Wanted: Hikable summits in Banff

8:56 a.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

I'm planning a trip to Banff this September, and am interested in peaks that I can summit without the use of ropes. Are any of the peaks that are accessable from the Abbot Pass Hut hikable (Mt Lefroy, Mt Huber)? Also, is it possible to hike from Lake O'Hara to Lake Louise over Abbot Pass?

Thanks

9:15 a.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Lefroy involves Glacier travel, not sure about Huber (havent got the guidebook handy). Your best bet is to buy "Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies", available in many of the bookstores in Alberta. So many peaks to climb/hike, you wont know where to start. It was written with hikers and scramblers in mind.
Heres a link to a website you may find useful

http://peakbagger.tripod.com/


Quote:

I'm planning a trip to Banff this September, and am interested in peaks that I can summit without the use of ropes. Are any of the peaks that are accessable from the Abbot Pass Hut hikable (Mt Lefroy, Mt Huber)? Also, is it possible to hike from Lake O'Hara to Lake Louise over Abbot Pass?

Thanks

12:32 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Mt. Lefroy and Mt. Victoria

Quote:

Quote:

I'm planning a trip to Banff this September, and am interested in peaks that I can summit without the use of ropes. Are any of the peaks that are accessable from the Abbot Pass Hut hikable (Mt Lefroy, Mt Huber)? Also, is it possible to hike from Lake O'Hara to Lake Louise over Abbot Pass?

I guess it all depends on your frame of reference, but generally unless you are a highly experienced mountaineer who regularily solo's routes, the following applies:

Mt. Lefroy is not a scramble or hike, nor does it require glacier travel (but in fairness to Bill P, I suppose it could if you were to ascend up through the Death Trap on the Lake Louise side). Steep snow and ice slopes will be encountered and will require crampons and an ice ax.

Mt. Victoria is not a scramble or hike. Steep snow slopes with areas of high exposure will be encountered and will require crampons and an ice ax.

Mt. Huber does require roped glacier travel and is not a scramble or hike. Warnings about snow and ice apply here too.

I believe that all three of these summits are rated as Alpine II.

It is possible to traverse from Lake O'Hara to Lake Louise, but it involves two potential routes on the Lake Louise side. The first means glacier travel down the headwall into what is called the "death trap" - and I'm not even certain it is still passable. The second route is to use the Fuhrmann Ledges - again, NOT a hike.

Also, I would recommend that if you hike up from Lake O'Hara to the Abbot Hut - wear a helmet as you near the final scree slope since the route passes near some large cliffs that toss rocks frequently.

I agree that you should purchase the "Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies" by Alan Kane. You can get it online at www.rmbooks.com. It is an awesome book that will answer your questions. Do not be discouraged by the lack of ascents from Abbot Hut. There are a multitude of possible summits for you to tackle.

What is your current experience and fitness level? I could make some suggestions if you like.

Cheers,
D

1:24 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Mt. Lefroy and Mt. Victoria

Quote:

What is your current experience and fitness level? I could make some suggestions if you like.

Cheers,
D

My most technical hike so far has been over Paintbrush Divide in the Tetons (10,000 ft) where I had to cross a few snow fields and go on all fours at some points up to the divide. The rock was pretty loose, but the trail was clear.

I'm in fairly good shape, but I'm no ironman.

2:18 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Mt. Lefroy and Mt. Victoria

Quote:


Quote:

What is your current experience and fitness level? I could make some suggestions if you like.

Cheers,
D

My most technical hike so far has been over Paintbrush Divide in the Tetons (10,000 ft) where I had to cross a few snow fields and go on all fours at some points up to the divide. The rock was pretty loose, but the trail was clear.

I'm in fairly good shape, but I'm no ironman.

Okay, let's make the assumption that you'd like to just use your legs :)

Go to this website: http://go.to/topoftheworld ....scroll down the to bottom to "Places to Go"....then choose Scrambles - there is also a Hiking section.

I've done a bunch of these scrambles and they are mostly within an hour or so of Banff. You will find these same scrambles and many more in the previously mentioned book by Alan Kane.

You might try - Observation Peak, Cirque Peak, East End of Rundle, Cascade Mountain, Mt. Lady McDonald, Storm Mtn (south), Mt Rae, Big Sister, Mt. Bourgeau, Castle Mountain (TV Peak) and more...

I also know of folks who have hiked up to Abbot Hut just for a night's stay - it's a great place to be. Check out the Alpine Club of Canada website for booking and hut details. (www.alpineclubofcanada.ca)

When are you coming out?
D

3:44 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Mt. Lefroy and Mt. Victoria

Quote:


When are you coming out?
D


I'll be there in the middle of September. I have not purchased the plane tickets yet, so my dates are not completely set.

I was really hoping to find a three day loop out of Lake Louise (where we'll be staying) so my wife wouldn't have to drop me off AND pick me up.

