Lady Macdonald Teahouse Trail

HARD 205 reviews
#1 of 5 trails in

Lady Macdonald Teahouse Trail is a 8.7 kilometer moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Canmore, Alberta, Canada that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
8.7 km
ELEVATION GAIN
1,015 m
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

hiking
8 days ago

We did this hike yesterday morning, it took us 4 round trip to the helipad including lunch at the top. Nice inclined up with a few sections of steep and a boulder field cross. Views from the top are amazing, on one side you have Canmore and on the other side alpine meadow where we saw a family of grouse.
Hiking poles and boots are highly recommended.
We started hiking at 8:40 and nobody was there, we saw a whole bunch of people on the way down.

trail running
12 days ago

WHAT A GREAT HIKE ! It will challenge you because of its steep trails and the rocks but it worth it ! We did it pretty fast and didn’t take much breaks...it took us about 3h30 up and down! We went a little higher after the helipad but it was a bit beyond my limits and I didn’t want to fall ot hurt myself...we didn’t have poles and I think it could be helpful for the last part! You have to do that hike absolutely!!

16 days ago

Great aerobic hike to the helipad and scramble on for additional burn.

hiking
16 days ago

This is rated hard for a reason. It’s a continuous steep uphill hike with lots or rocks. There were lots of people hiking Lady Macdonald (we went on a Saturday long weekend).

We did the climb for 3hrs having to stop from time to time to rest and make sure our first time hiker is okay haha. The age of hikers we saw ranges from little kids to seniors so if they can do it, you most definitely can! We stopped at the helipad to eat our snacks while basking in the gorgeous views and watching others brave the ridge to reach the summit. The summit is out of my physical and mental ability.

The way down, which took us about 2hrs, was not the best. Heard lots of complaints and whines from my group saying things like “My toes hurt”, or “Ughh my knees!”, and “I hate this hike!” LOL. In the end everyone were proud of themselves. Hiking Lady Macdonald sure is a butt kicker. It’s a good work out and is definitely one of the most challenging trails we all have ever done!

hiking
21 days ago

Saw a pika and some interesting birds. Starts in forest, opens out to a pretty meadow + great view over the bow valley and all the way to Banff. Second half of the way up gets pretty steep but managed without poles. Moderately trafficked yesterday (weekday). Cold and windy up top so don’t forget your windbreaker.

28 days ago

Hiked to the helipad on Friday. Beautiful day, a nice wind to cool things down up top and the smoke wasn’t that bad. This is not a technically hard hike but is a steady incline all the way up and we had to make a couple rest stops so you do need to be in decent shape to do this. Trail is easy to follow, does branch off here and there but all lead back to the same trail. There is one section mid way in the big rocks where you feel uncertain where the trail is, look for the tall dead tree and you will see an arrow sign on it that directs you (although you can make your own path and if you just keep going up you will come to one of the trails). We did not go to the ridge, that looked a bit beyond my ability, physically and mentally-it is steep and exposed scree slope all the way up from the helipad to the ridge. With a couple rest breaks and an hour spent up top, we did this hike in 6 hours.

1 month ago

Very steep but very rewarding with a great view. Took us about 5 hours to complete

hiking
1 month ago

If you keep a reasonable pace without stopping and spend a short period at the top this hike can be completed in around 4 hours.

Cougar Creek parking is always free and open. Trail is easy to find but there are several ways up and down - just keep moving because they all meet up.

Ascent is steep but rewarding and the view is fantastic.

The descent is not as enjoyable unless you bring walking poles or you descent at a faster rate!

1 month ago

Very steep switchbacks makes for a difficult, but very rewarding hike. It took us about 3 hours to get to the helipad on a hot day, when we were stopping a lot with a thirsty dog (and some tired hikers haha). I would not recommend this hike for beginners or those who are not in decent physical shape. Bring lots of water!

Beautiful views of a meadow and some wildflowers along the way and we saw a mountain goat, as well.

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing views of Canmore and the Bow Valley. It is possible to hike all the way up to the summit ridge. The trail is quite easy to follow up to the tree line after which it can be difficult to keep track The slope to the ridge is covered with loose scree and the ridge itself is very exposed so not for the faint of heart or those who fear heights.

