°F / in / ft / miles°C / cm / m / km

Lake Louise Ski Resort

Lake Louise Resort Guide

Lake Louise, Canada

Rated: 4/5 (from 6 ratings)

Lake Louise Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Intermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders and Apres-Ski!
Total Piste Length100km62 miles
Highest Lift2,640m8,661ft
Resort Height1,650m5,413ft
 Nearest AirportCalgary International
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Lake Louise at a glance

For scenic grandeur, imaginative terrain design, and sheer size, the Lake Louise Ski Area ranks with the finest ski resorts in the world. Encompassing eleven square miles, spread over four separate mountain faces interconnected by a lift and trail system that is comparable to the European ski circuit concept, this is the largest ski area in Canada. Visitors from Europe, who may have been somewhat disappointed by the rather boring rolling hills on which some of North America's most famous ski resorts are located, will be mesmerised by the spectacular beauty of the place. In addition to over 100 named runs, some over five miles in length, Lake Louise offers thousands of acres of open powder bowls, glades and chutes.

 When will it snow in Lake Louise?

There is currently no significant snow in the 7-day forecast for Lake Louise.

See our Snow Forecast for Lake Louise for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Lake Louise Facts, Stats and Ratings

Lake Louise Rated

Ratings for Lake Louise
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers
Beginners
Snowboarding
Snow
Apres-Ski

How High is Lake Louise?

Max Vertical and Resort Altitude for Lake Louise
Highest Lift2,640m8,661ft
Lowest Piste1,650m5,413ft
Resort Altitude (Lake Louise)1,650m5,413ft
Max Vertical990m3,248ft

Ski Area, Pistes and Lifts

Lake Louise Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats for Lake Louise
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
96
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
26
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
17
Downhill
Total Length
100km62 miles
Cross Country
Total Length
80km50 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts
12
°F / in / ft / miles°C / cm / m / km

Lake Louise Summary

The Canadian Ski Resort of Lake Louise has direct access to 100km62 miles of downhill skiing, with 113 marked pistes, served by a total of 12 ski lifts.

The ski resort itself is at 1,650m5,413ft, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With ski lifts as high as 2,640m8,661ft, skiing and snowboarding is assured throughout the season.

Lake Louise Overview

For scenic grandeur, imaginative terrain design, and sheer size, the Lake Louise Ski Area ranks with the finest ski resorts in the world. Encompassing eleven square miles, spread over four separate mountain faces interconnected by a lift and trail system that is comparable to the European ski circuit concept, this is the largest ski area in Canada. Visitors from Europe, who may have been somewhat disappointed by the rather boring rolling hills on which some of North America's most famous ski resorts are located, will be mesmorised by the spectacular beauty of the place. In addition to over 100 named runs, some over five miles in length, Lake Louise offers thousands of acres of open powder bowls, glades and chutes.

When it comes to reliable snow, 'The Lake', is again hard to beat. With copious amounts of natural snow backed up by Canada's largest snow making system, Lake Louise has a season that runs from early November to mid May. Thirty years' average temperatures see a drop to -5 degrees celcius in December and -7 in January. With dozens of long protected tree lined runs, and 65% of the terrain below treeline, you can ski at Louise even when it is snowing.

Skiers and 'boarders skiing Louise normally stay either in Banff, a 45 minute drive away, or in Lake Louise village located five minutes from the lifts and linked to them by a free bus shuttle service. Within the village you will find over 1,000 units for accommodation along with twenty restaurants and bars. These '1000 units' include the luxurious bedrooms of the world famous Chateau Lake Louise, one of the world's greatest hotels, built in 1890 when the railroad arrived in probably one of the most beautiful locations in the world for any hotel - on the shores of the lake with the mountains rising majestically behind. The hotel was extensively refurbished for its centenary. Lake Louise itself has offered cross-country skiing since the 1890s and downhill for 80 years.

The first downhillers were a group of youngsters from Banff who, having learnt to ski downhill on Mt Norquay and slept the night in the Lake Louise train station, headed out on to the slopes. A decade later the same youngsters who had skied Louise in 1920 teamed up with some of the original Swiss guides who had led cross country tours in the area for 40 years and built the Canadian Rockies' first chalet, Skoki, in the summer of 1930. More huts followed and the first lift, a poma, was installed in 1954. A few years afterwards, when the Trans-Canada Highway passed through the area, the gondola tramway was installed in 1958. The rest, as they say, is history.

