Date: March 2, 2019
Summit Elevation: 3,050 m
Total Elevation Gain: 1340 m (1.9 Ha Lings)
Total Distance: 19.6 km
Round Trip Time: 7:59
Crevasse and avalanche hazard.
I listened to “Through Heaven’s Eye” in the week preceding this trip, and Crowfoot Mountain made for a great object lesson. I don’t know if it was the cold or a general lack of fitness, but it was bit of a rough day. By the time we roped up for the glacier, several of us were pretty pooped, and we hadn’t even gotten a sight of the summit yet. I was pretty discouraged going up the glacier with no end in sight before me. Then I looked behind me and saw the Wapta Icefield in all its glory. It is easy to get tunnel visioned and miss out on the beauty all around you.
With my thesis defense date set, a lot of my effort is going to be focused on wrapping that up, and skiing is going to have to take a backseat for a couple months. But through Crowfoot Mountain and other means, God has been reminding me that there is a bigger picture that I mustn’t neglect, even as I make this big final push on the thesis.
As for the Crowfoot Mountain itself…I got a great look at it from atop the Wapta Icefield earlier in February, so I was excited to summit it with Nathan, Jordan and Cindy. The pattern of extreme cold with clear skies and solid stability continued—a bargain I am more than happy to take. After a chilly start across Bow Lake and through the canyon we started to warm up in the sun and make the long slog along the backside of the mountain. It’s a long way, but there a stunning views of the Wapta Icefield throughout (if you take the time to look around). I especially enjoyed seeing Mt. Balfour again and the broken glacier beneath it: it brought back fond memories of the Wapta Traverse last year. The ski down was nice and long and gave us even more time to take in the view.
In addition to being a beautiful bluebird day in which to suffer, this was also my 50th summit! A big thank you to Ryan, Scott, Nathan, Jordan and Cindy, and everyone else that I’ve been able to enjoy the Rockies with! You’ve been a great blessing and joy.