Albertawow

Nigel Pass Hike

  Ratings:    Ratings 5 Star
Level: Moderate Time/Dist: 4 to 5 hours / 14.5K return Elevation Gain: 365m

 

Trailhead: Nigel Pass is located near the Columbia Icefields, 108kms south of Jasper and approximately 109kms north of Lake Louise. Park at the Nigel Creek parking lot located approximately 15kms east of the Athabasca Glacier Ice Fields visitor centre. Jasper National Park.

Description: Follow the old Banff - Jasper gravel road past an outfitters corral until you reach the wardens station. Stay left of the Wardens station on a well worn trail that leads down to Nigel Creek. Cross two wooden planked bridges over Nigel Creek then follow the right hand trail a short distance up towards old Camp Parker. Camp Parker was used by early natives and the first explorers to this area. The tree carvings found here date back to and before 1940, when the original Banff-Jasper highway was built. Unfortunately the tree carvings have been defaced by others. I found it interesting to place my hand on this tree and imagine those who had done the same long ago. Maybe Samson Beaver and Mary Schaffer did the same thing. From camp Parker, follow the trail leading north towards Nigel Pass as it slowly climbs through an old Engelmann spruce forest. Nigel creek cascades over several short outcrops as you pass by. Once you enter the meadows you can see the Nigel Pass headwall directly in front of you. Hike the last 2.5kms up the headwall to the top of the pass. The trail then drops down the other side towards Brazeau Lake and the Brazeau River valley. For better views hike up to the viewpoint on your left below Nigel Peak. This is a great spot to have your lunch. Views looking back towards the meadows, Parker Ridge, Mount Saskatchewan, and forward towards the Brazeau Valley are spectacular. The slopes with slabs of rock to the northeast should be avoided. We witnessed a rock slide here (pictures below) while eating our lunch. It looks like rock slides are a frequent occurrence near the pass and one should not linger about while crossing. Nigel Pass is a popular backcountry destination. Expect to see horse outfitters with larger parties on this route.

Near Here: Local campgrounds include Camp Parker Back Country (pictures below), Wilcox Creek, Icefields Centre Parking Lot, Columbia Icefields Tents Only. There are several hikes located in this area. Parker Ridge, Hilda Ridge, Hilda Glacier, Boundary Lake, Boundary Peak, Weeping Wall, Wilcox Pass, Mount Athabasca Alpine Climb, Mount Athabasca North Glacier, Castleguard Mountain Alpine Climb and the Saskatchewan Glacier. You are in bear country.

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Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek  
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
  Old Banff - Jasper Highway
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Outfitters Corral  
   
 
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
  Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940 Tree Carvings Dating Back Before 1940
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Camp Parker and Tree Carvings Camp Parker and Tree Carvings
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
  Hilda Peak
   
 
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Meadows Mount Nigel
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Nigel Creek
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Creek Mount Nigel
   
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Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Parkers Ridge and Mount Saskatchewan Meadows
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Pass Nigel Pass
   
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Nigel Pass Towards Brazeau Valley Nigel Pass
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Outfitters on Nigel Pass Nigel Pass
   
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Nigel Pass Towards Brazeau Valley Nigel Pass
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Pass and Nigel Mountain Nigel Pass
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Pass Looking East Nigel Pass Towards Brazeau Valley
   
Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park Nigel Pass Hike Jasper National Park
Nigel Pass Rock Slide Nigel Pass Rock Slide
   
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