I'd like to go out for a max of two nights. I originally wanted to hike either the Skoki Valley loop or the Skyline Trail in Jasper, but I figured I should keep my options open in case something unforseen happens. It was then it occurred to me that climbing an 11,000 footer might be fun, especially if I could get dropped off at the Lake O'Hara trailhead and hike back to Lake Louise, staying at the Abbot Pass Hut.

That's a long-winded answer to "When are you coming out?" but I seem to have hit upon a good info source here.

Thanks for everything.

Dave

5:07 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Mt. Temple

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"...an 11,000 footer might be fun..."

You should consider climbing the "tourist route" of Mt. Temple...at 11627ft, it might be just what you want.

Go here to check it out....
http://www.bivouac.com/MtnPg.asp?rq=Pg&MtnId=1584

I have not yet climbed on Temple, so I can't vouch for the route.

D

5:25 p.m. on February 19, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Mt. Temple

Agreed, I hear that route is a must do, but for the last few years there have been travel restrictions in that area due to an agitated grizzly bear. Groups of six are the minimum. Who knows, they may not enforce that restriction this year, you can find out on the banff park website closer to the date.


Quote:

Quote:

"...an 11,000 footer might be fun..."

You should consider climbing the "tourist route" of Mt. Temple...at 11627ft, it might be just what you want.

Go here to check it out....
http://www.bivouac.com/MtnPg.asp?rq=Pg&MtnId=1584

I have not yet climbed on Temple, so I can't vouch for the route.

D

7:51 a.m. on February 20, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Mt. Temple

Thanks for all the great info. I've been pouring over my maps. I'll also be buying Kane's book.

Dave

9:01 a.m. on February 20, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Bears and Moraine Lake Area

Yep, that grizzly momma just doesn't want to leave the valley does she?

On September 30, my two climbing partners and I were going up to Fay Hut via the Perrin route past Moraine Lake and we did not have to have a group of six. Apparently, for climbers going south and up (as opposed to up the valley to Temple) the restriction does not apply....go figure? On a side note, due to unforeseen route circumstances (verglas) we ended up descending in the dark and walking back to the parking lot with our head lamps....that was a bit nerve wracking knowing that momma grizz was up and about.

We did notice that there is a chalk board at the head of the trail at Moraine Lake which singles, 2's and 3's can sign up to form a larger group...might be a good option for you Dave.

9:08 a.m. on February 20, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Mt Richardson and Pika's Peak

Dave,

Just thought about two summits which are directly across the valley from Lake Louise to the East (and behind the ski hill). Mt Richardson and Pika's Peak are apparently awesome scrambles. I haven't yet done either, but I hear they are very nice. I had planned on bagging them in September last year, but I was soloing and concerned about the grizzly family in the area, so I went golfing instead :o). If you want to get Pika's Peak from the summit of Richardson, you should have an ice ax as you have to cross a snow slope.

Another one that you might like is Little Hector. This is basically a sub-summit of Mt. Hector and provides a great view of the ice-fields parkway which is the road leading north from Lake Louise to Jasper. It is located about 30 km (<20miles) from Lake Louise.

Cheers,
D

4:55 p.m. on February 20, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Bears and Moraine Lake Area

Quote:

We did notice that there is a chalk board at the head of the trail at Moraine Lake which singles, 2's and 3's can sign up to form a larger group...might be a good option for you Dave.

Thanks, that sounds perfect. Looking at my map, it appears I could hike to the campground in Paradise valley, do Mt Temple the next day, then go over (I forget the name) the pass to Moraine Lake and back to Lake Louise. Sounds like a good three day trip. What do you think?

10:31 a.m. on February 25, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Re: Bears and Moraine Lake Area

Quote:


Quote:

We did notice that there is a chalk board at the head of the trail at Moraine Lake which singles, 2's and 3's can sign up to form a larger group...might be a good option for you Dave.

Thanks, that sounds perfect. Looking at my map, it appears I could hike to the campground in Paradise valley, do Mt Temple the next day, then go over (I forget the name) the pass to Moraine Lake and back to Lake Louise. Sounds like a good three day trip. What do you think?

Sorry for the delay Dave. I haven't hiked the trip you mention, but I did have a look at it on the maps - seems like it would be suitable enough. The only caveat is that in the Lake Louise area - there is a high risk that the trails will be closed due to bear activity. Last year, there was a complete ban on any "soft-sided" campers and tents in the Louise campgrounds. Best to email or check with the wardens in Lake Louise.

With respect to Temple, don't underestimate the undertaking. Read as much as you can about the route to see if it is for you. Be prepared for the conditions you might encounter.

Even if there is a bear warning, Lake Louise is located so close to so many great summits - you shouldn't have any problem finding a nice peak to scramble.

D

5:47 p.m. on February 26, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Mt. Temple Scramble route

Dave,

Found this today and thought you would be interested.
http://www.rmbooks.com/books/temple.htm

Cheers,
D

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