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Winter Adventures: Cross-country Skiing to Moraine Lake

Author: Simona Haluzova


Moraine Lake Road Trail Stats:

Length: 24 km roundtrip

Elevation gain: 250 m

Duration: 4-5 hours 

Difficulty:  Medium, but on the way back down there are steep descents

Trail Grooming: Double trackset with skating lane

Moraine Lake is one of the most photographed places in the Rockies – at least in the summer! In the winter, however, you can have the place all to yourself! A set of well maintained cross country tracks lead past a majestic landscape of mountains and forest, taking you into the silence you will only find at Moraine Lake in winter. Whether you’re a beginner, an Olympian, or just a slow recreational skier, you’ll be right at home on Moraine Lake Road trail. The road to Moraine Lake Lodge is closed during winter and instead you will find perfectly groomed cross country skiing tracks.

How to get there

The tracks start close to Lake Louise, just head up the road towards  Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and about halfway up you’ll find the road to Moraine Lake on your left hand side where you will find a parking lot (number 1 on the map below). The cross-country skiing tracks are on a gentle upwards slope and are suitable for all skiing skill levels. 

Views, Views, Views!

After 6 km along the trail, you will have the Bow Valley and Lake Louise Ski Resort on your left hand side while skiing towards Moraine Lake. The further you make your way along the trail, the more the views will open up.

After about 9 km, the groomed tracks end due to avalanche danger, but if conditions permit, you can continue on the next 3 km to Moraine Lake. Please be sure to check avalanche conditions before heading out on the trail, and be sure to stop by the tourist information center in Lake Louise, where the local staff will be able to tell you if it is safe to continue beyond this point.

At this point along the trail, you will be rewarded with the stunning view of the Valley of Ten Peaks. Here, you will be welcomed into the serene embrace of the infamous mountain range, all while enjoying the beauty and majesty of the towering mountains in total privacy!

Safety First

Remember that conditions and available services change frequently in the mountains, so it's always sensible to check with local park authorities or visitor centers for the latest information on cross-country skiing in the Moraine Lake area. Always prioritize safety, be aware of weather conditions, and follow any guidelines or regulations set by the park. Parks Canada have free downloads on their webpage for winter trails in the Banff and Lake Louise area:

Happy skiing!

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