“Iconic hike to Lake Agnes Tea House followed by Big Beehive for views of Lake Louise & Bow Valley.”
— Hayley Cashdollar
Fall Colors · Lake · Views · Waterfall · Wildlife
The Tea house is an unusual hiking treat - makes for a challenging and rewarding adventure.
Bear Advisory in effect at particular times of year - mind the signs at the trailhead and do not feed wildlife.
This classic route brings you to a well-deserved treat at the Lake Agnes Tea House. The trail to the Tea House starts at Lake Louise
. It is a well-marked and well-maintained dirt path. After stopping at the Tea House, continue along the Lake Agnes shoreline and proceed up a series of steep switchbacks for a rewarding view of Lake Louise
and Bow Valley. Don't forget to bring some cash for the Tea House!
Need to Know
Bring cash for the Tea House. On a cold day, try to sit inside the Tea House - it can get cold while you wait! Bring plenty of water - water is not served at the Tea House and the hike up Big Beehive is strenuous.
From the Lake Louise
parking lot, head out on the shoreline between the Fairmont and the lake until reaching the sign marking the split between the shoreline trail and the Lake Agnes trail. Head uphill on the well-worn dirt and pavement path for about 2 miles. About 2 miles into the hike, the trail splits at Mirror Lake. Continue right to head uphill for the final stretch to the Tea House. As you approach the final ascent to the Tea House, you'll hear and then see a small waterfall. Near the waterfall is the base of several flights of stairs that will take you to the Tea House. Take a break and enjoy your time eating soup, sandwiches, and sipping tea!
After your recharge, continue along the Lake Agnes shoreline to the far west side of the lake. After reaching the west side, continue uphill towards the south to start the hike to Big Beehive. Here the trail becomes a series of grueling singletrack switchbacks - mind your step! At the summit of Big Beehive there is a small structure for protection from rain. Scramble through the area for views of Lake Louise
, Bow Valley, and Lake Agnes below. Return to the Lake Agnes Tea House using the same path taken to Big Beehive.
To leave Lake Agnes Tea House, cross the south-facing bridge to a series of staircases on the other side of the waterfall. Taking this route ensures that hikers are not passing each other on the staircases, which can often be slippery. Continue on the dirt track until reaching Mirror Lake. At Mirror Lake, bear right to continue on the Lake Agnes trail all the way to the parking lot.
Flora & Fauna
In the fall there is often a Bear Advisory in this area - bring your bear spray and know how to respond. Do not feed the wildlife! There are Pikas in the rock around Lake Agnes. There are many coniferous trees and mosses throughout the hike.
History & Background
Lake Agnes Tea House has been serving visitors since 1905. The building at the site today was built in 1981 using the original windows, tables, and chairs.