Quarry Lake is a popular recreational oasis above Canmore, Alberta, Canada.
The small lake is commonly accessed on the hike from Mineside parking, near the Bow River in town, on an uphill route past historic Coal Mine # 1, or directly into the unsigned parking area from Spray Lakes Road. Following hikes at the dam along Rundle Canal, and the Riders of Rohan Trail with a return via Grassi Lakes, easy access via Spray Lakes Road seems sensible. On this hot and humid August weekend day, the parking lot is jammed with many vehicles parked in overflow along the access spur off Spray Lakes Road above Canmore. A recently-vacated, ideal parking space is fortuitously captured beside the trail access for Quarry Lake Park and the Highline Trail.
The strategy, to avoid the throngs of people, involves hiking above Quarry Lake, on the grassy trail border for dogs on leashes, to the far end of the small lake where crowds will be thinner, then back along the far side while gathering a few representative photos of this idyllic and popular recreational gem.
Sensible zoning for dog access areas at Quarry Lake in the Bow Valley above Canmore, Alberta, Canada. No dogs are allowed within the red zone along the lakes perimeter for sanitary and potential conflict reasons.
The Quarry Lake perimeter is very busy with lots of happy people enjoying barbecues, picnics, games, sunbathing and water recreation. Paddle boarding is becoming increasingly popular. The tiny lake, with groomed aprons, is an outstanding recreational facility. There are a lot of dogs within the restricted area. On quieter days, people come here to fish in the stocked pond.
The focal point of Quarry Lake Park is the sandy beach close to the entrance. It is busy on this hot, sunny day with swimmers of all ages and young children playing in the sand with their beach toys.
The path from Quarry Lake Park to the parking area provides outstanding vistas to surrounding mountains as well as access to the off-leash dog park.
From 'Kananaskis Country Trail Guide, 4th Edition, Volume 3': Quarry Lake began it's existence as a strip mine for coal above Canmore Mine # 1 near Canmore Creek and Canmore Falls. When the quarry was reclaimed it was reduced from a depth of 120 feet to 80 feet and plugged with clay to create a fishing pond. From these humble beginnings Quarry Lake Park continues to be developed for residents of, and visitors to, the Canmore area.