Family-Friendly Fall Hike For All Hiking Abilities – Lake Louise Shoreline

Category: Hikes + Easy Walks

The Lake Louise Shoreline –  4K return   Elevation gain- minimal

  • All hiking abilities
  • Wide wheel stroller friendly 
  • Benches along the trail,  
  • The trail is primarily in the sun

The stroller-friendly trail starts from the paved pathway in front of the Fairmount Chateau Lake Louise. Look for the statue commemorating the Swiss Guides, employed by the Canadian Pacific Railway hotels between 1899 and 1954.

A fatal climbing incident in 1896 on Mt. Lefroy precipitated the hiring of Swiss Guides by the Canadian Pacific Railway Hotels. These guides brought with them the knowledge and skills acquired from guiding and mountaineering in the Swiss Alps. They were instrumental in leading many eager and wealthy hotel guests on climbs in the Canadian Rocky Mountains.

statued of a Swiss guide in front of the Chateau Lake Louise

The trail hugs the Lake Louise shoreline offering postcard views of the Chateau Lake Louise, the  Victoria Glacier,  and paddlers on the emerald coloured waters of Lake Louise.

Lake Louies shoreline
The paved pathway hugs the shoreline and eventually turns into a very hard-packed dirt path.
Lake Louise shoreline
The paved path turns into this hard-packed dirt trail that ends at the back of the lake. It is for wide-wheeled strollers.
Lake Louise Boathouse
Lake Louise Boat House.  You can rent an iconic red canoe and head out for a paddle on your own, or join one of the voyager canoe rides.
lake Louise with a mountain in the back
A view of Fairview Mountain and Willow Bushes in their fall foliage.

The Stoney Nakoda First Nations called this lake “The Lake of Little Fishes.” In 1882,  Tom Wilson was the first white man to see this lake. Upon seeing the colour of the lake, he called it Emerald Lake: changing native names to English names was customary, albeit wrong,  during the discovery and settlement of Canada in the 1880s.  The name was soon changed to Lake Louise to honour Queen Victoria’s daughter Princess Louise Caroline Alberta.

The emerald colour of this lake and all glacier-fed mountain lakes is a result of rock flour: the glacier grinds and sands the rocks they scrape over, ultimately creating fine rock dust that floats on top of the water. This rock dust reflects the waves of green and blue light, causing the spectacular blue/green colour of the lake.

lake louise
Looking down at Lake Louise from the Big Beehive

The official  Lake Louise Shoreline Trail ends at this bridge, and the Plain of Six Glaciers hike starts after this bridge.  The cliffs in the right of this picture are popular climbing routes in both the summer and winter. It is very common to see climbers here at any time of the year.

delta at the back of Lake Louise
You cannot push a stroller past this bridge.

The Lake Louise Shoreline trail also ends at the site of the Lake Louise delta. A Delta is a deposit of sediments accumulating at the mouth of a river.  In this case, the water flows from the Victoria Glacier meltwater, which is full of Rock Flour that makes its way into Lake Louise.

Lake Louise Delta with meltwater from the Victoria Glacier.
The fine Rock Flour dust is making its way into the lake via this stream of water.

Your view on the way back along this trail is just as spectacular as it provides a full view of the Chateau Lake Louise, with a distant view of the golden Larches that line the slopes of the Lake Louise Ski Resort.

Looking back at the Chateau. The Lake Louise ski runs are in the distance.
All of the benches have this rustic look

When we hike at Lake Louise, we generally finish our days with a trip to the candy store, located inside the hotel. I must confess, the candy store is also for me, as I have a sweet tooth.  Over the years, we have been very fortunate to have stayed as guests at the hotel. We have enjoyed  Afternoon Tea at the Chateau and many dinners and lunches at the various hotel restaurants.  If you like fondues, then I would highly recommend the Walliser Stube restaurant. 

If you want to reward yourself after a day of hiking in the area, then I would suggest trying one of the restaurants at the hotel or head into the village of Lake Louise for a treat there. BTW, there is a candy store in Lake Louise village.

Happy Hiking!

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