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Mount Lefroy

Elevation [m]: 
Round Trip Distance [km]: 
Net Elevation Gain [m]: 
Ascent Time: 
3:00 From Abbot Pass
Thursday, July 10, 2014

After having just resupplied with new (functional) crampons from Canmore after being turned back on North Victoria in the morning, Steven and I drove to the Lake O'Hara lot to catch the last bus in and head up to the Abbot Pass Hut. I had gone up to the hut a couple years previously after a fresh snowfall and I must say that navigating this time (i.e. finding the yellow/blue markers for the trail) around was much easier. Following the official trail it took us a little over three hours to get up to the hut where we swiftly got a fire going, ate some grub, and caught a few hours sleep.

The next morning we woke up around 4 hoping to take advantage of an overnight freeze and assembled our gear for the coming trek. Through the summit of Mount Lefroy is a short way both distance and elevation-wise from the hut it is still a serious undertaking with ~400 vertical meters of ~40 degree snow/ice standing in your way. We aimed for the ascent gully on the far climbers right side and cramponed all the way up, alternating between front pointing and the occasional patch of kick-stepping. Sustained front pointing is quite tiring and by the time we reached the ridge Steven and I were pretty happy to be on flat ground again. Traversing from the false summit where we gained the ridge to the true summit was straightforward but exposed in places (thankfully the ridge was mostly dry so we knew we weren’t stepping on cornices!).

The true summit had a truly fabulous view with excellent visibility to all the nearby 11000ers and countless more distant peaks (another bonus was very little in terms of obvious smoke despite nearby forest fires). While the views were fabulous we knew we couldn't stick around for long and shortly after started our way back down. Descending was pretty much entirely front pointing on hard snow (and the occasional ice patch) which was somewhat tedious (and nerve-wracking given the long smooth way down!) but straightforward. Once back at the hut we took a well deserved break for lunch before starting the ramble back to Lake O'Hara to catch the bus out and prepare for meeting up with Ken for the third day of our trip traversing the Goat Range near Mount Yamnuska.

Mount Lefroy is a great snow route with phenomenal views but don't underestimate its ascent, 400m is a long way in hard snow/ice!


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Nice report, looking forward to doing this climb some time!

By Gerald S

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