Canmore, half-way between Calgary and Banff, is an outdoor recreation mecca, popular for mountain biking, bouldering, peak bagging, skiing and of course running & trail running. It’s a good spot to visit in itself, or to break up the drive with a run.
There’s an extensive series of trails on both the east and west sides of the bow valley, with easier multi-use trails and also some opportunities for hills and more challenging trail running. This trail map has good information on the different options. Some recommendations:
Three Sisters Pathway. A scenic 6.7 km (4.2 mile) route follows the Bow River downstream to Three Sisters Mountain Village, with great river and mountain views. From Minside Trailhead, the first 1.7 km is gravel and the remaining 5 km are paved. Good add-on: The Bow River Loop Trail is a 2 km loop and can be accessed from the Minnside trailhead of the Three Sisters Pathway.
Rocky Mountain Legacy Trail. Paved multi-use path that follows the Bow River for 23 km between Canmore and Banff. aGreat views of the valley and surrounding mountains. Official trailhead is located at the Travel Alberta Visitor Information Centre.
Highline Trail. More for challenging trail running. Great views.
- Three Sisters Pathway: 6.7 km (4.2 miles) one-way; Rocky Mountain Legacy Trail: up to 23 km to Banff
- Three Sisters/Bow Valley: Minside Trailhead; Legacy Trail: Visitor Center
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