Tershishner Falls Winter Hike

A great family option

This trail is a great option for those looking at getting started with winter hiking.

Published on April 18, 2023 | Last updated on April 18, 2023

Tershishner icefall makes for a great introduction to hiking in winter. This relatively short hike up a creek ends in a small icefall at the mouth of Tershishner Canyon. With little elevation gain, easy navigation and low commitment of time, this trail is a superb option for families. If there is lots of fresh snow, this trail can become much more difficult. The snow collects on the creek bed and can be notoriously deep; bring snowshoes just in case!

A frozen waterfall on Allstones Creek
The Allstones Creek Canyon

At a Glance

  • Distance: 3.2 km return
  • Elevation gain: ~85 m
  • Challenge Level: Easy | Family Friendly
  • Trail type: There and back
  • Congestion: Minimal
  • Management: Kiska / Wilson PLUZ
  • Other Trail Uses: None

Trailhead:  Approximately 26km west of Nordegg and 64km east of Banff National Park boundary.

We all have our part to do to keep this place special. Planning ahead is key to ensuring that we all continue to enjoy adventures in the Nordegg & Abraham Lake region. These are a few of the things you can do to help:

  • Minimize your impact by using existing sites, fire rings and toilets instead of creating your own.
  • Know about current fire bans, make sure that your fire is completely out before you go and buy firewood instead of cutting down trees. Remember that shooting fireworks is not allowed in the region.
  • Keep your site clean and your food stored inside your vehicle to help keep our wildlife wild. Always use bear-proof garbage bins.
  • While alcohol is now permitted in some Alberta Parks day-use areas, none of those are in our region. Alcohol is only allowed at registered campsites.
  • Be mindful of your neighbours and other visitors, including keeping noise to a minimum.
  • Be prepared for adventures in a remote area. Explore within your skills to reduce the strain on our volunteer search and rescue team.
  • Remember that cell service is limited. We recommend carrying a satellite communicator, like a Zoleo, on your adventures.
  • Support local businesses and communities in Cline River, the Bighorn and Nordegg.

Information provided here may be inaccurate or outdated. Always make sure to obtain current information before going on your adventure.

The trail guide


To reach the parking area coming from Nordegg, turn west (right) onto the gravel road just past the signed creek. Park as soon as possible, as the trail starts by entering the ditch beside the highway. Do not get confused with the quad trail further down the road.

The entrance to the canyon near the highway

Trailhead to creek 0.2 km

From wherever you parked, make your way back to the main highway and enter the ditch. Follow it north, eventually entering a short section of bushes where the trail leads you onto the creek.

Allstones Creek Canyon

Creek to forested section 1.2 km

Once on the frozen creek bed, follow it upstream most of the way. The first section meanders through relatively open forest and can be windy. Soon, a large wall of solidified gravel and rocks appears on your left. From here, the forest starts to get thicker and the hills begin to rise around you, providing shelter from the wind. There is a section of trail that goes through the forest, but it can be hard to find in the snow. If the navigation gets confusing, simply follow the creek. In a few spots, you will need to duck under or go around a few trees that have fallen across the creek. Continuing onward, keep an eye out for a flagged tree on the right that shows the way into the forest. This section of trail bypasses an area of the creek that is choked with deadfall and is extremely hard to pass through.

Allstones Creek Canyon
Frozen falls on Allstones Creek
Frozen falls on Allstones Creek

Forested Section to Icefall 0.2 km

Work your way easily through the forest, beside the creek. Soon, some boulders and broken cliff bands will appear, and the trail will spit you out back onto the creek. From here, the canyon walls begin to rise and just around the corner the icefall awaits your arrival. The 2-meter frozen waterfall spills over some shale bands and creates an intimate setting for you to enjoy.

Allstones Creek Canyon
Frozen falls on Allstones Creek
Frozen falls on Allstones Creek

The Return Trail

Return the way you came.

The People

All the stories we share are by locals, whether they live here or love our region and contribute to making it an amazing place.

Contributors to this Story:


  • Brett Pawlyk & Annabelle Oung

    They have been exploring the Canadian Rockies and the world's mountain ranges for close to four decades combined. They manage HeLa Ventures, an outdoor education centre located between Rocky Mountain House and Nordegg. Brett also guides for Nordegg Adventures in the winter and Annabelle is a freelance translator. When they are not working you'll find them hiking and scrambling in the region with their daughter Tessa.