Finding myself with a free weekend in the summer is a very rare occurence, so when it happened on the weekend of August 7, 8 and 9 I arranged a 3 peak extravaganza!
The first summit would be a solo effort so I chose something without a lot of difficulties and a short approach, Observation Peak.
There really isn't a lot to say about this scramble, it's pretty easy and it's hard to get lost. Simply follow Alan Kane's instructions and you'll encounter no difficulties. A number of people have either attempted or done this mountain with snow and apparently this can be tricky due to avi slopes. As a summer objective this is a fast outing (I took less than 4 hours up and down but had a 2 hour nap / break on the summit!) and has very respectable views.
The view of the approach gully after a very short jaunt in the forest on a faint trail:
Looking up the avi gully. Stick to climber's right for the best trail / ascent options.
Getting higher up the gully you can look down at the ascent route and across the parkway at Peyto Lake.
This is the most 'scrambly' the mountain gets. It's a fun little section. The false summit lies above.
An excellent view of the north end of the Wapta Icefield comes into view. The prominant mountain is Mount Baker.
Mount Baker, Peyto Peak and Caldron Lake.
Mount Olive, Nicholas and Gordon with Iceberg Lake and Bow Glacier Falls.
Looking ahead to the real summit from just under the false one. Just to the left of the summit lies Howse, White Pyramid and Chephren. Forbes is the tall one in the background.
I'm pretty sure this is Recondite Peak:
Vern relaxing on the summit of Observation Peak, "observing" stuff... ;-)
Mount Mummery and the Mummery Glacier.
Panorama looking east (click to view full size):
Panorama looking west (click to view full size):
Beautiful scenery across the valley:
Looking north, up the Icefields Parkway from the summit:
Another shot of Mount Hector. The Skoki peaks are on the left side of the picture. Note the small tarn showing off it's nice blue color in the bottom left.
A shot of the next day's objective, Mount Chephren is the pointy peak on the right. The mountain to it's left is White Pyramid and the next one over is Howse Peak.
Cool shot off the descent ridge, Mount Jimmy Simpson in the foreground.
View of Observation Peak from the approach road. The highest looking peak is the false summit, you must traverse left to the true summit from there (about 15 minutes):