Jasper National Park : Maligne Canyon
Rocky Mountains - Alberta, Canada
Maligne Canyon is situated in a deep river gorge surrounded by eroded limestone cliffs measuring over 50 metres high. The highlight of the canyon attraction is the tumbling waterfall, wilderness scenery, the underground streams and the surrounding limestone jagged cliffs.
There are many options to access Maligne Canyon based on your ambition and fitness levels. The most active option is via the 3.7 kilometre one-way hiking trail starting from the Sixth Bridge parking lot. There is a day use picnic area with picnic tables located near the Sixth Bridge trailhead entrance.
Along the hiking route you cross over six bridges - each with unique views of the surrounding forest, cliffs and Maligne River. To enhance the hiking experience there are also a few sightseeing benches and a series of interpretive signs located along the trail detailing the geological history of the canyon.
To shorten the hike you can also access the hiking route from the Fifth Bridge. And to avoid the hike all together (not recommended) you can drive directly to the canyon and quickly access the canyon lookout.
Maligne Canyon is a popular destination which attracts large crowds during the peak summer months. The best time to visit and to avoid the crowds is during the morning hours and late afternoons.
For a different experience why not plan a trip in the winter season to Maligne Canyon because it is during the winter months, the river freezes over and tours are provided walking on top of the frozen river leading to the deep canyon gorge.
How to Get to Maligne Canyon
From the town of Jasper, Alberta, Canada it is 12 kilometres to Maligne Lake. From Main Street (Connaught Drive) in the community of Jasper, Alberta, travel east on Connaught Drive, crossing over the railway tracks before merging with Highway #16. Just ahead on Highway #16, on your right, is the exit road to Maligne Lake and Canyon. Take the exit, cross over a bridge, and then take a left and travel 2 kilometres to the Sixth Bridge parking lot.