Backpacking


View all backpacking programs

Backpacking Basics Lectures

Learn how to prepare for backpacking in the Rockies. Topics include how to select gear such as packs, tents, sleeping bags, and clothing, how to plan backcountry meals and menus and how to set up camp.

Intro to Lightweight Backpacking

Learn the skills needed to go backpacking with a pack weighing less than 25 pounds. Aimed at backpackers who have the basics down, this lecture explores the packing, clothing, cooking, and sleep systems that enable you to go faster and lighter safely.

Intro To Backpacking: Elbow Pass

Try backpacking this year!

Have you every wanted to try backpacking, but felt intimidated by all there is to know? Thought about trying it out, but not comfortable on your own?
This trip is designed to teach first-time or new backpackers the skills to enjoy backpacking as a summer activity.

At the Backpacking Basics lecture, you'll learn about the equipment and skills you need. Then, on an easy overnight trip in Kananaskis, you'll have the chance to put it all together and practice with an experienced guide.

All trips include: introductory lecture, permits, camping fees, guide, group camping gear, and a 10% discount on gear rentals. (backpacks, sleeping bags and other camping gear can be rented through the Outdoor Centre.)

Local Backpacking Trips

Enjoy a backpacking weekend in the Rockies!

Visit different areas and practice no-trace camping, wildlife safety, trip planning and route selection. A pre-trip lecture covers food planning, packing tips, trip logistics, and car pools.

All trips include: permits, camping fees, guide, group camping gear*, and a 10% discount on gear rentals (backpacks, sleeping bags and other camping gear can be rented through the Outdoor Centre).

*We will be staying in 2- and 3-person MSR tents and cook shared meals on liquid fuel stoves.

This year's destinations:
Lake Minnewanka is the perfect early-spring destination to kick off your season.  
For newer backpackers, our Taylor Lake weekend is the perfect second backpacking trip, as we camp in the same place both nights, with a day hike in between to explore the area and take a rest from the big pack.  
Ready to explore the parks this summer? Or 4-day Bow Valley Highline and Skoki trips visit two different parts of Banff, each with a fabulous collection of passes, lakes, and broad views.  
If you don't have a lot of time but want to go farther, sign up for our August Molar Passes loop to cover 54km over three days and loop a pair of spectacular high passes.  
And if it's your first time, don't forget to start out with our Intro to Backpacking trip to get you prepared for the rest of the programs!  

Multi-Day Hiking: Yoho

Want to visit other areas, but not interested in carrying everything on your back? Our new Multi-Day Hiking trips are for you!
We travel to an interesting area, then do a series of day hikes, while relaxing in front-country comfort at night.

This year, visit Yoho National Park and spend 3 days exploring its trails on your choice of L2 or L5 trips.

Backpacking & Fishing Weekend: Lillian Lake

Join us for a backpacking trip to a fantastic fly-fishing destination. We'll hike up Galatea Creek, set up camp at Lillian Lake, and then spend the afternoon fishing the alpine Galatea Lakes for cutthroat trout. 
If we're lucky, we'll catch some dinner and learn how to prepare our catch to eat.