It is a steep downhill for about 30 to forty minutes down to the lake. Stay on the trail going left at the bottom. Do not go right down to the lake itself. Proceed on the rough trail in the woods beside the flats to wherethe trail comes out onto the flats about fifteen minute past where you came down the hill to the lake. Make a diagonal path toward the narrows accross the flats stay on the left side of the narrows along a narrow path beside the creek on your right. At the other side of the narrows it opens up, you make a path toward the double falls until you arrive at the next narrows.
You will see a bridge about 200 yards up the creek. This is the first and last time you need to cross the creek until the trip back. Once accross the bridge head right towards the Moraine. The trail goes right up the Moraine to the top of the ridge. Watch for the trail branching just at the top. if you take the branch to the left you will end up at the Weather Station & back country Alpine Hut. If you take the trail branch that heads up and to the right you are on the trail to Caldron Lake. Just stay on the ridge trail until you reach the highest spot where lyou will see the narrow exposed trail that takes you over to the Caldron Lake side.
Follow the trail down about 200 yards or so loosing altitude until you reach the Lake. The Lake is not visible on the entire hike until you are about a 100 yards or so from it.
This is a fabulous Rocky Mountain hike with views all around the whole time. It is a steep climb both to and from the Lake but it is a superb view of the Rockies, Glacier Lakes and Glaciers the whole way.
NTS Map: 082N10
Elevation Gain: 685 m (2,247 ft) going in; 240 m (1,115 ft) coming out
This trail starts from the Peyto Lake lookout off the Icefield Parkway 4.9K North of Num-ti-jah Lodge. Park at the Peyto Lake lookout parking lot. Go up the lookout trail with the masses and view this beautiful lake. Go past the second lookout platform about 50 feet to the trailhead.
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Posted By: MartinevanMil
- Tue Oct 14 17:30:02 UTC 2014
QuestionHi! Does anyone know how the conditions on the trail are right now? Is it doable to cross the river or do you need really good gear for that?ANSWERS are in this forum: Hiking conditions
Posted By: BigLars
- Sat Aug 16 21:28:57 UTC 2014
CommentThis is a great hike. Feels remote (once you get past the zoo that is the trailhead), varied terrain, feels quite different from many peak-bagging hikes around the Rockies.
The bridge, as others have noted, is out. After setting out for the day, blissfully unaware of the problems the 'creek' would present to us, we spent about 2 hours trying to find a low-flow area along the braided stream below the moraine. We finally hiked back out to the braided flat outwash plain, directly below the viewpoint, and found some areas to cross. This involved walking through some waist-high areas, so make sure you have a pole or are otherwise proficient at river crossings. We then followed a faint trail along the rivers north side, after which we ended up hiking and scrambling our way up to the moraine (crossing Caldron Creek along the way). From then, it was a fairly straight-forward ascent, with one small bit of exposure above a steep chute on some very loose rock.
This hike obviously does not see a lot of use anymore after the bridge has been washed away, which probably adds to the allure of the hike for many (like us). The trail, in many places, is faint - and probably growing fainter as the years go by.
So, bring river sandles and some poles (or find your own piece of lumber) for the crossing, cross the river as soon as you can, and avoid the long arduous search of a safe crossing further upstream.
Posted By: da3thoms
- Mon Aug 20 03:53:19 UTC 2012
UpsideGreat views, nice hike with lots of up and down for variety. DownsideBridge out, need to cross streams. Avoided marbley moraine by going up valley to the right of it. CommentDid this today, Aug 19. Sign just past tourist lookout said the bridge was out and, yup, it was. Said it wouldn't be replaced. So we back tracked a km or so and crossed the streams. Obvious warning but: meltwater volume increases as the day goes on, so better to get out early to cross back early. We were 7 hrs return to a view of the glacier, with backtracking and crossings. Probably 8 or 9 to do the whole thing.
Posted By: ADesouza
- Wed Aug 01 06:56:15 UTC 2012
CommentAttempted to do this July 24/12. Definitely no chance of crossing the water without the bridge. We attempted to get across by navigating up and down the flats to find cross-able paths where the water wasn't rushing as fast. We were about 4 meters from the west side of the river to get up onto the ridge but could not find a way to cross the rushing water. Slightly disappointed at this, but we made the best of the day and continued up the flats toward the glacier. Beautiful waterfalls (beyond the large double falls) and an enjoyable trek, nonetheless. We figured that if we want to get to Cauldron now, we will need to find a way to cross to the west side of the flats early on. The book we were using for guided instructions told us to stay on the east side of the river until we got to the bridge. With the bridge washed out, we couldn't get to the other side. :(
Posted By: woiceshy
- Tue Aug 16 00:32:29 UTC 2011
CommentJust to let everyone know: we attempted this hike August 14, 2011. The BRIDGE at 5.4 km does NOT EXIST (has been washed out or removed). So we just hiked and scrambled to Peyto Glacier instead. It is possible to go to Caldron Lake from there but that would make it a very long day; 8-9 hours?
Posted By: Yohohiker
- Fri Mar 25 13:39:57 UTC 2011
UpsideThe views out by the weather station are wonderful. Almost no one goes there, so you don't have to listen to chatter when all you want to hear is the wind and your own thoughts. DownsideVery long hike. The spine of that moraine is one of the worst. Like hiking on marbles. Also, there is a cable attached to a boulder slab that you have to hold onto and navigate over rushing water just before the river crossing. Scarey but doable. CommentThe first sight of that glacier is one of those sit down and catch your breath moments. Makes all the time and sore muscles worth it. Start early so you can stay up there and poke around. It took us 9 hrs & 15 minutes, 10 miles total, 3,362 ft. elevation gain. We set out for Caldron Lake but when we reached the top of the moraine we realized we'd need all our strength (and time) just to get back down. Beautiful views in all directions. And probably beautiful views going down the moraine if you have the courage to lift your chin. Yes, it's that scarey.
You look at pictures later and forget the pain. Mine are the ones of the two people hiking in front of the glacier, Sasha crossing the bridge, and a view of our lunch spot with the weather station in the background.
Posted By: Engor
- Tue Jul 24 16:26:36 UTC 2007
UpsideOne of the most beautiful trails in the Rockies. View of Peyto Glacier and Cauldron Lake are astounding. DownsideNovice hikers as well as those who are afraid of hights may find it too intimidating. CommentAmazing that such beautiful trail is virtually unknown. We didn't meet any hikers there.