Attempt date: February 19, 2012Completion time: 5 hours Participants: Sarah McLean, Patrick Latter
Weather conditions at base
Minimum Temperature: -11.0 °C Mean Temperature: -6.4 °C Maximum Temperature -0.3 °C
Pressure and Dew Point
Mean Sea Level Pressure: 100.79 kPa Mean Dew Point: -11.0 °C
Wind Speed and Gusts
Mean Wind Speed: 7.96 kmh Maximum Sustained Wind Speed: 9.90 kmh Maximum Wind Gust: 38.89 kmh
From Canmore follow the directions in town towards the 'Nordic Center'. Continue on around the reservoir and dam until you reach the 'Goat Creek' trailhead parking lot. This is the same parking lot you would use for 'East End of Rundle'. Once parked, walk across the main road and up the gated service road. You will cross over a bridge and pass a small utility building on the right. Follow the well defined trail from there up the mountain.
Warm ski jacket
Winter Hiking boots
Warm socks (or 2 layers of socks)
Goggles (extremely helpful once you break the tree line)
Snow-pants or gaiters
2 layers of gloves
We started later in the day around 1:00pm, hoping to get nicer light by the time we reached the summit. With it being a warm day, the trail was very busy and we saw at least 10 other people on the mountain. Heavy traffic on the trail made the hard packed snow slippery on some of the steeper sections; crampons would have been helpful. As we passed others on their descent, they cautioned us to the high winds at the peak. To avoid eating in the cold we decided to have lunch just before the tree line breaks. Within 2 or 3 minutes we were already surrounded by a group of whisky jacks looking for food.
At this point, we bundled up as best we could for the cold winds that awaited us at the summit. We reached the ridge that divides Ha Ling Peak and Miner's Col first. I liked the look of the curved lines and untouched snow of the ridge. I snapped a few photos of Sarah walking towards Miner's Col but with the wind being at it's worst on the ridge we decided to make for the top sooner than later.
After spending a few brutally cold minutes at the top admiring the view, we headed back down to the ridge to take a few more photos. I wanted to try a 30 second exposure now that the clouds had cleared slightly. With the extreme wind, I was hoping for the movement of the clouds to blur nicely.
The wind was finally too much and we started to make our way back down. At about 2/3rd's of the way down the sky light up in amazing purples and reds. I did my best to get to a viewpoint of East End of Rundle to do one final long exposure.