Columbia Icefields Area

The Columbia Icefield is located in the Canadian Rockies, astride the Continental Divide of North America. The icefield lies in the northwestern tip of Banff National Park and the southern end of Jasper National Park. The icefield feeds eight major glaciers and is surrounded by some of the highest mountains in the Canada Rockies.

The Wilcox Pass Trail is one of the premier hikes in the Rockies. It gets you up into the alpine tundra and provides eye level views of the Athabasca Glacier and the Icefields region all the way along to the height of the pass.

The Athabasca River and the North Saskatchewan River originate in the Columbia Icefield, as do tributary headwaters of the Columbia River. As the icefield is atop a triple Continental Divide these waters flow ultimately north to the Arctic Ocean, east to Hudson Bay (and thence to the North Atlantic Ocean), and south and west to the Pacific Ocean.