1 month ago

Great hike, quite steep. Hiked 11 km with an altitude gain of 900-1000 meters

1 month ago

Great workout!! Pass through forest, boulders and scree to get to the summit. Alpine meadows are a beautiful sight - lush green with wildflowers, and we saw mountain goats in one. Some scrambling past the heli-pad. Stellar views at the first summit, which is where we stopped.

hiking
1 month ago

Rated hard for a reason, but it does worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

amazing view at the top, kinda hard to scrambling after the teahouse area but it worth it when you reach the summit. the best time to go when is sunny day for safety reason.

hiking
1 month ago

Good challenging hike with rewarding views. My husband and I did this today. We are both 61. 5 hours up and back plus lunch at the helipad. Well worth it!

hiking
2 months ago

Rated hard.. it mean it. Not for average joe Doe.!! Make sure you are physically fit for this hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Lady Macdonald is a tough hike and not for the faint of heart. It is tougher than Ha Ling Peak because you are going uphill continually. The slope can be quite steep at times and towards the upper half, there are lots of boulders and rocks. If you’re young it’s not a big deal but my husband and I are both over 55 so it’s tougher to balance. Walking sticks for our age is a must with good hiking boots. The distance was over 11 km and took us about 5 1/2 hrs. Coming downhill is tough on the knees and again the sticks really help. Make sure to wear a hat and use sunscreen if sunny. Despite it being partly in the woods, much of the trail is very sunny. Getting to the helipad was worth it though. The view was great and we sat there to eat our packed lunch. You can continue onto the summit but that would like take another hour. And it’s all shale at that point. It’s worth going at least once just so you can say you’ve done it.

2 months ago

Unbelievable views from the ridge. The first 2 hours will kick your ass but well worth every minute. Didn’t use trecking poles but would suggest since the decent can be hard on the knees. Scramble to the true summit was difficult but none less worth it. Lots of loose gravel and would reccomend hiking boots.The ridge walk kicks starts your heart but can be tricky when it’s windy. Moderately trafficked trail with unreal views. By far the hardest hike I’ve done for the first one of the season but well worth it.

hiking
2 months ago

I hiked with two full grown children in six hours yesterday. Was a little daunting at first but once you get going it’s a lot of fun. Super hard and my books but definitely worth it in the end. And the kudos for my kids didn’t hurt either. Bring more water than you think you need as you work up a really good sweat.

hiking
2 months ago

This was an enjoyable hike. Did this with 3 other ladies and it took us 4 hours with a 20 min lunch at the heli pad. A bit of snow flurries and lots of wind. We would have loved to go the ridge but with the wind we were a bit unsettled. Very happy for my poles!
This was the final hike for our Canmore triple crown so we went into the Georgetown inn and got a free Diet Coke (we don’t drink beer) and ordered our triple crown t shirt.

2 months ago

Would do it again. Ridge not for the faint of heart.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Great workout , almost easy to remain on the trail ( could go off course sometimes so this App ended up very useful ) . Need gloves because scrambling is inevitable . Almost NO litter along the trail which makes it a gem . Allow yourself the whole day unless you are young and an athlete . My poles were VERY useful too .

hiking
3 months ago

Tough uphill slog the whole way but really enjoyed it. Stopped at helipad, views across to Ha Ling and EEOR are pretty cool

3 months ago

Not a technical hike, but it is a long.
DO NOT stop at the helipad. Stop, catch your breathe and grab a bite to eat, then put your head down and keep putting 1 foot in front of the other!
Great views from the top.
The knife edge I found not to be very difficult. Good sturdy rocks for your feet and hands.
I lack a certain fear of heights though. It's not for those that aren't ready to conquer that fear.

hiking
3 months ago

Knew I didn’t want to summit so I stayed at the platform (800m elevation gain) and waited for my friend to summit (1200m elevation). Lots of other people were doing the same thing. Lots of people went from tree line to skyline but lost their nerve to get to the true summit. Steep yet stable trail to tree line. Expect scree and scrambles and a narrow ridge for the summit.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a really tough trail for beginners. The first 2 hours are absolutely awful. The view is beautiful at the top but coming from the prairies with little hiking opportunities, this was really hard.

hiking
3 months ago

Did this one in the rain and it just kicked my ass the whole way up and most of the way down. 95% of the trail is quite steep and there is a section with large boulders that requires hands as well as a challenging 15-30min scramble at the top. I went on may 17 and there was essentially no snow on the trail aside from some trace amounts near the helipad. I wouldn't recommend doing this trail in the rain as it's steepness was hard on the knees and made for a slippery decent on which i slipped in the mud atleast 3 times on the way down. Despite this I loved the hike, there was an especially beautiful section with a ridge looking over some plainlike hills just before helipad in addition to many great views along the way.

PS. there was a some odd bird along the path that had a pulsating "opening" on it's neck that was white on the edge and red in the centre, its nest was nearby so I stayed back and just took pictures but overall pretty neat

3 months ago

This was a real muscle killer but a beautiful hike and definitely worth doing! Last year we did this later in the season but this year it was our second hike, so we weren’t in shape yet and the ascent was long and steep. At the top there are 3 beautiful false summits and one beautiful real sunny with some tricky scrambling to get to. Totally worth it though! The descent is much easier with poles!

4 months ago

A very steep trail the whole way up with little to no flat sections and some minimal bolder climbing. I climbed to the helicopter pad in 2 hours. The views were amazing and the trail was the perfect length for a nice afternoon hike. the distance from Canmore made this trial very convenient. I definitely recommend this trail to travellers staying in Canmore.

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