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Eagle Mountain (Goat’s Eye)

Summit Elevation (m): 2820
Trip Date: Monday, September 25, 2017
Elevation Gain (m): 1700
Round Trip Time (hr): 7.5
Total Trip Distance (km): 15
Quick ‘n Dirty Rating: Class 1 – you fall, you are silly
Difficulty Notes: No difficulties other than having the motivation to slog to the summit after presumably already scrambling nearby Mount Howard Douglas.
Technical Rating: OT3; YDS (Hiking)
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After a delightful easy / moderate scramble up Mount Howard Douglas, it was time to add a second peak to my day. Why? Don’t ask. I guess I’m still a peakbagger at heart because there’s really no reason to grind up Eagle Mountain other than to claim another summit. In my case that’s not entirely true.

Passing through a nice larch forest on the way to Eagle Mountain.
The day continues to improve as I look back at Howard Douglas (L) and over the larch forest under Eagle Mountain.

The weather kept clearing as I descended Howard Douglas and as I topped out on the ridiculously easy Eagle Mountain I got even better views from its summit than Howard Douglas’, thanks to the clearing clouds. There’s really nothing else to add to this easy pile of scree. It was kind of neat to walk through the larch forest between Howard Douglas and Eagle and then to ascend some of the double black diamond ski runs that I’ve skied in winter.

There are only five named summits on the entire 24km length of the Sundance Ridge. Cone Mountain on the SE end, Beersheba (the highest point on the ridge at over 3,000m), Allenby and Mercer near the Allenby Pass – and Sundance Peak near the NW end and left on this photo.
The valley between Eagle, Unnamed (L) and Howard Douglas (R) looks like an interesting spot to visit, as does Brewster Creek running alongside the Sundance Range in the distance at right.
Looking west over the Sunshine Meadows towards The Monarch, Twin Cairns, Ramparts, Healy Pass, Haiduk, Sugarloaf, Healy Pass Peak, Greater and Lesser Pharaoh Peaks, Mount Ball (L to R).

After enjoying the views from the top – Howard Douglas looked fierce – I descended easy ski runs back to the base of the mountain before walking down the road and back to my truck in the parking lot.

I do think it’s worth doing these peaks together, but I recommend doing Howard Douglas first like I did, rather than Eagle which is Nugara’s suggestion. Howard Douglas is a much better scramble and if you’re too tired to bother with Eagle afterwards, you aren’t missing out on very much.

Eagle Mountain - Goat's Eye
Near the bottom of the Eagle Basin.
Near the bottom of the Eagle Basin.
I will traverse this boulder field to the right to attain the lower slopes of Eagle Mountain.
I will traverse this boulder field to the right to attain the lower slopes of Eagle Mountain.
Crossing the Sunshine Ski Resort boundary (note the string at right) and heading towards Eagle Mountain from Howard Douglas.
Crossing the Sunshine Ski Resort boundary (note the string at right) and heading towards Eagle Mountain from Howard Douglas.
Passing through a nice larch forest on the way to Eagle Mountain.
Passing through a nice larch forest on the way to Eagle Mountain.
The day continues to improve as I look back at Howard Douglas (L) and over the larch forest under Eagle Mountain.
The day continues to improve as I look back at Howard Douglas (L) and over the larch forest under Eagle Mountain.
Looking up "The Cleavage" - a black diamond run in winter and easy scramble when snow free.
Looking up "The Cleavage" - a black diamond run in winter and easy scramble when snow free.
Above The Cleavage now, looking over the ski resort at right and Howard Douglas at left.
Above The Cleavage now, looking over the ski resort at right and Howard Douglas at left.
Pretty easy (boring) scree plod to the summit!
Pretty easy (boring) scree plod to the summit!
A chopper checks me out - the summit of Howard Douglas also in this shot.
A chopper checks me out - the summit of Howard Douglas also in this shot.
Pretty good views looking north (L) and south (R) include Howard Douglas right of center. The peak at left foreground is unnamed.
Pretty good views looking north (L) and south (R) include Howard Douglas right of center. The peak at left foreground is unnamed.
Howard Douglas (L) looks scary from this angle!
Howard Douglas (L) looks scary from this angle!
Summit views.
Summit views.
Sundance Peak is impressive. And rarely ascended.
Sundance Peak is impressive. And rarely ascended.
There are only five named summits on the entire 24km length of the Sundance Ridge. Cone Mountain on the SE end, Beersheba (the highest point on the ridge at over 3,000m), Allenby and Mercer
There are only five named summits on the entire 24km length of the Sundance Ridge. Cone Mountain on the SE end, Beersheba (the highest point on the ridge at over 3,000m), Allenby and Mercer
Looking over Banff and Mount Norquay (L) towards Brewster, Cascade, Astley, Aylmer, Inglismaldie, Girouard, Peechee and Rundle
Looking over Banff and Mount Norquay (L) towards Brewster, Cascade, Astley, Aylmer, Inglismaldie, Girouard, Peechee and Rundle
Looking west over the Sunshine Meadows towards The Monarch, Twin Cairns, Ramparts, Healy Pass, Haiduk, Sugarloaf, Healy Pass Peak, Greater and Lesser Pharaoh Peaks, Mount Ball (L to R).
Looking west over the Sunshine Meadows towards The Monarch, Twin Cairns, Ramparts, Healy Pass, Haiduk, Sugarloaf, Healy Pass Peak, Greater and Lesser Pharaoh Peaks, Mount Ball (L to R).
The valley between Eagle, Unnamed (L) and Howard Douglas (R) looks like an interesting spot to visit, as does Brewster Creek running alongside the Sundance Range in the distance at right.
The valley between Eagle, Unnamed (L) and Howard Douglas (R) looks like an interesting spot to visit, as does Brewster Creek running alongside the Sundance Range in the distance at right.
Mount Bourgeau in the foreground with Black Brett and Regular Brett in the distance.
Mount Bourgeau in the foreground with Black Brett and Regular Brett in the distance.
I love this shot of The Monarch looming over the Sunshine Village at bottom center. Mount Shanks at left distance here.
I love this shot of The Monarch looming over the Sunshine Village at bottom center. Mount Shanks at left distance here.
Great views over Sunshine Meadows as I descend to the top of the Goat's Eye chairlift.
Great views over Sunshine Meadows as I descend to the top of the Goat's Eye chairlift.
Ski resorts always feel lonely in the off season for some reason.
Ski resorts always feel lonely in the off season for some reason.
Chairlift and larches.
Chairlift and larches.
Chairlift and larches.
Chairlift and larches.
Working my way down the ski runs.
Working my way down the ski runs.
Howard Douglas at upper left.
Howard Douglas at upper left.
This is much quicker on skis!
This is much quicker on skis!
The long road back to the parking lot.
The long road back to the parking lot.

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