|Subject: Re: Banff/Lake Louise - winter|
We were on one our western ski jaunts several years ago when we decided to combine business with pleasure. The business meeting took us to Calgary, Banff and Lake Louise. The people we met were downright friendly. The scenery was spectacular and far more dramatic that the lower Rockies. Then came Lake Louise. The Chateau Lake Louise was as hospitable as any of the Canadian chateaux can be. If there was a problem, it was the heat. We could not regulate it. Outside it was 30 degrees below (Fahrenheit); inside the room it had to be 90 to 100 degrees. We opened the windows wide and we settled on an average temperature in the high 70's or 80's. Nevertheless, the view across Lake Louise was terrific and I would not hesitate to return, but in the summer.
The Lake Louise ski area was something else. It was not well maintained then. The lifts were poorly maintained, every fourth or fifth seat was broken, and the trails were poorly maintained also. It was then the worst ski area I had ever visited and I had visited a good number by then. Remember this was about seven years ago. I was going to chalk it up to experience when SKI magazine ran a puff piece on the area claiming it was the third most popular area in North America. I wrote a letter to SKI suggesting that the people they interviewed were smoking something that might not be widely or legally available in the United States, but that I was willing to test some. ;-) It was about a month before the manager of the Lake Louise ski area wrote to me suggesting that it was doing everything possible to correct its maintenance problems and that if I returned I would receive skiing and lodging at no cost to see if my opinion would change. I did not return, but I was impressed that the manager would take the time to write. If you consider downhill skiing there, I would investigate the comments of other skiers who have been there recently. I suspect the management is trying to make it a great ski area, but one should investigate before one going there.
Tom in Carlisle