Formed over thousands of years with the erosion of its limestone walls by the passage of the Johnston Creek, Johnston Canyon is located on the Bow Valley Parkway, halfway between Banff and Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada.
An extremely popular hiking trail, it also boasts seven spectacular waterfalls, natural tunnels, emerald-green pools and wildlife.
The first part of the hiking trail has a constructed steel walkway, complete with safety rails and bridges and is partly paved, making it suitable for wheelchair users. 1.1 km (0.68 mi) from the head of the trail, the visitor arrives at the Lower Falls, a 20 m (65.6 ft) high cascade with a viewing platform immediately below the waterfall. This is the most popular section and has heavy foot traffic, even midweek.
From here, the trail becomes more natural and presents more of a challenge to the hiker.
This part of the trail is not paved. 2.7 km (1.6 mi) in from the head of the trail, is the Upper Falls, with its cascade of 40 m (131.2 ft). A viewing platform above the waterfall provides a spectacular if acrophobia-inducing view. Here can be seen bighorn sheep and mountain goats. In the winter, the waterfalls freeze over and provide a popular activity for ice-climbers.
The trail comes out at a meadow within the Johnston Valley above the canyon. Here can be found the Ink-Pots, a group of six blue-green natural springs.
At the foot of the canyon, close to the creek mouth, there is a tourist lodge and large car park.