It's time to escape to nature, so grab your hiking shoes! We know where to find a hidden waterfall only a short drive from the city. This is one of the best hikes near Calgary since it's just under two hours away and takes you to a plunging waterfall and a crystal clear lake.

In one afternoon, you can visit the turquoise waters of Elbow Lake and Edworthy Falls. Your 9.7-kilometre adventure will begin at the Peter Lougheed Provincial Park and continue into Elbow-Sheep Wildland Provincial Park.

But before you start the car to go, take a look at your feet. It better not be some cute strappy sandals or leather slides you are wearing.

You'll need to dust off your hiking boots or some other type of waterproof shoes with good grip.

Changed shoes? Great, now you're ready to park your car at the Elbow Pass Day Use parking area and follow the Elbow Pass Trail.

The good news is you can get the most challenging part over at the start while you have the most energy and then it's nice and flat. You'll need to go uphill along a super steep path until you reach the campground.

The route begins at the calm lake and ends at the waterfall that falls into a mini pool.

But that doesn't mean the middle section will be boring. You'll follow along Elbow River next to old towering evergreen trees.

Then you'll get to see picture-perfect flowering meadows and enjoy Tombstone Mountain views.

You'll need to cross a few shallow mini creeks, so unless you have waterproof shoes, your feet might get wet.

Finally, to get down to the waterfall, make sure to go slowly downhill. You'll want to take a seat, dive into your snack and savour the sight of the cascading water into the aqua pool.

Once you're ready to go home, follow the way you came. Or, you can always extend your stay and camp at Elbow Lake for $12 a night.

Edworthy Falls And Elbow Lake

Price: Free

Address: Kananaskis Trail, Kananaskis, AB

Why You Need To Go: You can find a secret waterfall and a bright blue lake in one afternoon.

Before you get going, check our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.