Distance- 9.04 miles
Time- 3:45 (this included our rest at the top)
Elevation gain – 530 m (1,750 ft)
Sunday was a typical lazy Sunday, I slept in until 9 am and sipped coffee all morning while reading a book. When Ryan announced that he was going to lay down and it was only noon, I had a decision to make. I knew Ryan was going to nap all afternoon so I could stay home and read and watch Netflix or head to Waterton. It was a tough decision because it was overcast and chilly and the clouds in the west looked dark and ominous but dammit I haven’t hiked enough so I sprang into action and was on the road 15 minutes later.
I had done a little research the week before on half day hikes in Waterton and decided to try the hikes off the Red Rock Parkway. I’ve done many of the ones off the Cameron Lake Road and I needed a change of scenery and boy did I ever get it!
To get to Goat Lake you start on the Snowshoe Trail at the Red Rock Canyon walking path, cross that pretty bridge over the canyon and head into the woods.
The first 4.5 km is an easy, flat walk. The trail is wide and perfect for mountain biking and the three peaks you walk toward are beautiful.
We came across a couple shallow stream crossings and it was crazy to see all the rock debris from the last couple years of flooding.
I enjoyed an easy walk but I knew that if the path was this flat that it would be a CLIMB to get to the Lake and boy was I right. The path to Goat Lake came up on the right and from the minute you stepped on the path you went up, up and up. It took me an hour to climb that 2.5 km!
I was a little nervous the first half of this climb because the trail was lined with raspberry bushes and it’s bear season right now. I would randomly whistle at Rocky or talk out loud to him to make noise. I’m sure the people we crossed on the trail thought I was crazy. I scared one lady because she saw black Rocky and thought he was a bear.
Halfway up you hit the alpine zone and walk on a path cut through the scree. The views are amazing and the path goes up, up and up. I was huffing and puffing, but having Rocky to pull me up helped a lot actually.
This is not a part hike for anyone with a fear of heights because off the narrow path, the terrain is very loose and it’s a long way down.
Just as we hit the top, it started to mist which was nice to cool off. We were now at the top of the big waterfall and it was a very short distance more before we hit the lake!
The view was gorgeous and Rocky and I enjoyed a much needed rest.
Heading down was sketchy because Rocky was, as always, pulling me. I would yell at him to walk and leaned back at practically a 45 degree angle. I was happy when we finally hit the flat Snowshoe Trail again.
On the way back I dawdled and enjoyed my surroundings. I felt like I was back in Washington with the damp and cool air and the low cloud cover.
I have rated this an advanced hike because of the distance, steep climb and the exposed walk over the scree.
I’m already trying to talk Ryan into doing the Snowshoe Loop this weekend!
Here are a few more photos from the hike:
4 thoughts on “Goat Lake Hike, Waterton”
Wow that looks amazing!!! I need to get to Waterton soon!
I love it so much and I keep discovering new trails and sights and places. It’s a magical place!