Grand plans for a big 6500 bed resort in the 1960s was blocked as 'too big' in 1972, largely due to the area's location in the precious National Park. However growth, slow and controlled, has continued with new lifts gradually bringing the resort to a level where it can easily attract skiers from all over the world. The growth restriction is considered by many to be a major asset and helps Lake Louise to remain so special to its many fans.

Lake Louise - On the Mountain

The longest possible descent in Lake Louise is 8km5 miles long and the most difficult run is the 'ER 3'.

Skiing in Lake Louise

Lake Louise's skiing is spread across two mountains with four faces between them. You can ski in the sun all day by progressing between South face, Larch, Ptarmigan and the Back Bowls. All levels of skiing ability will be happy with the terrain at Louise. Despite its daunting size the area has been designed so that there's an easy 'green' run down from the top of each of the 11 chairs, as well as, of course, tougher terrain. There are gentle beginners' slopes at the base of the mountain but you can get on one of the chairs pretty well as soon as you can make a basic turn and return down one of the gentler trails such as Pika or Marmot.

Intermediate level skiers will find Lake Louise hard to beat, with trails of up to 8km (5 miles) in length providing wonderful long cruises and most of the terrain accessible to stronger intermediates. Many will want to get stuck in to the back bowls and the famous endless powder skiing - the ski school is a great way of making the most of both.

Expert skiers will find plenty to entertain them at Lake Louise: the Back Bowl skiing includes gladed and bump runs as well as open powder. An ideal introduction to the ski area is Lake Louise's Ski Friends program. Twice daily, volunteer hosts and hostesses who know and love Louise conduct free guided tours geared to the individual tastes of visitors. Two larger area passes are available.

The tri-area lift pass includes unlimited use of lifts at Lake Louise's neighbouring 'Banff ski areas' - Mount Norquay, the smallest and closest to Banff, and Sunshine Village. The pass, which can be purchased in advance over the internet, includes free use of the scheduled shuttle service between Banff/Lake Louise hotels & the ski areas and one free night's skiing (Friday only!) at Mount Norquay.

The 24,000 square foot Lodge of the Ten Peaks, located at the base of the ski hill, which opened for the '98-99 season. is a vast post-and-beam log building, constructed from local stone and timber, features a wrap-around sun deck and a wonderful river rock fireplace which stretches to the height of the two-story, vaulted ceiling. The Lodge houses a cappuccino bar, cafeteria, smoke-free après-ski bar, retail and rental shops, as well as customer service.

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.

Snowboarding in Lake Louise

One of the best North American destinations for boarders thanks to its vast and varied terrain, natural features and laid back attitude, Lake Louise added a new snowboard park recently complete with half pipe, quarter pipe and plenty of other obstacles to keep park fans entertained.

Lake Louise's Snowboard School is also recognised as one of Canada's best, and largest. The variety of tuition packages is one of the biggest in the business and includes beginner and experienced 'boarder camps, private and group lessons, the newly introduced 'Shreddies' classes for kids aged 7 to 12 and daily clinics in Half pipe or Freeride technique.

When is Lake Louise open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates for Lake Louise.

Usual opening is early November, and usual closing is Early May.

NOTE:- Lift and Piste openings are always subject to Snow Conditions in Lake Louise.

Snow Making

Lake Louise is able to make snow, with 100 snow cannons.

Ski Lift Capacity

The 12 ski lifts of Lake Louise are able to uplift 18,790 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Where is Lake Louise?

Lake Louise is in the Canadian Rockies in Alberta, Canada.

Map of Lake Louise

Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen or see Map showing location of Lake Louise

How to get to Lake Louise

 By Air

The nearest airport to Lake Louise is Calgary International which is 137 minutes drive away.

Lake Louise - Off the Mountain

Lake Louise Aprés Ski

Lake Louise is an 'away from it all' destination and is certainly not a hedonist's heaven after the lifts close. Most skiers and 'boarders either stay in their own accommodation, make a trip over to a neighbouring one, or head for the bright lights of Banff.

The Glacier Saloon in the chateau Lake Louise, which doubles as a night club, is generally regarded as the best spot in the resort for a lively night out. Alternatives include the Outpost in the Post Hotel and the Explorers lounge.

Other attractions include sleigh rides, skating, Wild West evenings and night skiing at Mt Norquay on Fridays.

Lake Louise

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