Moraine Lake is only half the size of its neighbour just a 15-minute drive away, Lake Louise. But it’s still a hugely popular destination for hikers, families, kayakers, photographers and most importantly, wedding photos!
The lake has become a world-renowned beauty spot thanks to the soaring mountains and spectacular aquamarine water. So if you’re thinking about Moraine Lake wedding photos, we couldn’t recommend a prettier spot.
Elevation: 6,181 feet (1,884 metres)
Surface Area: 50 hectares (120 acres)
Maximum Depth: 45.9 feet (14 metres)
Location: 8.7 miles (14km) from Lake Louise village in Banff National Park
Nestled in the Valley of the Ten Peaks, Moraine Lake is glacially fed, which is partly how it gets that distinctive azure shade of blue. When the glaciers around the lake melt, they deposit rock flour into the lake, too. The light refracts off the rock flour and generates the lake’s famous aquamarine colour. As the glaciers melt in the heat, the lake is fullest around June and the summer sun sparkles beautifully off the surface.
So if you’re looking to capture that startling shade as the backdrop to your Moraine Lake wedding photos, be sure to aim for a time between late June and August to avoid disappointment.
If you’re an adventurous couple or you just want the opportunity to take in some famous Rocky Mountain natural beauty on your wedding day, Moraine Lake is the perfect spot.
You can walk the lakeshore quite easily or take some of the easier nearby trails to add some variety to your wedding portraits.
One of the most popular trails is known as The Rockpile Trail which offers arguably the best view of the lake. As you can see below, it makes for some beautiful photos without being too hard on a white dress!
The view from the top of The Rockpile is one of the most photographed locations in all of Canada. It’s known as the “Twenty Dollar View” because it appeared on the reverse side of the Canadian twenty dollar bill in both 1969 and 1979.
Want to take the adventure a little further? Try the Consolation Lakes trail which starts from the same trailhead. This trail is about 1.9 miles (3km) long with the elevation change coming in around 300 feet (90 metres).
While the sparkling blue water might be the main draw for Moraine Lake wedding photos, the area has lots of other beauty to offer, too.
During the Larch season (usually the second or third week in September) the trees in Larch Valley start to turn into a gorgeous golden colour. Hikers travel from all over to enjoy the sight while walking the local trails. It’s a great time of year to capture two natural beauty features that Moraine Lake is known for: the blue water and the golden larch trees.
You might want to plan your photos mid-week if possible during this time – the location’s popularity means it can get pretty crowded!
The best thing about Moraine Lake wedding photos is that the area offers something for every couple. Not into walking or keen to preserve your precious dress? Just relax and enjoy the view!
Want to make a fun activity out of your photo shoot? Hike the trails and enjoy the fresh air and unparalleled beauty of the Valley of Ten Peaks!
If you’re spending a few days in the region for your wedding, we also highly recommend taking the opportunity to go kayaking as well. There’s no more peaceful spot in the world than right in the centre of that beautiful blue water surrounded by mountain peaks.
Like most places of immense natural beauty, Moraine Lake is a super popular spot. That means parking is limited and you have to pick your moment to make sure you can capture the Moraine Lake wedding photos of your dreams.
The best way to make sure everything goes to plan? Hire a photographer local to the area. There are a few reasons you’ll be thankful that you did:
Local Banff and Lake Louise photographers know their stuff. And that includes where to go to find the best views with as few interruptions as possible. Not only will you have a magical and peaceful time during your shoot, you’ll have some truly unique Moraine Lake wedding photos!
It comes with the territory, but Moraine Lake photographers live to hike the areas around Banff National Park. It’s how they capture such incredible shots! So if you’re on the adventurous side, you can be sure your local photographer will be, too.
When it comes to destination weddings, you’re in a bit of a blind spot. It can be tricky to work out schedules when you haven’t travelled around the area before.
However, your local photographer knows exactly how long it takes to travel between Moraine Lake and your reception venue, how long the photos will take, and potential pitfalls.
For example, sometimes the routes are highly restricted due to things like bear activity. With a photographer from home, you may struggle to find alternatives. With a local photographer, they’ll have multiple back-up plans at the ready!
Did you know you need special permits to shoot photographs in Banff National Park? Lots of couples don’t even think about it. And why would you if your photographer is local? They’ll have all the relevant paperwork taken care of so all you have to do is show up!
If you’re hoping to capture some memorable Moraine Lake wedding photos, check out our list of carefully selected local photographers.
All photographs by Steven Wallace Photography.