Crazy Carl and I had an opportunity and a weather window to run up Mt Rae. Even with the wildfire
smoke, we managed to get some pretty good views too.


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Carl and I had an early start in order to still get a full work day in, and so we had some nice alpenglow
to start with on the Tyrwhitt side of the valley - I think that's Mt Pocaterra.


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Pocaterra on the right and Tyrwhitt on the left in the alpenglow.


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There are loads of people going up the Ptarmigan Cirque hike and it ends here at the top of the cirque.


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Once you get to the head of the valley, the real slog starts. It's lots and lots of scree and lots of
elevation in a short distance. Notice Carl with his head down, along with a decent view in the morning.


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There was still a bit of snow left at the end of the valley before the slog. The backside of Arethusa
is pretty sweet with the layers and the synclines.


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This is showing where we're heading (col just above the snowpatch). It's basically a scree slog for
~400m elevation finishing with really steep scree on a tilted angle until you get to the ridge line.


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The sun starting to break onto the mountains.


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Carl says 'are we there yet?'


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This debris mess is what we had to navigate. We went far looker's left just below the snow patch
since it had a bit better rock around it for stability. Still LOTS of rocks were flying down the
entire time so I'd mandate helmets, along with a good gap between people.


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Looking back to Arethusa and Carl deep in effort.


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Carl, along the rock rib we went up to the col.


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Once you gain the col, you get rewarded with a look down onto the Rae Glacier. It looks pretty
skinny this year for sure.


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Looking through the head of the Elbow Valley, across to Elpoca Mountain.


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Carl coming up the last of the scree for this side of the climb.


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Looking back at the Pocaterra ridge and the Elk range.


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Looking at Elpoca and Tombstone at the head of the Elbow valley.


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Carl moving along the ridge towards the summit push.


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A better look back along the col we crossed into (low point) and looking back to the southwest.
I think that's Mt Joffre with all of the snow on it on the right, and possibly the peaks above
Elk Lakes (Battisti, Cadorna, Abruzzi) to the centre of the frame.


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Mt Joffre and McCuaig at the entrance to the Height of the Rockies Park. Pocaterra in the foreground.
Sarrail on the right side here.


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Once we gained the proper summit ridge, the rock quality got a bit better and other than the occasional
drop to the left to avoid some climbing, we stayed on the ridge. It was a bit pucker-inducing with the
hard vertical drop to the right side.


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Looking to the South-Southeast from the summit ridge, you get a nice view of Storm Mtn and Mist too (barely)
along with all of the peaks near Highwood like Junction and Holy Cross and Head and Pyriform.


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Carl on the last bit with the pinnacle/gendarme visible behind him. We dropped below the gendarme and it
was quite a bit easier that way. More scree, but less exposure.


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Carl on a rib with Mt Storelk visible behind him.


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A better view of what once can see from the summit ridge on Mt Rae. Carl should frame this in his office
to remind himself that life is too short and you need to get out there.


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A cool look at Joffre from Rae and Carl in the foreground.


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Carl says 'whoop whoop, we made the summit in 3h 15 mins!'


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Yeah baby!


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On top of Mt Rae, 3218m. I think that's actually Mt King George and Mt Prince Edward over my left shoulder.

View from the summit video



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I **think** this might be Mt Assiniboine, but it was really tough to pick out of the smoke that far away.
It would be ~60 km away, so maybe.


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Carl, hanging out on the summit of Mt Rae looking down to some pretty vertical rock below. It's quite the
'battleship' in the words of my new collaborator Ben. That's Cornwall, Banded Peak, Glasgow on the left,
and Cougar and Threepoint on the right of Carl.


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The way down is always a bit more tense on ridges since you tend to resort to going 'au cheval'
once you realize that there is ~1000 feet of air on one side of you.


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The group coming up behind us chose (smartly) to wait until we exited the bowling ball alley of scree.
Carl and I put big distance between us. You can see him halfway up.


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Coming back down to Ptarmigan Cirque.


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You can see the reason that so many people hike Ptarmigan Cirque. It's gorgeous and takes only
~30 minutes from the car to a beautiful alpine meadow.

Data and funny GPS/Ultratrac track from our day is HERE

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