Little Lougheed July 11, 2004

Mountain height: 2,483 m (8,144 feet)
Elevation gain:    778 m
Ascent time:      
1:45
Descent time:     1:10

Scrambling with Mark.

This day started off with Commonwealth Peak as our objective. Unfortunately, the “scattered showers” forecast should have read “ a continuous torrential downpour with cloud cover typical of that of the planet Venus”, and after hiking about 3.5 km and standing under some trees for 45 minutes, waiting for the heavy rain to subside, we had no choice but to turn around.  

Little Lougheed (as named by Bob Spirko) seemed to be the only summit in the Kananaskis area that was not shrouded in thick clouds and so we started up. The ascent was wonderfully easy compared to our previous attempt on February 1st of this year, where we had several feet of powdery snow to contend with. 

We found a good trail near the beginning that led us through some very interesting forest scenery. At one point you come across a stream flowing through fantastic moss-covered ground. After following the trail for about 20 minutes, we left it and headed up towards a large boulder field. The rest of the ascent just follows the right side of the mountain, on the edge of some fairly high cliffs – for a small summit, it’s actually quite scenic and interesting. We took the ascent at a fairly leisurely pace, hoping that the clouds would clear in the late afternoon. Unfortunately, they did not and we were quite disappointed to make a summit, that obviously would have had a fantastic panorama, under very cloudy conditions. The view of Old Goat, Nestor, and Lougheed would have been terrific. We stayed at the summit for quite a while, watching wave after wave of low clouds consuming the surrounding summits. When it came apparent that we would have to sleep up there to see any improvement, we started down.

Overall, a “mixed-bag day”: we were disappointed to have not been able to try Commonwealth and the rainy and cloudy conditions were most frustrating, however, the Little Lougheed hike was very interesting and quite satisfying even in the terrible weather conditions.

Looking at the clouds covering the last of the four peaks of Mount Lougheed

 

The final plod to the summit

 

Clouds were covering all the surrounding mountains, so why not photograph weird trees?

 

On the east side of the summit, with Mount Lougheed behind

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