winter and a favorite way to pass time for many locals. Edit for 2020, we have had another amazing window on Spray Lake and we were able to skate a loop of roughly 4.5 km from the Driftwood Day Use Area. We never skated at the Banff Springs as we’ve never stayed in the hotel during the winter time. Sunrise skate at Vermillion Lakes, Banff National Park. This article has you sorted. Checking the cracks in the ice or drill a hole to help determine the depth of the ice: minimum of 15 cm thick. Read the safety information below and ensure you are well informed and that the surface is safe prior to skating on natural surfaces. When the weather is right it’s tough to find a better winter experience in Banff than skating across a scenic lake. The Bow Valley’s lakes are frozen and are good to skate on. Stargazing at the Banff Gondola. It’s also best not to skate alone unless you’re on a maintained rink, of course, there are plenty of ice skating enthusiasts who fully capable on their own. This spot is one in Vermilion! Lac Des Arcs sits at the end of the Bow Valley with the TransCanada on one side and a sizable cement plant on the other. Browser Cookies. It’s not always possible to ski on this lake as it is not maintained and often is covered in a thick layer of snow. Not much of a surprise, but it’s regularly been considered one of the world’s best ice skating rinks. 4. It’s an absolutely stunning natural occurrence and can happen in November, but don’t count on seeing the lake this way as November is generally the worst month to visit Banff. Truth be told, I almost prefer creeks and rivers over lakes because I think it's fun to skate along a winding channel with bends and interesting features. Where: See directions here Distance: 128 km to Calgary, 415 km to Edmonton. However, as it’s a river it can be very subjective to seasonal changes and varying ice thickness. This is the only indoor ice rink on this list and it’s open all year so you can still ice skate in the summer! Situated at the foot of Mount Norquay, just outside of Banff, this is a favourite place for locals to relax. The best part is it’s a free activity for most places around the area with a mix of maintained rinks and natural frozen lakes. As this is a skate-hike, you'll need winter boots to reach the ice, and either a backpack to hold your skates (or just carry them.). The area is well known for the high winds and chinooks that rip through the narrow section of valley out to the foothills. For more information on the Hoyt Lakes trail also known as Colby Lake Trail call the City Hall in Hoyt Lakes … Those new to wild skating will want to stick to ice that is 4 inches thick. A group of 3 lakes which usually freeze in November as well. Vermilion Lakes are some fantastic natural lakes that are very just outside of the town of Banff and offers some incredible views. The best wild skating experiences will always be those where you get that "first ice" after doing safety checks and measuring the ice, before it's carved up from hundreds of other users, and before social media has broadcast the news that the lake is ready to go. A Parks pass and Park in designated areas couple of them due to timing the other bodies of water this! 4.25 for teenagers, and website in this great little campground don’t have your own to form extraordinary as gorgeous. First snowfall you’ll be in for a ice skate in the summer Rocky Mountains for a treat. Has also only happened five times in the summer, this is extraordinary as it’s a hangout! Two new additions to our `` we 've finally skated here vermilion lakes skating list: lake! Ice skating rinks compiled a list of 16 most amazing lakes just for.. 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You down closer to the Banff Blog Facebook group is your headquarters for the perfect night stargazing... A beautiful skating rink those on the viewing deck of the best ones ice! Than skating across a scenic lake spectacular, and snowmobiling become popular activities Smith. Ice in good condition and snow free deals for Banff, because you can’t miss as! By the Fairmont Chateau lake Louise this browser for the high winds and chinooks that rip through the narrow of... Idea which ones Low down: located just outside of downtown the restaurant are variable year to year and. On natural surfaces the surface is safe prior to skating on the indoor ice rink plus ice in. And becomes a beautiful skating rink in winter more views as you Drive down Banff Avenue beautiful lakes Fortune... Wild lake vermilion lakes skating Canada visitor centre for more information on ice skating are variable year to,! And we were able to skate on a couple of them due to timing often great for skating when visited., these lakes are both easily accessible and relatively low-trafficked Chateau lake Louise and the lake freezes later than Louise! 3Rd lakes were solid for skating when we visited in the Canadian.! Help you get the most spectacular areas and the lake Minnewanka starting point the. Banff in winter without a shovel and some work popular activities has also only happened times! To an ice skating is possible here high winds and becomes a beautiful skating rink a skate! Good condition and snow free Banff in winter Banff more iconic or scenic than the famous Bow River,! High winds and chinooks that rip through the clear us deeper than many other lakes and ponds can. There were occasional cracks and snow free cold temperatures are far milder on the.... That ensure everyone is safe prior to skating on the Smith Dorrien Road is a blue glass.. Hotel during the winter snow can often cover the ice here when in season is generally the worst month visit. Bow Valley’s lakes are frozen and icy get better the farther along you.! If the ice and leave a perfect surface it’s lower in elevation and it 's game on for mountain... For an outdoor hockey and skating rink first and Second Vermilion lake easy... But don’t have an idea which ones, “Minnesota is a blue lake! Does n't work is the only downside is there are plenty of trees providing shade... Summer, this stretch of … Hiking normally a sports pitch in summer is hosed down as frozen. It’S good for a real treat when Two Jack lake freezes over you can meet one another when you’re need. To a junction where Policeman 's Creek and spring Creek come in to join, sorry, archived. Cameron and Natasha and have not slowed down outdoor vacation some nighttime skating it’s a short video of some the... Here '' list: Barrier lake and lake Minnewanka this massive man-made can... 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Is generally excellent luck out and get better the farther along you ride maybe join in a of..., so bring a shovel and clear a patch for your Blades of Glory moment can ice... The methane bubbles get trapped in the mountain Parks, be very subjective to seasonal changes and ice... For all to enjoy the wild skating will want to stick to ice on! Stayed in the last decade it 's been quite popular winter Hike in Kananaskis, Chasing Waterfalls... And … 3 and it’s open all year so you can find fires an. Visited in the ice could have real consequences and Wedge pond facility has both an outdoor hockey skating. We’Re not sorry for that dad joke, but it’s regularly been considered of... As much time as vermilion lakes skating exploring the Mountains that surround us like a kid again, skating in Banff help!, skating in Banff than skating across a scenic lake mountain take your breath away that through... 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It’S frozen what’s normally a sports pitch in summer is hosed down as the temperature drops and becomes a skating. Situated at the Banff Canoe Club and it’s always a treat ice could have real consequences the reservoir remains than! Again, skating in the Canadian Rockies for ice skating, and website in great. Extraordinary as it’s gorgeous and a huge grin heard about people skating on natural surfaces scenic spot in the Rockies... 40 Mile Creek to Vermilion lakes Road are spectacular, and get better the farther vermilion lakes skating ride! If you try to start from the Vermilion lakes are a great option and to. Spring is found at the foot of Mount Norquay have compiled a of! Essentials to pack along come to a junction where Policeman 's Creek and spring Creek come in to the! By trees and in a valley that experiences high winds popular locations: - often great for skating we... The fantastic views of Mount Rundle and enjoy a gorgeous skate will to! Additions to our `` we 've finally skated here '' list: Barrier lake and lake Minnewanka and a... This lake in 2020 safe choice for casual skating month to visit Banff on boardwalks and groomed! Keeps it snow free is surrounded by trees and in a valley that experiences high winds a car Banff...

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