Jasper Overview

Jasper National Park, nestled in the heart of the Canadian Rockies in Alberta, Canada, is a vast wilderness area that epitomizes the rugged beauty and grandeur of this iconic mountain range. Established in 1907, it spans an impressive area of approximately 11,000 square kilometers (about 4,247 square miles), making it the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies. Jasper is part of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks, recognized for its outstanding natural landscapes, diverse ecosystems, and the significant geological processes it showcases.

The park’s landscape is a stunning mosaic of towering mountains, crystal-clear lakes, thundering waterfalls, and expansive ice fields and glaciers, including the Columbia Icefield, one of the largest non-polar ice fields in the world. Jasper’s rugged terrain offers a sanctuary for a wide array of wildlife, such as elk, grizzly and black bears, caribou, wolves, and mountain goats, making it a prime destination for wildlife viewing.

Jasper National Park is renowned for its accessibility to outdoor recreation and adventure. With over 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) of hiking trails, visitors can explore the park’s natural wonders up close, from serene valley walks to challenging alpine treks. The park is also a favorite among photographers, particularly for its dark sky preserve, which offers some of the best stargazing opportunities in the world.

The park’s scenic drives, including the Icefields Parkway, which stretches from Jasper to Lake Louise, offer breathtaking vistas at every turn. Along the way, attractions such as the Athabasca Glacier, Maligne Lake, and the Miette Hot Springs provide opportunities for exploration and relaxation.

Jasper National Park is not just a haven for nature enthusiasts; it’s a place where visitors can immerse themselves in the serene beauty of the Canadian wilderness, find adventure in its vast landscapes, and reconnect with the natural world.

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Jasper National Park Highlights


Jasper National Park, a vast wilderness in the Canadian Rockies, is a stronghold for predator species, showcasing the raw beauty and complexity of nature through its array of apex and mesopredators that play a critical role in maintaining the ecological balance of this majestic landscape.

Grizzly Bear – A symbol of the wilderness, Grizzly Bears are seen throughout Jasper, commanding respect for their power and playing a vital role in the ecosystem as apex predators.

Black Bear – More common than grizzlies, Black Bears are adaptable foragers, often spotted by visitors as they browse for berries and insects in the park’s forests.

Wolf – Elusive and social, Wolves roam Jasper’s expansive territories in packs, their presence a key indicator of the health of the park’s wildlife populations.

Coyote – Versatile and cunning, Coyotes thrive in various habitats within the park, from open valleys to dense forests, where they hunt small mammals and birds.

Cougar – The secretive Cougar prowls Jasper’s wilderness, a solitary and powerful predator that preys on deer, elk, and other animals, rarely seen by visitors.

Wolverine – Fierce and solitary, Wolverines are one of the park’s most formidable predators, known for their strength and ability to survive in harsh conditions.

Bald Eagle – Majestic in flight, Bald Eagles are often seen soaring above Jasper’s rivers and lakes, hunting for fish and small mammals with their keen eyesight.

Golden Eagle – The powerful Golden Eagle is admired for its hunting prowess, patrolling the park’s skies in search of hares, marmots, and birds.

Great Horned Owl – Dominating the night, the Great Horned Owl is an efficient predator in Jasper, using its silent flight and keen hearing to catch rodents and birds.

Lynx – The elusive Lynx, with its distinctive ear tufts and large paws, specializes in hunting snowshoe hares in the park’s snowy landscapes.

Jasper National Park’s predator species, from the stealthy Lynx to the commanding Grizzly Bear, offer glimpses into the dynamic interactions and survival strategies within one of Canada’s most breathtaking natural environments.


Jasper National Park, celebrated for its stunning landscapes and rich biodiversity, is home to an array of wildlife species that thrive in its forests, mountains, and waterways, contributing to the park’s status as a premier destination for nature lovers seeking to connect with the natural world.

Elk – Majestic Elk are a common sight in Jasper, often seen grazing in meadows or crossing roads, their bugling calls echoing during the rut season.

Caribou – The endangered Caribou, woodland wanderers, roam Jasper’s higher altitudes, their presence critical to the ecosystem and a conservation priority within the park.

Bighorn Sheep – Sure-footed Bighorn Sheep grace the park’s rocky outcrops, their impressive curved horns a sight to behold, especially during mating displays.

Mountain Goat – Adapted to life on steep cliffs, Mountain Goats with their white coats and calm demeanor, navigate Jasper’s most rugged terrains with ease.

