Mt. Louie

  • Description

    This impressive dog-toothed spire of limestone is located in the Sawback mountain range near Banff, AB. The peak is challenging from all sides, especially the east side where the Diamond Face is located. The Diamond Face is a beautiful diamond shaped flake of rock that stands near vertical, catches the morning’s alpen glow, can be seen from the Trans Canada Highway, and hosts Sonnie Trotter and Tommy Caldwell’s mind blowing 15-pitch multi-pitch rock route- The Shinning. Additional attention was given to Mt. Louise way back on July 19th, 1916, when the famous Austrian mountain guide, Conrad Kain, led his guest (Albert MacCarthy) to it summit via the SE Face. This ascent rocked to mountain world as it was an impressive feat that was way ahead of its time. The SE Face, or better known Kain Route, continues to challenge modern climbers and will be described below, along with a couple other commonly guided routes.

    • Kain Route (SE Face), (III 5.7). Famous, popular, and a ton of fun. If you like a challenge, beautiful views, moving fast, and have multi-pitch climbing experience, then this route is for you. The Kain route up Louie is a long, great route that includes lots of 4th and 5th class climbing that is sure to get you excited. It’s a must do.
    • Gmoser Route (III 5.9). This quality route follows a slightly more direct and challenging line than the Kain Route, and ties into the Kain Route around P9 where it has its mid-route rappel and traverses left. The climbing is another fabulous route that’s a must do.
    • Homage to the Spider (III 5.10a). If you want to step the climbing grade up a bit then this route may be for you. It’s touted as being the best route up the mountain, as it follows an aesthetic corner system up the north side of the mountain. All of these highlighted routes are awesome all well worth their efforts.
  • Grade

  • Duration

  • Aspect

  • Length

    8'799 / 2682m

  • Max Guiding Ratio

  • Directions

    From Canmore, drive ≈ 29km west on Hwy. 1 and park along the road just west of Banff.
  • Approach

    Use the Cory Pass Trail to hike to the base of Mt. Louie which takes  approx. 2.5 to 3hr and covers ≈ 5.5km (one-way) with 900m of elevation gain.

  • Descent

    10 fixed station rappels from near the summit leads to a loose climber’s descent trail that is used to return via the Cory Pass Trail.

  • Routes Nearby

Want to climb this route?

    Your Name*


    Phone Number*

    Your Message