I woke the entire hut up at 07:00 on Sunday morning by turning on the stoves and lighting the lanterns. I paid for it by being recruited to help change the outhouse barrel!. I won't go into detail on this except to say that the best way to ruin your morning appetite is to change an outhouse barrel. That is some nasty business my friends...
I waited 3 years to finally accomplish what TJ, Megan and I did on Saturday, April 18 2009 - summit Mount Hector. Truthfully, on hindsight, it's for the best that it took me this long. The ski down was much more pleasurable now that I'm more comfortable skiing powder. I'm not nearly as good a skier as TJ or Megs but I can enjoy myself rather than just do the 'survivor skiing' thing.
On March 23/24 I joined Kevin Papke for the first summit attempt on his quest for 50 summits in a "Summits for Seniors" fundraiser in his 50th year. Considering his birthday is on March 22nd Kev wasted no time to start his summit bids!
Hmmm. What do I say about this particular day? I'll make it short and sweet (ish). On Wednesday, March 10 2010, Wietse, Kevin (Papke) and I headed into the Wapta area to ski Crowfoot Pass and scramble the west slopes of Bow Peak before reaching its summit.
On Sunday March 27, 2011 So Nakagawa and I skied to the summit of Crowfoot Mountain under a clear, nearly windless spring / winter day. I haven't stood on a peak since I scrambled Midnight Peak way back on October 30 2010! I think that 5 months between peaks has to be some sort of new record for me.
Ever since reading the Nugara's trip report on snow shoeing Castleguard Mountain I've wanted to attempt it as a day trip on skis. Kevin Barton was also very interested and since Ferenc and I were turned around due to thick cloud cover in February 2012 while on a Columbia Icefield camping trip, Ferenc was also keen on a day trip attempt.
After summitting the highest mountain completely within Alberta and the third-highest in the whole Canadian Rockies at 12,238 feet high, we were ready to tackle one of the most exposed snow ridges and high altitude snow arete climbs in the Canadian Rockies - Twins Tower.
In spite of a tough approach the day before and just ascending Stutfield Peak in very windy conditions, TJ, JW, Ferenc and I decided we might as well take advantage of the clear conditions and bag Stutfield NE Peak while we were in the vicinity anyway. ;-)
After 2 full days of constant wind in the 50-80km/h range we were ready for a calmer day on Saturday, May 12th. Luckily when we woke up around 0600 the wind had indeed calmed down somewhat, probably in the 30km/h range.
The first week of February 2012 was looking pretty promising for weather and avalanche conditions in the Alberta Rockies. Since Hanneke wasn't on call for the weekend of the 4th I decided to send out the "who's in?" emails to start organizing at least one day of backcountry skiing - hopefully involving a summit of some kind.
On the shortest day of 2012 I was joined by Wietse and Kelly on an ascent of Mount Gordon on the Wapta Ice fields in bitterly cold but clear conditions. Of course, this wasn't my first time ascending this peak. It was the very first summit on the Wapta for me, back in 2006 on a bitterly cold January day.