"Turquoise Water" Moraine Lake/ Valley of Ten Peaks Tip by Bwana_Brown

  Unreal Colour
by Bwana_Brown

There are a number of nice walking trails in the Moraine Lake area (check out VT-member 'Windsorgirl' for some excellent tips on these for the whole Park) but we had neither the time nor equipment to undertake anything even remotely serious. As a result, we took the easiest one, a half-hour walk each way to the end of the lake where the glacial water flows in from the peaks above.

If you are wondering why this Lake (and others in Banff NP) are so vividly blue, the answer lies in the fine particles of glacial silt that are washed down off the mountains and into the waters during the spring/summer melt. This silt has a mineral characteristic that absorbs all colours of the incoming sunlight except the blue-green spectrum, resulting in the world famous appearance of these lakes. If you view them early on in the year, after the ice has melted, they will appear to be more nomal looking since the silt has not yet flowed into the lakes in great quantity.

Address: 15 km off main road #93
Directions: Situated in the Valley of the Ten Peaks, at 6,183 feet.
Phone: 403-522-3733
Website: http://www.albertawow.com/hikes/Moraine_Lake/Moraine_Lake.htm

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Oct 6, 2004
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Comments (1)

  • MalenaN's Profile Photo
    Feb 4, 2014 at 9:59 AM

    The water has such a beautiful colour!

    • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
      Feb 4, 2014 at 4:39 PM

      Yes, it certainly does look like something out of this world. I have never seen another lake with colour like it in all my global wanderings!


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