The Flowing Water Interpretive Trail is perfect for little feet. Our family tackled this hike early spring with our 2 and 4 year old. Both girls managed to hike the full distance without much of a challenge but if your worried about those little feet then bring along a carrier. This hike is great for all abilities but please note that there is a slight elevation and stairs. Enjoy the hike and have lots of fun!
Flowing Water Interpretive Trail
Distance and Elevation: 2.5 km or 1.5 km (Loop), 50 m
Facilities: Flush toilets in the campground where the trail head starts. Not open in the winter.
Hike Highlights: River; Mountain Views; Beaver Pond
Accessibility: Child Carrier Friendly
Just one hour from Calgary. From Highway 1 take the Highway 1X exit. After merging onto the Highway turn right into Willow Rock Campground. The trail starts in Willow Rock Campground.
There are two places to start the Flowing Water Interpretive Trail.
Option 1: There is a trail head near the bathrooms/showers at the end of the road across from the camp host. This trail is .5 km through the trees in the campground to get the main trailhead.
Option 2: Drive past the bathrooms and turn into the campground and there is a large sign indicating the trailhead. If you are staying at the campground then you could bike to the starting point and lock your bikes to the fence located at the entrance. at 51.08691°N 115.05851 ° W
This trail was the perfect for our 3 and 4 year old. Young 1-2 year olds may find it challenging so I suggest bringing a carrier.
Once at the trailhead stay right at the fork. Hike up high beside the Kananaskis River in the trees. After a short distance there is a set of stairs that takes you down to the River. Make sure that you do not let your kids play in the river as it is unsafe.
After enjoy a quick water break continue on the trail until the trees open up and the climb begins. The short climb takes you uphill until you you reach a short set of stairs. Climb the stairs and take break at the top bench. Enjoy the expansive views of river and mountains. This is a great spot to enjoy lunch or a longer snack break before heading down and finishing the loop.
Continue on the trail and make sure to look to the other side as there will be fantastic views of adjacent mountains including Mount Yamnuska. From there continue on the trail down back into the trees. The trail continues into the trees and passes Beaver Pond.
From there the trail turns into a boardwalk and a second opportunity to view Mount Yamnuska. Only a few more turns and the hike finishes at the main trailhead.