The Sawback Trail follows the rugged Sawback Range from the town of Banff to Lake Louise over a distance of 74km (about 45 miles). There are side trails to be discovered which would increase the distance.
On Day 6 the hike will be going for a side trip to Badgers Pass (2,545m) covering a distance one way of 5.5 km after leaving the Badger Pass Junction Campground (Jo29) at the 43.5 km mark. Care should be taken when the days are windy.
[48-Badger Pass Junction and campground necessity]
[49-Trail to Badger Pass - click to enlarge]
[51-click to enlarge]
[52-Badger Pass Junction camprground - leaving]
[53- Indian Paintbrush]
Badger Pass is reached after 5km on a trail that steadily climbs leading to remote wilderness and the headwaters of the Cascade River. It is one of the highest hiking passes in Banff National Park.
[54-Going up Badger Pass -click to enlarge]
The trail crosses over the creek that drains the western slope through forests and meadows.
[55-Up Badger Pass - click to enlarge]
[56 - Click to enlarge]
[57 - Up to Badger Pass - click to enlarge]
[59- Click to enlarge]
[60-Badgers Pass - click to enlarge]
[61-Badgers Pass - click to enlarge]
[62- Badgers Pass looking west - click to enlarge]
[63-click to enlarge]
[65-click to enlarge]
Bonnet Peak (3234m) is to the north of the pass and next to it is the Bonnet Icefield.
[66-Bonnet Glacier - click to enlarge]
Sources: ParksCanada – Banff [http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/ab/banff/activ/activ17a_E.asp] Backcountry Overview [http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/ab/banff/activ/activ17_e.asp] Trail Conditions [http://www.pc.gc.ca/apps/tcond/cond_e.asp?oPark=100092] Backpacking Equipment Checklist [http://www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/ab/banff/activ/activ10_e.asp] Canadian Rockies Trail Guide by Brian Patton, Bart Robinson, 2007, pp.49 http://waputik.tripod.com/gdt_sawback.htm Gem Trek maps for Lake Louise and Skoki [http://www.gemtrek.com/lakelouise.html] Gem Trek maps for Banff and Mount Assiniboine [http://www.gemtrek.com/banffassiniboine.html] HI Hostels Intl Survival Guide http://www.hihostels.ca/docs/hipm/Fall2007.pdf