Photograph Moraine Lake

Added by Julian Brezden

Distance: a short 5 minute walk from a large parking area. Elevation: 6,181 ft. (at the surface). A one hour drive from Banff, Alberta, Canada. Stunning views at any angle. Very accessible to anyone.

Showing up at Moraine Lake before dawn is a must as to avoid the multitude of tours busses. The morning sun is subtle and magical. The lake, being glacially fed, does not reach its crest until mid to late June. When it is full, it reflects a distinct shade of blue. The color is due to the refraction of light off the rock flour deposited in the lake on a continual basis.

If you want to stay overnight, the Moraine Lake Lodge is located at the bottom of the lake. Canoe rentals are also available to explore the lake, which is certainly a must do activity.

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Tags

Photography
Hiking
Family Friendly
Forest
Lake
Picnic Area
Scenic

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Beat The Crowds, Go in the Fall

Go in the fall (late September, first week of October) to truly enjoy Moraine Lake at its finest and to avoid most of the crowds. If you're lucky, you'll get to see the larches in their full yellow beauty during about a week in late September. In early October, Moraine usually gets its first snow. Do bear in mind that they usually close the road to Moraine for cars on or around Canadian Thanksgiving or so, and does not open until spring. Some daring cross-country skiers might want to make the 20-mile round trip trek from Lake Louise in the winter.

Do it early morning

I made a point of showing up early on a summer morning, at around 6am. This gives you incredible light and the parking lot is not too busy.

Rock Pile

The most magnificent lake in all if Banff. Author doesn't really state, but hike up to the rock pile for your shots!

Nearby Adventures

  • Scramble the Tower of Babel

    Starting at the Moraine Lake parking lot follow the trail East along behind the large pile of boulders along the lake shore. Once you reach the foot of the Tower of Babel scramble up the slope to heading towards the valley between the two peaks. T...

    2.8 miles 1476.4 ft gain

  • Climb the Tower of Babel

    Fairly short approach that begins to the left of Moraine Lake on the consolation lakes trail. Follow a foot path until you see a faint trail in the scree that moves up towards the tower-would recommend wearing a helmet on the approach. This is act...

  • Scramble Mount Temple

    Mount Temple is a stunning iconic mountain in Banff National Park located in the Canadian Rockies. It overlooks the Lake Louise area and stands at a massive 3542m (11,624ft) , making it one of the many sought after 11,000ers.To reach the mountain ...

    12.4 miles 6430.4 ft gain

  • Scramble the Ten Peaks via the Perren Route

    A true adventure with lots of route finding, glacier travel, loose rock and high altitude views. This is not for the faint hearted or first timers.From the Moraine Lake parking lot walk down the east side of the lake along the well maintained trai...