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Lake of the Hanging Glacier Recreation Trail - # 14

Trailhead Access

Access to the Lake of the Hanging Glacier trailhead is via the Horsethief Creek Forest Service Road.  From Wilmer, drive north along the Westside Road for 16.4 kms to its junction with the Horsethief FS Road.  From Radium, at the Hwy 93/95 junction, drive west past the sawmill.  Trailhead parking is at roadís end at the km 50 mark.  Overnight camping is available at the Stockdale Creek FS Recreation Site at km 39.

Lake of the Hanging Glacier

Trail Description

The Lake of the Hanging Glacier is the most popular trail in the District.  The first portion of the trail follows an old roadway for two kilometres.  The trail then narrows and ascends before crossing a footbridge over Hell Roaring Creek.  ( Note: this footbridge is installed for the months of July through September only.  Crossing when the creek is not bridged may be treacherous.)  A second bridged crossing takes you over Horsethief Creek and then through mature forest gaining elevation over 13 moderate switchbacks.  Detouring above a small slough, the trail continues a gradual climb to alpine meadows.  Open camping and a toilet are available here.  The lake and trailís end are a further 800 metres through open meadows.  The sharp glacier tongue is some 2.5 kms from the north shore.  A spectacular panorama of rugged peaks encircle the lake. 

Access to the vicinity of the glacier is possible along the east shore over rocky terrain with no trails.  Do not attempt to travel on glaciers without experience and proper equipment.  Please do not camp or light fires along the lakeshore.  Horse use is not recommended. 

Trail Details

Trail Length

Elevation Gain

Travel Time
(one way)



2.5 to 3 hours




Moderate day hike or overnight at lake.

Trailhead and trail end campsite.

10 vehicles.

Access type



2WD car.  Gravel road with some rough spots from km 44 to 50

Use gas stove in the sub- alpine.

Yes.  From District office and area Visitor Info Centres.

Topo Map

1:50,000 scale - Duncan Lake 82K7
Can be purchased at Government Agents office in Invermere.


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