David Thompson Highway aka Highway 11 goes from Nevis, Alberta to Banff National Park East which connects to Highway 93. Really, the area I (and most people) talk about when referring to is between Rocky Mountain House, and Highway 93.

This central Alberta stretch of road goes through some of the most stunning country in the province. What you see from the highway is just an appetizer for the incredible beauty awaits. This is also one of my favourite drives from Calgary via Rocky Mountain House, and back around down 93rd via Lake Louise, and Banff. You can do it in a whole day or split it into two. Enjoy it for longer if you camp.

The geography of the area includes canyons, and stunning mountains the combination of the two also means waterfalls! By level of difficulty, here are my favourite waterfalls you should visit:

Crescent Falls

This is a rather iconic waterfall in Alberta, and in the Nordegg area. You would recognize it in pictures but won’t know exactly where it is. It’s here, and the good news is that Crescent Falls are super easy to get to for everyone.

The Crescent Falls turnoff from David Thompson Highway is between Cline River, and Nordegg. It’s about a 5km gravel road with pot holes that will make your car disappear but eventually it goes down into the canyon where there is a good amount of parking. You can walk to a few view points of the falls, and also walk around the ledge right down to them. Just be careful going down as it’s a very steep, slippery hill. This is an area that a good number of people get hurt every year so just be logical, and stay away from the edges.

Allstones Creek Trail

For those seeking a little more adventure, and doing pretty safe canyoning this a fun little hike. If you don’t mind getting wet. I discovered this hike by accident when I thought just going down into the canyon to see what’s in there.

You will be going down into the canyon, following the creek which eventually leads to a good size waterfall. The trail consists of walking in the creek, and navigating different natural obstacles around as you progress into the canyon. Make sure you Google, and save an offline map for the trail location. It’s hard to describe, and there won’t be reception close by. It it’s the canyon right by the popular Allstones Lake Trail.

Siffleur Falls

This could be a fairly easy hike or a substantial one that will take you a good part of a day, if you take your time. This is a great area to spend the day at with many fun spots by the river. To get to the main waterfall in the picture below is about a 4km hike that can be described as a nature walk. Technically this is the first waterfall out of three. You can keep going another 4km through the woods, the ledge of the canyon to a couple more waterfalls. It’s ok if you don’t, though. This point is the main attraction of the Siffleur Falls hike.

Just after the main waterfalls, and the lookout point there is a section of the river you can hang out at, and a little farther is a pretty cool boulder area to spend time at as well. The parking area is not far from highway 93, and Banff National Park East. It’s a large staging area but fills up quick. This is a beautiful area to explore as it’s a natural reserve, and will spoil bird lovers.


All of the above hikes are dog friendly as well. You can even do all three in one day if you start early. Enjoy, and be safe!


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