Ross Lake Bike Trail
The popular destination of Lake Louise sees extreme amounts of crowds, but rarely anyone on a bike. Riding the Ross Lake Trail is a great way to explore the area, cross the Great Divide, and enjoy some new scenery without numerous tour buses crowding your photo opportunity.
View Ross Lake Bike Trail on Map
- Map Data: ©OpenStreetMap
- Tiles: ©CyclOSM
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Route Description for Ross Lake Bike Trail
The Ross Lake Trail takes cyclists into a quiet and remote area that doesn’t see many visitors; however, it begins at the crowded Lake Louise. You will want to start your trip early in the morning to avoid full parking lots and traffic disasters.
We love the Ross Lake trail because it is one of the few trails in Lake Louise that really escapes the crowds. You will get to cross the Great Divide and enter British Columbia on the trail before returning to Alberta.
Beginning at the Lake Louise parking lot, walk your bike towards the lake following signs to the lakeshore. Take time to get your photos before it gets too crowded. Lake Louise shows off a pristine turquoise colour that seems otherworldly in any lighting. The colour of the water intensifies as the sun shines on it, so try to catch the lake on a bright day.
Head to the right of the lake with your bike passing the Chateau Fairmont Lake Louise and take your first right after the hotel. Follow signs for Ross Lake and watch out for confusing cross-country ski signs all over the trees. You will feel as though you are wrapping around the building trending right before joining the main trail.
Travel 7.1 km on the trail through the woods, catching glimpses of views as you ride along. Here you will pass a junction for Divide Mountain. Continue for 300 m to pristine Ross Lake. You are now in B.C., along the Great Divide. Take in the views around the stunning lake as peaks rise above. Some trails lead away north of the lake to scramble routes surrounding the area. From the edge of the lake, you will need to take the trail to the right to continue on your loop.
From the trail, leaving right, travel 1.1 km to where you will meet the Old Highway 1A. The now-defunct road leads left to meet the Lake O'hara Road in Yoho National Park or right to Lake Louise, where you will be headed. This highway was the original road that cars used when the park was first open for visitors with vehicles. There is some wonderful history here, and you will be able to cross under the incredible historic Great Divide sign that makes for a great photo opportunity.
Travel along the old highway into Alberta for 6.4 km before reaching a small trail to the left. Stay on the main trail for 300 m, where you will join the Tramline Trail and take a right. Follow the Tramline for 300 m again before reaching the parking lot in which you started.
This loop can be done in either direction; however, we enjoy doing it this way. You will be able to see Lake Louise in the beginning before it gets too busy and enjoy your quiet trail for the rest of the trip. Avid cyclists may start in the Lake Louise Village and take the Tramline trail up to join the Ross Lake Loop to add some elevation and distance to the day.
Insider Hints for Ross Lake Bike Trail
- Extend the trip by joining the Tramline Trail in the Village of Lake Louise
- Grab lunch from Laggan’s Bakery in the village to pack for a picnic on your route
- Go early to avoid crowds and parking
- Book a night at the Lake Louise Campground and explore multiple trails during your stay
Getting to the Ross Lake Bike Trail Trailhead
From the Village of Lake Louise, take Lake Louise Drive towards the lake. Make your way through the four-way stop and continue uphill passing hotels and lodges along the way. When you reach the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, turn left into the public parking lot and park here.
Ross Lake Bike Trail Elevation Graph
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Ross Lake Bike Trail Reviews
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