Friday, September 24, 2010

Hiking the Bow Valley - highline style!

Two days and 42km later, my friend Jody and I finished what's known as the Bow Valley Highline Trail. What a spectacular trip! We did the route from west to east, and I personally think this is the best direction to do it.


On Wednesday morning, we departed (in fog - booo!!) from the Vista Lake trailhead on Hwy 93. The low clouds burned off within a few hours however, and we enjoyed lovely views as we hiked past Arnica Lake, over Arnica Summit, past both the Twin Lakes, up over Gibbon Pass, and down to the amazing Shadow Lake Lodge, which is where we stayed for the night.


Thursday morning, we headed past the gorgeous Shadow Lake towards Ball Pass Junction and then down Whistling Valley, past Haiduk Lake and up over Whistling Pass.


From the pass we dropped down to Egypt Lake and took a quick break at the shelter for some lunch.

The last leg of the trek went up over Healy Pass and down alongside Healy Creek to the Sunshine Ski Area parking lot.

Much of the route is in the trees, and due to the recent freak heavy snowfall and subsequent above zero temps, the trail was mostly muck and snow. Needless to say, I spent about 80% of the time in soaking wet footwear! Aside from poor trail conditions though, the hike was fabulous! We made it over four 2300m passes and saw nearly a dozen fantastic lakes in our 15 total hours of hiking.

Thanks so much to Jody for joining me - we shared many laughs ("Oh my goodness!!" - ask Jo about it if you see her!) and I had such a great time!! What a way to spend the first few days of fall!

Bow Valley Highline Trail - Hwy 93 to Sunshine Ski Area Parking Lot
Time (car to car): 15hrs over 2 days
Distance: 42km
Elevation Gain: ~1800m total

1 comment:

Kurtis Kristianson said...

Great Stuff Cheryle! These images are fantastic. I need to get out more for that sort of thing but the people I shoot are mostly frontrangers. See you out there!