Canada is a beautiful country with some of the most epic hiking trails heading through untouched backcountry. It is the second largest country in the world by landmass, with nearly 4 million square miles of land. Forests cover half of the land in Canada, which makes for some of the best backpacking in the world.
Backpacking in Canada is a bit different from Europe. Your party is often alone, the nearest road is where you left your car and there are no friendly mountain huts with hot food and cold drinks. Instead, you get untouched wilderness the way the wild places have been for thousands of years. Animals are abundant, views unspoiled and the tranquility extreme.
#1: LAKE O’HARA
Lake O’Hara is in the Yoho National Park in British Columbia and is not really a full-fledged backpack. This area has restricted access, with only guests to a historic mountain lodge and a backcountry campground getting transport by bus on an 11km road.
The reason for this limited access is the stunning beauty of the area. If you can get a reservation plan on 2-3 nights here minimum. This pristine sky blue Lake O’Hara lays in a valley surrounded by spruce trees and the jagged snow-capped mountain tops of the Canadian Rockies. There are many great options, such as heading up to Lake MacArthur or taking a 2-mile stroll around lake O’Hara. The highlight is the All Souls route and the stunning views as you explore the mountains around the lake.
#2: THE ROCKWALL TRAIL
The Rockwall Trail is a scenic trail in Kootenay National Park located in beautiful British Columbia. This trail extends 34 miles (one way) through the Canadian Rockies. This hike is the most beautiful section of Canada’s infamous Great Divide Trail. The highlight of this trail is the 18-mile section of nearly unbroken limestone that tops out at over 11,000 feet. Most people complete this hike in 3-5 days, depending on their experience and weather conditions. The trailheads for this hike are 8 miles apart, so once you exit the park you can hitchhike back to your car, or hike the 8 miles back. Be warned though, this is a tougher trail than it looks and is often hit by inclement weather. If you get good weather then this is an epic trip!