Truthfully, Moraine Lake is the most beautiful place I have ever been in my life and that’s not an exaggeration. I had seen photos from the Tower of Babel on Instagram and knew that we had to hike it while we were in the area. This hike is not advertised at the base of the lake, so plan and know where the trail starts before you go.
This was our experience;
We stopped to rent climbing helmets at a shop, called Wilson’s, in Lake Louise Village. It’s recommended that you wear a helmet because of all the loose rocks. They were only $5 each, so we figured we better be safe than sorry.
After you park, go to the main trailhead and follow the trail towards Consolation Lakes. This trail goes behind the viewing area and away from Lake Moraine. After about 800 feet you will see a “scree” field on the right hand side that goes straight up. You will see one peak that’s a bit separated from the others, that’s Tower of Babel and that’s where you will be headed!
There is no trail, you literally hike up the rocky scree field the whole way. It’s steep and the rocks are loose We were on all-fours for the majority of the hike up. Also, I am happy that we had helmets! There was another group hiking above us and several rocks came tumbling down. The rocks gain momentum and can come at you pretty fast. Many hikers didn’t have helmets and they were fine, but if you have one or can rent one you should! Also, if you cause a rock to fall make sure to yell “rock” so those below you are aware.
As you climb up the scree field you will get views of Lake Moraine to the right until you get enclosed in two rock walls on either side. You will be able to see the top of the scree field the whole hike up. There’s really no “right” path to get to the top so just find a route that works for you.
Once you get to the top of the scree field you will see Consolation Lakes in front of you. Hike to the left to get to the summit of the Tower of Babel. From here, you only have about 5 minutes and the hike is much easier (it’s more of a hike and not a scramble). It took us about 1.5 hours to get to the top.
At the top we hung out, made some new friends, had a beer, took some pictures and enjoyed the amazing 360 degree views. Moraine Lake is framed by 10 peaks and the water is an unreal turquoise color.
The hike down is much easier. Be careful not to fall but you can easily slide down the rocks on your feet. It only took us about an hour to descend.
This hike was worth every second!
At the bottom we made our way back to the viewing area to see Lake Moraine close-up. It is SO beautiful and I hope everyone has a chance to visit once in their lifetime!
- Wear a light backpack, I found that my larger pack moved around a lot as I scrambled
- If you have hiking boots, wear them. I was so happy I did, but Barrett had trail-running shoes on and he was fine too.
- Go early! The parking lot at Moraine Lake fills up fast so you want to get there before it gets busy.
- Rent a helmet. Your brain is worth it.
- Make sure to spend time at the top and take pictures. We spent almost a whole hour at the top.
- Be careful! The scramble can be a little sketchy in some areas. It’s not long, but there aren’t that many places to rest.
Let me know if you have any other tips or know of any other great hikes near Lake Moraine.