"Sideways Falls" ("Big Bend Falls")

Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

About “Sideways Falls” (“Big Bend Falls”)

Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2010-09-21
Date last visited: 2010-09-21

Waterfall Latitude: 52.164
Waterfall Longitude: -117.067

I’m putting “Sideways Falls” or “Big Bend Falls” in quotes because I believe that these are informal names for this fairly conspicuous waterfall that we spotted from the Icefields Parkway (Hwy 93A). I borrowed these names from Bryan Swan’s Pacific Northwest waterfall survey as well as Leon Turnbull’s Waterfalls West, respectively. I suppose giving it these names would sound a lot better than “that waterfall seen from a pullout at a big bend in Hwy 93” or something like that.

In any case, viewing this waterfall was pretty much an exercise in pinpointing its whereabouts on our GPS and then following the GPS‘ instructions until we noticed the falls. At that point, it was a cinch to just see it from afar. Of course, photographing it meant we needed a telephoto lens given how far away the falls was. Without the powerful zoom, the falls would’ve looked puny in our photographs.


We found this waterfall while heading about 2km south (downhill) of the large car park for both Bridal Veil Falls and Panther Falls along the Icefields Parkway (Hwy 93). You can also think of this is as being 16km south of the Columbia Icefields Center (which itself is 103km south of Jasper and 186km north of Banff).

Look for a large pullout as you’re descending on a wide bend towards its bottom. That pullout is where you can park the car and look ahead of you for the waterfall tumbling down the mountainside.

For additional context, Jasper was 365km (under 4 hours drive) west of Edmonton and 412km (5 hours drive) northwest of Calgary.

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Tagged with: banff, national park, alberta, canada, waterfall, icefields, canadian rockies, columbia, sunwapta, jasper, panther creek, behind

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