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Saddleback Trail

Easy/Intermediate
 3.6 (5)

This is a moderate trail from the Lake Louise parking area to the shoulder between Saddle Peak and Fairview Mountain.


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Map Key

2.3

Miles

3.7

KM

Point to Point

7,759' 2,365 m

High

5,786' 1,763 m

Low

1,973' 601 m

Up

0' 0 m

Down

16%

Avg Grade (9°)

42%

Max Grade (23°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Views

Trails can close due to bear activity so have back up plans (and carry bear spray).

Description

The trail begins from the parking areas for Lake Louise on the northeastern end of the lake. This trail heads south and gets less traffic than the hikes to the Plain of Six Glaciers Trail.

Finding the beginning of the trail can be a little tricky due to the mess of trails at the beginning/connecting the parking areas together. Look for the Fairview Lookout Trail to help find this one. After a few hundred feet the lookout trail with branch off to the southwest. A bit further, the mixed use trail that connects Lake Louise to Moraine Lake will branch off to the east.

Continue south on the Saddleback Trail to start gaining some steady elevation. This first part of the trail isn't too special - you're in thick woods so you don't have great views - but it is well-maintained and not too steep. Eventually, you'll be rewarded with the first real views from the trail in a large old avalanche clearing. You'll be able to see Fairview Mountain to the southeast and the Bow River Valley to the north.

The trail remains clear until a small branch deep in the woods. You can actually go either route: straight ahead will continue on the main Saddleback Trail and the route to the right is a much steeper shortcut trail that links back up with Saddleback trail in the next large avalanche clearing.

Continue gaining ground as the trees thin out and views get better. The trail is still clear and well-built as you pass though some boulder fields. After a few switchbacks, the trail will level out on the shoulder between Fairview Mountain and Saddle Peak.

From here, you can get great views of Mount Temple, continue down into Paradise Valley, climb to the top of Fairview Mountain, or head back down to Lake Louise.

Contacts

Shared By:

Karl W

Trail Ratings

  3.6 from 5 votes

#8

in Lake Louise

#18628

Overall
  3.6 from 5 votes
5 Star
40%
4 Star
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3 Star
40%
2 Star
20%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#8

in Lake Louise

#88

in Alberta

#18,628

Overall
345 Views Last Month
8,467 Since Feb 26, 2017
Easy/Intermediate

40%
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Photos

We had less than ideal weather on the Saddleback Trail, but it was still a nice hike!
Feb 26, 2017 near Lake Lo…, AB
A storm rolls through the valley below the Saddleback Trail.
Mar 10, 2017 near Lake Lo…, AB
A ptarmigan stands right next to the trail on a wet morning.
Feb 26, 2017 near Lake Lo…, AB
Enjoy phenomenal views of Sheol Mountain and Haddo Peak at the junction of the Saddleback Mountain Trail and Fairview Mountain Trail.
Mar 10, 2017 near Lake Lo…, AB

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Check-Ins

Aug 8, 2019
Etienne Tourigny
Sep 29, 2018
Damir Jašarević
The hike was good, but lots of ice patches, some snow and mud. — 1h 22m
Jul 19, 2018
Andy Markevicus
4.6mi
Oct 28, 2017
Emily Hook
Sep 7, 2017
bram smets
Sep 8, 2016
Karl W