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Hiking Twin Falls | Yoho National Park

Hiking Twin Falls | Yoho National Park

Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd During our first visit to Canada in the summer of 2016, Julie and I made a brief stop in Yoho National Park. The highlight of that quick stop was Takkakaw Falls, the stunning 830 foot waterfall […]

Columbia Icefield Tour: Athabasca Glacier Hike

Columbia Icefield Tour: Athabasca Glacier Hike

Words and Photos by Julie Boyd The first time I stood at the base of Athabasca Glacier was an unforgettable experience. To be in the presence of an ancient piece of ice is humbling, and to know that in my lifetime it will disappear is […]

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail | Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

Eiffel Lake is a hidden gem in the Moraine Lake region of Banff National Park. This is a popular trail leads to an alpine lake with gorgeous views of the Valley of the Ten Peaks along the way.

A moderate hike, you can expect most of the elevation gain during the first half of the hike before being rewarded for your efforts with views of the incredible Eiffel Lake.


Eiffel Lake Trail: Hike Details

Starting Elevation: 5,860 ft.

Distance: 7.67 miles

Elevation Gain: 1,345 ft.

Hike Type: Out and back, day-hike

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Permit: None required for day hiking

Date Hiked: July 24, 2019


Getting to the Trailhead

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

The hike to Eiffel Lake begins on the eastern shoreline of Moraine Lake as part of the Larch Valley trail. Moraine Lake is a popular destination within Banff National Park, and is 20 minutes from the Lake Louise Visitor Center, and an hour north of Banff.

From the town of Banff, take the Trans-Canada Highway (AB-1 W) for 55 kilometers (35 miles) and take the Bow Valley Parkway exit, following signs to Lake Louise. Continue to Moraine Lake Road, which you will then drive for 15 kilometers (9 miles) to Moraine Lake.

Because Moraine Lake is a highly popular destination, it’s important to get as early a start as possible. The road leading to Moraine Lake is closed periodically due to the parking lot being full. If the lot, is full in the morning, consider arriving later in the day after the first wave of visitors has left. On our trip we heard from others that the lot fills up by 6:30 a.m. with those who arrive early to capture sunrise. On this trip we arrived later in the morning, around 8:30 a.m., and were able to find parking.

Once you arrive at Moraine Lake, park in the main lot and walk towards Moraine Lake Lodge where you will pick up the Larch Valley Trail.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks to Eiffel Lake

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Starting on the Larch Valley Trail, the hike to Eiffel Lake begins to climb from the moment your boots hit the dirt. It’s a steady incline through a lush forest as you switchback your way up. During our visit, the weather was not on our side as a light, but steady rainfall kept us wet throughout our hike. Julie and I remarked several times that we should have done the hike one day earlier when the sun was out and temperatures were around 80 degrees. The mountains can be funny like that; great weather one day and crummy weather the next.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Around the two mile mark, we reached the junction for Eiffel Lake and Larch Valley/Sentinel Pass. If the weather had been better, we would have loved to also hike Sentinel Pass, but we’ll save that for another trip. At this point, we had taken several breaks as we contemplated whether or not it would be worthwhile to continue hiking. We figured at the very least, we would get to the junction and then decide from there, based on how much we were getting rained on. Once there, we had a snack and chatted with some other hikers who were intent on going up to Sentinel Pass, but were hoping for an improvement in the weather. Ultimately, after a short break, we decided to push on and get as close as we could to Eiffel Lake.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

The nice part about the second half of the hike to Eiffel Lake is that it is almost entirely flat. You do about 1,000 feet of gain in the first couple of miles, and very little the rest of the way. This makes the hike much more manageable, particularly since we were getting consistently rained on throughout. As we continued along the trail, the wildflowers were out in full force and helped brighten our spirits up a bit. We caught some nice views of the end of a bright, turquoise-blue Moraine Lake as we got further along the trail.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Eventually, as we neared Eiffel Lake, the trees began to fade away and it almost felt like we had stepped onto another planet. We were greeted by a sparse, rocky landscape and rain clouds hugging the peaks that sat just above Eiffel Lake. Unlike Moraine Lake, which is famous for being a brighter blue, Eiffel Lake is a dark blue that almost felt like the color of the ocean. Nestled at the base of snowy mountains, the lake was a welcome sight after spending the past couple of hours getting rained on. We stopped to snap a few photos and enjoy the solitude of being the only ones at the lake before we were ready to turn and head back. While Eiffel Lake is beautiful, there is no clear trail that leads to its lake shore, and we were certainly not of the mindset to try and climb down any slippery rocks in the rain.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

The return hike was an easy one, as we quickly retraced our steps, anxious to get back to the car. We took a few breaks for photos, but as the rain was never really nice enough to let up for us, there wasn’t much to shoot. At the junction, we saw some of the same hikers we had chatted with on the way up, and they were deciding to call it a day and head to Sentinel Pass in the morning. We wished them well and made our way back down the Larch Valley trail.

Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail

Eiffel Lake was a nice day-trip, hindered only by the late-July rain. We definitely recommend the hike if you’re looking to explore a little more of the Moraine Lake area!


Check out these other awesome Banff hikes:

Hiking to Moraine & Consolation Lakes

Hiking to Lake Agnes & the Big Beehive

Peyto Lake Hike to the Bottom

Exploring Johnston Canyon

Lake Louise & Hiking Plain of the Six Glaciers


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Hiking The Valley of Ten Peaks: Eiffel Lake Trail


Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you place an order after clicking through those links, Brian and I get a small commission (this does not cost you anything extra!). This is not a sponsored post, all of the gear we mention was purchased by us, and all opinions are our own.


 

Backpacking Big Pine Lakes | Temple Crag

Backpacking Big Pine Lakes | Temple Crag

Backpacking  to Big Pine Lakes| Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Hiking to Big Pine Lakes via the North Fork Trail of Big Pine Creek is a classic trip in the Eastern Sierra. This strenuous trail can be done as a long […]

Hiking Vernal and Nevada Falls | Yosemite National Park

Hiking Vernal and Nevada Falls | Yosemite National Park

Hiking Vernal and Nevada Falls| Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd One of the premier hikes starting from Yosemite Valley, the hike to Vernal and Nevada Falls is a must-do when visiting the park. An incredibly popular trail thanks to its access […]

Hiking Berry Creek Falls | Big Basin Waterfall Hike

Hiking Berry Creek Falls | Big Basin Waterfall Hike

Big Basin Waterfall Hike| Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

Berry Creek Falls is a hidden gem nestled within Big Basin Redwood State Park in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Hiking to the falls is the most popular activity in the park, so expect crowds to be high on a summer day. The redwoods provide the ideal backdrop for this waterfall hike, as you’ll be provided with plenty of shade along the way.

If you’re looking for a great day-hike in the South Bay area, Berry Creek Falls should be on your list!

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A Scenic Drive Through Monument Valley | Arizona

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Monument Valley is an iconic destination in the heart of the American Southwest. Chances are if you have seen an old Western film, Forrest Gump, Westworld, or any number of other movies, then you know Monument […]

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd In what has quickly become an annual tradition, Julie and I hit the road at the end of December in search of adventures in the Southwest. With winter weather making most of our favorite destinations either […]

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

The hike to Devil’s Bridge in Sedona is a popular, short excursion that leads to a heavily photographed natural bridge. An arch formed below the bridge, is the largest naturally occurring one of it’s kind in Sedona. Located just twenty minutes outside of Sedona, and surrounded by beautiful red rocks, this is a must-visit hike!

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Summer Hiking Gear: Our Recommendations

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Written By Julie Boyd and Brian Callender We often get asked about the gear we bring along on our hikes, so we decided to put together a comprehensive list of our favorites for summer hiking. We hope you will find this guide helpful in planning […]

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Little Lakes Valley sits just 45 minutes south of Mammoth and 50 minutes north of Bishop in the Eastern Sierra. This day hike quickly became one of our absolute favorites thanks to a collection of pristine […]

Hiking to Heart Lake | Mount Shasta California

Hiking to Heart Lake | Mount Shasta California

Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

In February, Julie and I set out to hike Castle Dome in Castle Crags State Park, and it quickly became one of our favorite hikes to date.

At the tail end of that day, we made a hurried attempt to reach Heart Lake, near Mount Shasta. With the winter sun quickly setting, our efforts to reach the lake through a snow covered trail fell just short. The views we reached that day were nevertheless incredible, and we were eager to return and make a second attempt to reach Heart Lake when the snow had melted and the trail was easier to follow. By July, we found ourselves back in Redding to visit Lassen Volcanic National Park and knew we had to make some extra time to revisit Heart Lake.

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Hiking Lassen Peak | Lassen Volcanic National Park

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Lassen Volcanic National Park, and a hike to its namesake peak, has been at the top of our list of places to visit in California for quite some time. Julie and I toyed with the idea […]

A Weekend Road Trip to Redding & the Shasta Cascade Region

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Since moving to Northern California in early 2017, the opportunity for new adventures has remained a constant in our lives. We push ourselves to take advantage of every weekend opportunity to explore our ever-growing list of […]

Hiking to Upper Gaylor Lakes | Yosemite National Park

Hiking to Upper Gaylor Lakes | Yosemite National Park

Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

Gaylor Lakes, a short hike accessible from the Tioga Road in Yosemite, had been on our to-do list for some time. We had planned to do an overnight backpacking trip to Vogelsang, and found Gaylor Lakes to be a great option for a day hike on the day we picked up our permits. The trail is short, just three miles roundtrip, but starts at an elevation of 9,960 feet, which makes the hike a bit more challenging. Doing this hike the same day as coming from sea-level meant we moved at a slower pace, as we worked to acclimate to the elevation.

