In search of SUP lakes surrounded by stunning mountains and dreamy blue waters?
Look no further than Moraine Lake in Banff National Park, Alberta.
Moraine Lake is a beautiful glacier fed lake located in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Boasting impressive 360-degree views and crystal blue waters, it is understandably one of the most photographed lakes in North America and arguably one of the best locations to SUP in Canada.
Picturesque paddle boarding: SUP Canada
The lake is surrounded by snow-capped mountains and trees which slope all the way down to the water’s edge. The area is known as the ‘Valley of the Ten Peaks’, referring to the ten notable mountain peaks, most of which can be viewed from the water of Moraine.
So, if you are looking for a relaxed and cruisey paddle or want to capture picture postcard pics along the way, then Moraine Lake is the SUP spot. We guarantee you will want to take your water-resistant phone case with you for this one – just be sure you have enough memory left on your phone!
Best time of year to visit
The best time to visit Moraine Lake for paddle boarding is during the summer months of June, July and August. From mid-June to July the glaciers have melted and creates a distinct shade of blue. During peak seasons, the parking lot can fill up quickly, so if you are looking for a touch of solitude, then visit the early in the morning. And, if you’re up early enough, you can capture the sun rising behind the mountain peaks that surround the lake.
The car park is situated nice and close to the water so you can easily park up, inflate your paddle board and hit the water with ease. And with the lake located just 20-minutes’ (17.3km) drive from the township Lake Louise, it easily accessible.
As lakes in Canada go, Moraine Lake is relatively small which makes it a perfect for all paddling abilities. An experienced paddler can comfortably paddle from one side to the other in approximately 30 minutes.
To protect the purity of the water here, only non-motorized vessels are permitted on the lake so just hop on your paddle board, take a deep breath and soak up the idyllic backdrop and reflections of the Ten Peaks mountains that surround you.
We recommend you wear appropriate clothing for this paddle, especially if you are planning on visiting outside of the summer months – it can get quite cold on the lake.
- .From Lake Louise township, head west on Lake Louise Dr towards Lake Louise
- .Turn left down Moraine Lake Rd
- .After 12.2 km (15minutes) you will reach the parking lot at the edge of Lake Moraine
- .Launch your board at the water’s edge (right by the main car park)
- .Paddle over to the opposite side of the lake - here you will find a small waterfall/stream, where the water trickles from the surrounding mountains into the lake – worth checking out!
Main car park on site at Moraine Lake
From main lake car park, at the water’s edge
Eat, Sleep, SUP
The town of Banff offers an amazing selection of accommodation and restaurants and is located just 1 hours’ drive from the lake. The Banff Inn, offers relaxed lodging with an awesome on-site pizzeria.
If you are visiting during the warmer seasons we highly recommend camping at Castle Mountain campground, in Lake Louise – a small, rustic campground in a beautiful wooded area.
Things to know
- As it stands, the lake is well protected by the surrounding mountains so very rarely has strong winds. The water temperature however is extremely cold and therefore swimming is not recommended. It would be a good idea to pack some warm clothing too as it tends to get extremely cold in the afternoon, especially once the sun goes down behind the mountains.
- Remember, always tell someone where and when you are going and if in doubt, don’t go out!