Carthew Minor III

October 4, 2014

Mountain height: 2330 m
Elevation gain:    700 m       

Scrambling with Nicole.
I was dying to make a third ascent of Carthew Minor, having done the trip earlier in the present year and several years ago as a snowshoe trip. This time I would go during larch season and bring some company to witness the spectacle. Nicole graciously volunteered to accompany me.
I wasn’t expecting Nicole to have the same “WOW” experience that I had upon reaching the “Garden of Red Argillite” (I am clearly obsessed to the point of delusion with red argillite and have no bones about admitting it!), but to my surprise she did! We explored the Garden for quite a while and finished the ascent, as which point Nicole did exclaim that this had been her favourite trip in the Rockies so far.
I was a little nervous about subjecting Nicole to the downclimb to the Carthew Minor/Mount Carthew col (there were a few expletives uttered when she saw it!), but with a little coaxing she followed me down and agreed, upon reaching the bottom that it was much easier than it looked from above.
We then traversed towards the false summit of Mount Carthew to check out the yellowing larches on the ridge. As expected they were terrific, however a week earlier would definitely have yielded even more spectacular results. Since Mount Carthew was not on the agenda, we bailed down to the Carthew Summit trail and enjoyed the easy and scenic stroll back down to Cameron Lake.
That’s one person that I’ve now got hooked on this route - more to come, hopefully!

Nicole and Carthew Minor

The boulder field

More red argillite boulders

Nothing like a lone, yellow larch to spice up the scenery

Approaching the "Garden of Red Argillite"

Chapman Peak and Mount Custer dominate the view to the south

From the ridge, the false summit of Mount Carthew and Mount Alderson are visible

Someone is enjoying the trip!

At the summit

The view towards Cameron Lake

The view towards Mount Cleveland

Views from the downcimb

The last section of the downclimb

Someone likes red argillite as much as I do

The scenic traverse. Most of the yellow larch needles had fallen off the tress at this point

Heading down to the Carthew Summit trail