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2018 In Review – The Year of Weekend Road Trips

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd After the life-changing year we had in 2017, with getting married and moving away from our childhood homes, 2018 was significantly more laid back. We once again stayed exclusively in North America, marking our second straight […]

Our Anniversary Trip | Visit Mount Rainier National Park

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd When best laid plans fall through, improvisation is the spice of life. For a couple months leading up to our first wedding anniversary, Julie and I had been working through ideas of where we would be […]

Gift Ideas For Adventure Travelers

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Written by Julie Boyd

The holiday season is officially upon us, filled with family, friends, and lots of food! Inevitably, we find ourselves in search of the perfect gift, and if you’re like us, that can often be a challenge. This year, we decided to put together a list of some of our favorite items that we love to use for our adventures. We hope you find something useful and if you have any tips, we would be excited to hear about them.

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Hiking to Wapta Falls | Yoho National Park

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd It’s our second to last full day in Canada, and Julie and I are trying to decide what we want to spend it doing. Much of the trip has been a bit different than we had […]

Peyto Lake Hike to the Bottom | Banff National Park

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd The first time Julie and I laid eyes on Peyto Lake in person, we were blown away. Like so many of the lakes in the Canadian Rockies, the striking blue water is captivating. Is the water […]

Hiking to Lake Agnes & the Big Beehive | Banff National Park

Hiking to Lake Agnes & the Big Beehive | Banff National Park

Big Beehive Hike| Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

The Lake Agnes and Big Beehive hike is one of our favorites in Banff National Park. Alpine vistas, quiet pine forests, and a lakeside tea house make this adventure unforgettable.

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Hiking to Moraine & Consolation Lakes | Banff National Park

Hiking to Moraine & Consolation Lakes | Banff National Park

Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd Have you ever visited a place so magical that it captures your heart and makes you want return over and over again? For Julie and I, one such place is Moraine Lake in Banff National Park. […]

Hiking Joffre Lakes | British Columbia

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd One of the central appeals to staying in Vancouver, when planning our trip, was its close proximity to outdoor activities. As much as we enjoy visiting a new city, we find ourselves eager to get outside […]

Planning A Road Trip from Vancouver to Banff

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Road Trip from Vancouver to Banff | Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

In 2016, Julie and I took our first trip to Canada, spending a week exploring Banff and Jasper National Parks. After seeing a seemingly endless stream of photos of Alberta on social media, we were inspired to visit and explore this land of lakes and mountains for ourselves.

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Hiking Mission Peak | Bay Area California

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Written by Julie Boyd | Photography by Julie Boyd One of the things I miss the most about living in Southern California is the proximity to high altitude hikes in the San Gabriel Mountains. Sure, living in the Bay Area means that Brian and I […]

A Weekend Road Trip to Redwood National and State Parks

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd One of our favorite things about living in a different part of the state is the abundance of new opportunities for adventure. For the past year, Julie and I have done our very best to take […]

Day Trip to Big Sur | California

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Written by Julie Boyd | Photography by Julie Boyd

Earlier this month Brian and I had a free weekend, so we decided to take a day trip to Big Sur since it is so close to our home in San Jose. Even though we have been to Big Sur several times in the past, we still felt like there were a few nooks and crannies left to explore. Plus there are definitely no shortage of beautiful locations that we wouldn’t mind seeing again. On an overcast Saturday morning, we headed out with a plan to drive down to Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, and then work our way back up the coast.  (more…)

Hiking Mt. Tallac | Lake Tahoe, CA

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Written by Julie Boyd | Photography by Julie Boyd When we arrived in Lake Tahoe, I gazed at the snowy peaks and knew immediately that our plan to hike Mt. Tallac would have to be saved for another trip. The snow level seemed pretty low, […]

Glacier Point Hike to Sentinel Dome and Taft Point | Yosemite National Park

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Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd & Brian Callender Working full-time jobs means we live for the weekend, and more importantly, our weekend adventures. In the little over one year that we have lived in Northern California, we have made every effort […]

Yosemite Falls Hike to the Top in Winter | Yosemite National Park

Yosemite Falls Hike to the Top in Winter | Yosemite National Park

Yosemite Falls Hike to the Top| Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd

Yosemite is a magical place to visit anytime of year, but there’s something extra special about seeing the famous granite covered in a fresh layer of snow.

Perhaps that lends some explanation to the fact that three of our four visits there have been in winter. It’s also a good opportunity to avoid the summer crowds that overflow throughout the valley during the park’s peak season.

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