Our trip to Banff, Lake Louise was amazing. We’ve were stunned by the beauty of the lake, but we wanted to hike some of the amazing trails around here on this trip.
It all started with a sunrise 5am, we heard that morning sunrises on clear days the mountain in the backdrop of the lake shines (Mt Whyte), and it’s that glow which reflects on the green waters of the lake. Heavenly is how this is described; it isn’t that far off. It is surprisingly busy this time of day but once you experience this you can understand why.
We decided we would hike to the tea house located at the top of lake Agnes. The hike begins near the Chateau and consists of several switchbacks along a trail that climbs up the 435-meter elevation gain. Like the beach, this is a very busy trail, often you’ll become part of a larger group as you climb up or come down. The chipmunks are the delight along the way of this hike, they greet you along the rocks.
Along the way you come to a beautiful lake appropriately called “mirror lake”, which sits below the treehouse waterfalls. The lake is pristine and cold and a nice place to rest and have a drink of your canteen. Continue the hike along the trail and you meet up with an old horse trail, this is where it gets muddy, and stinky. The last staircase to the tea house is wrought with anticipation until you crest the top and meet the tea house with Lake Agnes, with the “Devils Thumb” in the background, all of this is stunning and quickly make you forget the hike you’ve just accomplished.
The tea house is busy, but if your patient you can get seating on the deck or inside (it is first come first served in all seating areas) but dress warm, its chilly up here most of the year. After your tea and scone I suggest you try the staircase (beyond the small bridge past lake Agnes) as it is another way down (if you feel like a round trip) It has more amazing views as you wander down to Mirror Lake. In all this hike is easily doable, lots of places to take breaks if you need to and it’s not too steep given all the switchbacks along the way.
Enjoy the pictures of this hike!