My arrival in Lake Louise started with a bit of a surprise. I’d been expecting to move into Lake Louise’s Charleston residence (know locally as the infamous Chuck Town) however on arrival I was told I would be housed somewhere called “GDL”. Confusion turned to dread as I was asked if I had a car, and upon saying no, being told that someone would “drive me out there”. I felt like I was being sent to a tiny isolated cabin in the middle of nowhere! This dread soon melted away as I arrived at the Great Divide Lodge, a small hotel that sits on the Trans-Canada Highway, just inside BC.
While the lodge is kind of isolated, it is exactly what I was looking for in accommodation: Not super loud, cosy, free laundry, free internet, and free tea! Lake Louise resort has completely taken over the hotel for staff accommodation, and I was also told on arrival that I’d lucked out and was one of few people in the place that was sharing a room with just 1 other person, as apposed to bunk rooms with up to 4 people in the same amount of space!
I would be sharing my room with Phillipe, an experienced ski guide/instructor from Quebec, who has just started to become a heli-ski guide! (lucky bastard!). Hopefully we’re going to do some back country trips, and I’ll get at least 1 day of heli boarding in!
I’m working at Lake Louise as a Mountain Greeter. It’s not quite the ride break-fest that being a Lifty is, but there should be opportunities to ride during the day, and I get the chance to make a little extra money in the form of rewards for catching people trying to sneak into the resort on fake tickets!
By the fifth day of being in town I was positively itching to get on the mountain, and as soon as I had my pass I was out hitting the groomers a much as possible.
The main difference I’ve noticed between here and Whistler so far are the temperatures. Lake Louise is much further inland than Whistler, making it colder and drier. The risk of frostbite when riding in -20 to -40 degree temps is very real and I got caught out a little around my goggles on the first couple of days. Good face coverage is a must here.
Cold temps mean lots of snow though, and that famous fluffy, light, interior snow is starting to pile up!