Lady Macdonald Teahouse Trail

HARD 226 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

muddy

rocky

scramble

2 days ago

Great workout! Beautiful hike! Highly recommended!

I did this hike yesterday and it was great! Parts of the trail are pretty dry if not dusty. There is a thin layer of snow and ice on the trail that is exposed and not protected by the trees. Higher up it's a bit deep but it has been packed down from other hikers. It's definitely doable if you have microspikes and poles. I actually thought it was easier this time then in the summer because the spikes gripped into the ground. Made for a beautiful day in the sunshine!

1 month ago

It’s steep as you hike up on a used trail along the side of the mountain and then you come to a clearing of large rocks and boulders. The trail seems to disappear. However it is clear which way to go. You get out of breath as the incline increases but at the top where the “Tea House” is the views of Canmore and the Mountains are spectacular! There is no real Tea House that you can dine at. This is a difficult slow climb and recommend for the seasoned hiker.

1 month ago

Very challenging and rewarding hike. We wore micro spikes and used poles for the snow and ice- very glad we did!
Pretty cold and windy at the top for this time of year , we only made it to the helicopter pad and back. Took almost 4.5 hours.
Legs are sore today !
Will definitely do this trail again - hoping to reach the summit in the spring/summer.

hiking
1 month ago

I spent a perfect morning hiking this awesome mountain! The weather is stunning for November. It took me around 2.5 hours to get to the teahouse.

hiking
2 months ago

Excellent day with dry conditions! We clocked 11 km and 912 metre gain to helipad! 4 hours 10 minutes with lots of breaks! Amazing hike and views! Can’t wait to come back and go up ridge !

hiking
2 months ago

Excellent day with dry conditions! We clocked 11 km and 912 metre gain to helipad! 4 hours 10 minutes with lots of breaks! Amazing hike and views! Can’t wait to come back and go up ridge !

hiking
2 months ago

Thigh burner for sure! Some snow and packed ice present, spikes and poles recommended. Got lucky and had a glorious sunshine lunch on the helipad - very little wind.

2 months ago

Did this hike yesterday with my dog, it was absolutely amazing , it was both of our first time ever really hiking in the Canadian Rockies. Amazing views on the way up and absolutely breath taking on the way down, times this one out perfectly to watch the sun setting behind the mountains. 5 hours total and that’s with stopping for multiple water and food breaks for myself and my dog.

hiking
2 months ago

Cool

2 months ago

Very beautiful hike. Definitely worth the up hill. A bit to windy for me and super cold at the helipad. would try to do again on less windy and warmer day.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a very difficult climb due to the steepness the whole way, but stunning views make it a pleasurable challenge. The trail was slippery and muddy on the top half which made descending difficult, so I'd recommend going when the weather has been dry. (I went on a warm day when melting snow made things slick).
It took me 2 hours to hike from the parking lot to the platform, stopping along the way only long enough to swig water and keep going. The way back down wasn't much faster (1 hr 45 min) due to the steep descent, mud/ice, and tricky footing. If I go again, I'd bring a lunch and take my time more. Today I just brought water. Altogether : beautiful views and a killer workout, just pick a dry day!

hiking
3 months ago

Did this hike today. Spikes and poles recommended for sure. There was alot of muddy and icy sections. this hike goes straight up to the top with no easy sections. We did make it to the top and the views were beautiful. You overlook Canmore and the surrounding mountain peaks. It took us half a day with lots of stops for rest and photo taking. The way down was very hard on the legs, and toes for us. Needless to say, I am not in superb shape and am no athlete- this hike is hard for sure but I recommend for the challenge and scenery. Don't forget to pack a lunch for the top and take it all in. Good luck :)

trail running
3 months ago

The trail head was not marked so thankfully we asked another hiker and were directed the right way early on as multiple trails use this trailhead. Head to the left side of the creek to find the single track trail. Make sure to wear appropriate footwear, especially if the trail is damp or has a bit of snow. We finished it in under 3 hours with work to the helipad and back. It was an incredible climb, taxing on the quads and calves, but with lots of great views of Canmore.

hiking
3 months ago

I don't mind admitting this was over my comfort level and physical fitness level. Got to the helipad but the trail is rated hard for a reason so do be mindful of that and be more concious of you abilities than I was. Views are amazing and the trail is easy to find all the way up. I'm going to love that I made it all the way up in a few days when my physical pain goes away! And yes, I'm a bit newbie to mountain hiking and not in top top shape... this is true! So just a heads up for others like me who want to attempt this... maybe you might want to do a few more moderate rated hikes in the mountains before doing this one. I'm from flat place in Ontario and i can do trails rated hard all day long in my area. but the rating system is so much different here in the mountains!

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike!! The trail was a little bit muddy due to some light rain but there were no issues doing the hike in just hiking shoes. Poles are recommended and there was Very Minimal snow closer to the top.
Enjoy!!

hiking
4 months 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
4 months 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!!

4 months ago

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

hiking
4 months 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
4 months 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.

4 months 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.

5 months ago

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

hiking
5 months 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!

5 months 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
5 months 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.

5 months ago

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

5 months 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
5 months ago

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

hiking
5 months 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.

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