Lake Louise and Moraine Lake

Lake Louise and Moraine Lake

Lake Louise is one of the most beautiful, famous, and most-visited locations in the Canadian Rockies. Located just outside of the town that shares its name, the lake is also the site of the world-renowned Chateau Lake Louise. Many tourists stop here for a quick photo, but the real beauty of the area lies in the local trails. The trail leading to the back of the lake is well-paved, with many places to stop and rest along the way. It is a short walk, about 20 minutes in length each way, and at the end of the trail is an flat-faced outcrop that is often littered with rock climbers. More strenuous hikes also have their trail heads here, including the hikes to Mirror Lake as well as to two of the most beautiful tea houses found in the Mountain Parks. Another way to experience these trails is to take a guided trail ride by horse.

Lesser known but but still just as spactacular is Moraine Lake. To get to this site you need to take the turnoff located on the left-hand side of the road leading up to Lake Louise. From here it is a beautiful 11 km drive along the mountain’s edge that provides a wonderful view of the valley below. The Moraine Lake area is also quite popular for rock climbers, however if you are planning to hike here you will need to be in a group of four. This is because grizzly bears are often found in this area, and groups of four or more are less likely to be attacked than smaller groups. If you are not travelling in a group of four, you needn’t worry- the Lake Louise Information Centre has a sign-up sheet where you can write down when you plan on hiking, how many people are in your group, and what trail you would like to take. If you can’t find anyone else who is planning on hiking at the same time as you this way, then you can head up to the trail head and wait to join with a larger group.

Both of these areas are popular with both tour companies and individual tourists, and so are often very busy during the summer season. The best time to visit either of the sites to ensure that you can find a parking spot is beofre 10:00 am and after 4:00 pm.

Photos by J. Verge

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