Victoria Glacier

Victoria Glacier lies at the head of Lake Louise and is one of the most widely photographed glaciers. Lake Louise is dammed by an early Holocene moraine formed by Victoria glacier; it probably formed during the Eisenhowever Junction glaciation, some 10,000 years ago. Visible as the magnificent backdrop of Lake Louise,

Lake Louise is fed by glacial runoff from Victoria Glacier. Like many of the lakes in the Rockies the water is either deep green or blue. This is caused by fine sediments called “rock flour” floating in the water. Rock flour is fine powdery rock that has been crushed and ground by a glacier. Lake Louise is a beautiful green color.

Those wishing for a close-up view of Victoria Glacier can hike the Plain of Six Glaciers trail for about 1.6 km past the Teahouse of the same name. There may be huge crowds at the start of the trail but the scenery is so good that if you can bear it, I think it’s something you can be forgiven for hiking just once in your life.

The valley glacier is fed almost entirely by avalanches coming off the mountains, though Abbot Pass also contributes a small amount of snow. It is difficult to determine exactly where the Victoria Glacier terminates, as its toe is completely covered by a layer of rock and rubble. This is in sharp contrast to the Athabasca and other glaciers whose clean tongues are clearly apparent.

Click here for a larger photo.

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