Stoney Squaw - Banff National Park - Hiking Alberta

 

Stoney Squaw is a mountain between Mount Norquay and Cascade Mountain in Banff.

 

 

Stoney Squaw is the name of the small mountain nestled between Mount Norquay and Cascade Mountain above the Town of Banff in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada.

On a twisting, turning, paved road that switchbacks its way up the side of Mount Norquay, there is a turnout at the big open patch with wonderful views of Mount Rundle, Tunnel Mountain, the Town of Banff, Sulphur Mountain, Vermilion Lakes and the Sundance Range.

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Mount Rundle with tiny Tunnel Mountain in front, above the Town of Banff in Banff National Park

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada View over Banff Townsite from Mount Norquay

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada View over Vermilion Lakes, Sulphur Mountain on left, Sundance Range on right

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Alternate view over Vermilion Lakes

 

The Stoney Squaw trail-head is at the top of the road at the near end of the large parking area for the Mount Norquay Ski Lodge.  The trail-head is marked with a kiosk and easy to find adjacent trail.

The hike proceeds over a short, pleasant trail that accompanied children can do, with a one way distance of 2.3 kilometers (1 ⅜ miles) over an elevation gain of 185 meters (610 feet)  to the highest point on Stoney Squaw at 1,880 meters (6,170 ft).

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Typical Stoney Squaw trail through forest

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Ewa on the Stoney Squaw trail

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Ewa at the Stoney Squaw 'Summit'

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada View north to Cascade Mountain from Stoney Squaw Lookout

 

This half day hike travels almost entirely through aromatic forest.  In cool shade there are intermittent carpets of lush moss which are easy underfoot.

Much of the trail is cushioned with pine needles. 

There are very few vistas through dense forest but the advantage is a peaceful walk in nature.  Periodically there are patches of rock outcroppings rich in fossil content and the hike continues down the other side of Stoney Squaw for another couple of kilometers before turning back.

 

Stoney Squaw Trail - Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Stoney Squaw trail continues down the other side of Stoney Squaw

 

On descent, the hike proceeds on an alternative route which leaves the forest at the ski area for a short walk through the parking area to the car for the short drive down the twisting switchbacks for rest and relaxation in the Town of Banff.

The Mount Norquay road often hosts mountain sheep and goats so it is always best to be prepared for a surprise. 

Originally, massive Cascade Mountain was named Stoney Chief.  Stoney Squaw refers to a Stoney Indian woman standing next to the Stoney Chief. 

One name was changed; the other was not.  The name is used as it stands with complete respect, and with no intent whatsoever of having it interpreted as derogatory.

 

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