Moraine Lake Rockpile Trail and Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Canadian Rockies

After a dinner of brats and salad we jumped in the truck and made our way to Moraine Lake, the parking lot was full, unbelievable. We pressed on again for Lake Louise and found good parking in the upper lot. We exited the truck and joined the masses along the paved shore of the lake. The view was spectacular now that the clouds had cleared, the sun was setting over the far end of the lake so the lighting was a bit harsh but the scenery still splendid. We grew sick of the crowds and worked our way around the left side of the lake passed the canoe rentals to escape the hoards. Yes, the people were gone, but now all we could see were idiots in red canoes trying not to run into each other. We didn’t stay long, just long enough to say we had seen Lake Louise before loading up and making our way back to Moraine Lake for one last attempt to get in. Luck would have it that we were able to turn down the road toward the over-the-top popular Moraine Lake.  

It felt like forever driving that road as we climbed higher up the valley, soon the trees began to thin as we could me out the stunning mountains stretching toward the heavens towering above the lake basin. Anchoring the ridge to the east stood Tower of Babel, and Mount Babel. Eventually we found the parking lot, which appeared to be full so I parked at the entrance and waited for a car to show up behind me before proceeding in the hope that someone would back out of a spot ahead of me, turned out my plan worked. As we exited the vehicle the sun was getting low on the horizon. We crossed the parking lot and picked up the Rockpile Trail, which is exactly what it sounds like. Beautifully hand crafted steps cut from rock snake their way around a giant rock pile at the outlet of Moraine Lake before topping out at the small summit and a jaw dropping panoramic view of the Valley of the Ten Peaks and the emerald waters of Moraine Lake.  

The scenery is one of the most spectacular displays I had ever witnessed. I have only up until now seen pictures of Moraine Lake and had always vowed to visit this place one day, needless to say the pictures fall short of seeing it in person. The evening sun’s rays cut through the landscape casting brilliant shadows on the high peaks above. We lingered for a good while, as luck would have it, the crowds were thin at this time of night so we never felt pressured to leave. Below us a lone canoe paddled along the still lake surface. I was desperate to get our kayaks on the water, and began warming up the family to the idea as we descended the rock pile, We even went as far as to scout out a place to launch the boats once we hit the shore. Truth is, I was too tired to paddle the lake, but we were here, and who knows when we would be back, it was almost 8 o’clock at night and we had a huge day, the kids were tired. Robin didn’t want to paddle either and I didn’t blame her, so reluctantly we threw in the towel. So long Moraine Lake, at least until we meet again.  We made our way back to camp arriving just before dark and did not stay up long before crashing hard. The rockpile at Moraine Lake should be on everyone’s bucket list before they die, it’s absolutely stunning and requires very little effort to reach the summit. For more pictures from our trip click the link. Moraine Lake and Lake Louise Pictures.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s