- Resort altitude: 1645m
- Lower slopes: 1630m
- Upper slopes: 2730m
- Total pistes: 7748acres
Some long greens
Lake Louise offers first-timers a package that includes a beginner pass with tuition and equipment rental. There is a decent nursery area near the base served by three moving carpets. You progress to the gentle, wide Wiwaxy (a designated 'learning area'), Pinecone Way and the slightly more difficult Deer Run or Eagle Meadows. The greens in the Powder Bowls and in the Larch area are worth trying for the views, though some do contain slightly steep pitches and can get busy.
Some good cruising
Almost half the runs are classified as intermediate. But from the top of the Front Side the blue runs down are little more than paths in places, and there are very few blues or greens in the Powder Bowls. Once you get part-way down the Front Side the blues are much more interesting. And when groomed, the Men's and Ladies' Downhill black runs are great fast cruises on the lower half of the mountain. Juniper, in the same area, is a varied cruise. Meadowlark is a beautiful treelined single-black run to the base area, curling away from the lifts - to find it from the Grizzly Express gondola, first follow the Eagle Meadows green. The Larch area has some short but ideal intermediate runs with visitors enjoying the natural bumps of the aptly named blue run, Rock Garden. The adventurous should try the blue Boomerang run - which starts with a short side-step up from the top of the Summit drag - and also some of the ungroomed terrain in the Powder Bowls reachable from that run.
There are plenty of steep slopes - but bear in mind that powder is less likely here than in many other Canadian resorts. On the Front Side, as well as a score of marked black-diamond trails in and above the trees, there is the alluring West Bowl, reached from the Summit drag - a wide, open expanse of snow outside the area boundary to be explored with a guide. Inside the boundary, the Powder Bowls area on the Back Side offers countless black mogul/powder runs, though there is no great variation in character. From the Summit drag, you can drop into The Ultimate Steeps area if it is open, directly behind the peak - a row of exceptional chutes almost 1km long. Starting from the blue Boomerang trail, you can also access much tamer, wide, open slopes in Boomerang Bowl. The Top of the World six-pack takes you to the very popular Paradise Bowl/ Eagle Ridge area, also served by its own triple chair on the Back Side - there are endless variants here, ranging from comfortably steep single diamonds to very challenging double diamonds. The seriously steep slope served by the Ptarmigan quad chair has great gladed terrain and is a good place to escape the crowds. The Larch area has some steep double-diamond stuff in the trees. And with good snow-cover, the open snowfields at the top are great for those with the energy to hike up. Heli-skiing day trips are available to bases outside the National Park.
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