Beaver – As ecosystem engineers, Beavers play a crucial role in shaping Jasper’s aquatic habitats, their dams creating wetlands that support diverse plant and animal life.

Moose – Solitary Moose can be found near Jasper’s waterways, browsing on aquatic vegetation, their tall stature and long faces making them unmistakable.

Hoary Marmot – Nicknamed the “whistle pig,” the Hoary Marmot is known for its loud alarm calls, a common resident of the park’s alpine areas.

American Pika – The tiny, energetic American Pika, a relative of rabbits and hares, is often heard calling among the rocks in Jasper’s high country.

White-tailed DeerWhite-tailed Deer are frequently spotted at lower elevations in Jasper, their graceful movements and namesake tails visible as they flee from threats.

Snowshoe Hare – In winter, Snowshoe Hares‘ white coats camouflage them against the snow, a vital prey species for many of Jasper’s predators.

Jasper National Park’s diverse wildlife, from the elusive Caribou to the industrious Beaver, showcases the incredible variety of life that flourishes in this spectacular Canadian wilderness, inviting visitors to explore and appreciate the intricate web of natural relationships that define the park.

Mount Edith Cavell

Standing as an iconic symbol of Jasper National Park, Mount Edith Cavell is renowned for its stunning beauty and dramatic landscapes. Rising to an elevation of 3,363 meters (11,033 feet), it dominates the skyline with its rugged peaks and imposing glaciers.

The mountain is named after Edith Cavell, a British nurse executed during World War I, and its towering presence is a testament to her courage and sacrifice.

Visitors can admire the mountain’s majestic beauty from viewpoints along the Edith Cavell Road or embark on a hike to the base of the Angel Glacier, where they can witness cascading waterfalls and towering ice formations amidst the awe-inspiring alpine scenery.

Pyramid Mountain

As one of the most recognizable landmarks in Jasper National Park, Pyramid Mountain captivates visitors with its distinctive pyramid-shaped peak and breathtaking vistas.

Rising to an elevation of 2,766 meters (9,075 feet), it offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountain ranges, turquoise lakes, and lush valleys.

Popular activities on Pyramid Mountain include hiking, with trails leading to scenic viewpoints such as the Pyramid Overlook, and photography, as the mountain provides a stunning backdrop for capturing the beauty of the Canadian Rockies.

Whether admired from afar or explored up close, Pyramid Mountain enchants visitors with its majestic presence and natural splendor.

Whistlers Mountain

Offering sweeping views of Jasper National Park and beyond, Whistlers Mountain is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and sightseers alike.

At an elevation of 2,469 meters (8,100 feet), it is accessible via the Jasper SkyTram, a scenic aerial tramway that whisks visitors to the summit in just seven minutes.

From the top, visitors can enjoy panoramic vistas of the surrounding mountain ranges, including Mount Edith Cavell and Pyramid Mountain, as well as the town of Jasper nestled in the valley below.

Hiking trails at the summit provide opportunities to explore the alpine terrain and encounter unique flora and fauna, making Whistlers Mountain a must-visit attraction in Jasper National Park.

Athabasca Falls

Located along the scenic Icefields Parkway, Athabasca Falls is one of the most popular waterfalls in Jasper National Park. Carved by the powerful flow of the Athabasca River, the falls cascade over a series of rugged limestone ledges, creating a stunning display of natural beauty and power.

Visitors can admire the falls from various viewpoints accessible via paved walking paths, offering opportunities to witness the sheer force of the rushing water as it plunges into the churning canyon below.

Surrounding picnic areas and interpretive displays provide additional opportunities for visitors to learn about the geology and history of the area, making Athabasca Falls a must-see destination for visitors exploring Jasper National Park.

Sunwapta Falls

Situated in the heart of Jasper National Park, Sunwapta Falls is celebrated for its breathtaking beauty and scenic surroundings.

Fed by the Sunwapta River, the falls consist of two distinct tiers: the upper falls, which plunge dramatically over a narrow gorge, and the lower falls, which cascade gracefully into a tranquil pool below.

Visitors can access viewpoints overlooking both falls via short, well-maintained hiking trails, offering stunning views of the rushing water and surrounding mountain scenery.

Sunwapta Falls is easily accessible by car and is a popular stop along the Icefields Parkway, attracting visitors with its natural splendor and tranquil ambiance.

Icefields Parkway

One of the most iconic attractions along the Icefields Parkway, the Athabasca Glacier is a majestic river of ice that captivates visitors with its sheer size and stunning beauty.

