One of the best hikes in the world is
SUNSHINE TO Mt. ASSINIBOINE
Also known as:
The red dot is BANFF National Park.
A recommended heli-hike option shortens the trip.
WHY WE LIKE THIS HIKE
Visit the prettiest peak in the Rockies, Canada's Matterhorn 3618m (11,870ft). This is our favourite hike in the Canadian Rockies.
Extend this hike with awesome sidetrips and scrambles:
Mountaineers come to climb Assiniboine.
This route starts in Banff National Park and finishes in Mt. Assiniboine Provincial Park.
It is complicated because you could be dealing with 3 different management organizations:
Each has different sets of regulations.
Most importantly, BC Provincial Park campgrounds are first-come, first-served. But Banff National Park campgrounds must be reserved.
Check fees and booking - Banff National Park as early as possible to discuss what campgrounds you might want to reserve. (Most difficult to get is Howard Douglas.)
The biggest hassle with this hike is transport back from Mt. Shark to civilization. If stuck, you might be able to hitchhike. Far better is to arrange someone to pick you up.
If you chopper out, you can fly to Mt. Shark or all the way to Canmore on the Trans-Canada highway.
INDEPENDENT OR GUIDED?
Almost everyone hikes Assiniboine indepenently.
BEST TREKKING GUIDEBOOKS
There are many good hiking guidebooks. But we love Graeme Pole's innovative binder editions where we can remove just the relevant pages for our hike, carrying them in a protective plastic slipcover. Brilliant! Be sure to get the most recent edition.
The Copeland opinionated guide is excellent too, rating hikes from 1-4 "stars".
BEST TRAVEL GUIDEBOOKS
Compare the rest against Lonely Planet and Moon. Be sure to get the most recent edition.
You can probably use any guidebook to travel the Canadian Rockies. The tourist infrastructure is excellent.
OTHER RECOMMENDED BOOKS
Gadd is our bible in the Rockies: flowers, plants, animals, birds, fish, geology, history and much more.
BEST WEB PAGES
After this page, the best links are
BEST PHOTOS & TRIP REPORTS