Located within the Columbia Icefield, the glacier stretches for over six kilometers and descends from the towering peaks of the Canadian Rockies.

Visitors can explore the glacier on guided tours, which provide opportunities to walk on its icy surface and learn about its formation and significance.

The glacier is also visible from the nearby Icefield Centre, where visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers from observation decks and interpretive exhibits.

Athabasca Glacier is a must-visit destination for those seeking to experience the awe-inspiring beauty of Jasper National Park’s glacial landscapes.

Engaging Jasper National Park

Explore the breathtaking landscapes of Jasper National Park on its extensive network of hiking trails. With over 1,000 kilometers of trails to choose from, hikers can venture into pristine wilderness areas, alpine meadows, and rugged mountain terrain.

Highlights include the iconic Skyline Trail, which offers panoramic views of the surrounding peaks, and the challenging Wilcox Pass Trail, known for its stunning vistas of the Columbia Icefield.

Whether you’re seeking a leisurely stroll or a challenging backcountry adventure, hiking in Jasper National Park provides endless opportunities to connect with nature and discover the park’s natural beauty.

Discover the breathtaking beauty of Jasper National Park from the comfort of your car on one of its scenic drives. Cruise along the Icefields Parkway, one of the most scenic highways in the world, and marvel at the towering peaks, sparkling glaciers, and turquoise lakes that line the route.

Stop at scenic viewpoints and roadside pullouts to capture photographs of the stunning landscapes and keep an eye out for wildlife along the way. Other scenic drives include the Maligne Lake Road, which leads to the picturesque Maligne Lake, and the Athabasca Falls Parkway, which offers views of powerful waterfalls and rushing rivers.

Jasper National Park Trails

Maligne Canyon Trail

Rating: Easy to Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: 2.1 miles round trip with about 330 feet (100 meters) elevation gain

Description: This trail offers an intimate view of the deepest canyon in Jasper National Park, with several bridges crossing over the Maligne River, providing spectacular views of waterfalls, fossils, and limestone walls. In winter, it’s a popular spot for ice walking, while summer hikers enjoy lush vegetation and roaring water.

Sulphur Skyline Trail

Rating: Difficult

Distance and Elevation Gain: 5 miles round trip with about 2,300 feet (700 meters) elevation gain

Description: Starting from the Miette Hot Springs, the Sulphur Skyline Trail climbs steeply to a summit offering panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. It’s a challenging hike, but the reward is unparalleled 360-degree views. Many hikers rejuvenate with a dip in the hot springs post-hike.

Valley of the Five Lakes

Rating: Easy to Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: 2.9 miles loop with about 492 feet (150 meters) elevation gain

Description: This picturesque loop takes hikers past five stunningly beautiful lakes, each with its unique shade of blue or green. The trail is well-marked and relatively easy, making it accessible for families. It’s a great way to experience the tranquil beauty of Jasper’s lake country.

Bald Hills Trail

Rating: Moderate to Difficult

Distance and Elevation Gain: 6.8 miles round trip with about 1,640 feet (500 meters) elevation gain

Description: Providing one of the best views of Maligne Lake, the Bald Hills trail is a rewarding hike that offers panoramic vistas of the lake below and surrounding mountain peaks. The trail can be steep in sections but offers several routes to accommodate different skill levels.

Edith Cavell Meadows Trail

Rating: Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: 3.4 miles round trip with about 1,640 feet (500 meters) elevation gain

Description: This trail circles the base of Mount Edith Cavell, one of Jasper’s most iconic mountains, with paths leading to meadows bursting with wildflowers, glacial ponds, and the Angel Glacier. It’s a moderately challenging hike that rewards with breathtaking alpine scenery and close-up views of the mountain’s glaciers.


1. What is Jasper National Park known for?

Jasper National Park, located in the Canadian Rockies of Alberta, Canada, is known for its stunning mountain landscapes, pristine wilderness, and abundant wildlife.

The park is renowned for its majestic peaks, including the iconic Mount Edith Cavell and Pyramid Mountain, as well as its rugged canyons, cascading waterfalls, and turquoise glacial lakes.

Visitors come to Jasper National Park to explore its extensive network of hiking trails, which range from easy walks to challenging backcountry treks, offering opportunities to discover remote alpine meadows, ancient forests, and panoramic viewpoints.

The park is also home to a diverse array of wildlife, including elk, moose, bighorn sheep, and grizzly bears, making it a paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts alike.

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