Lake Louise and Haffner Creek a day in the sun, rock and ice



Haffner Creek - The man from Keith in action.

We left Ambleside Lodge in Canmore a bit late as we had to pick Lilly up who was staying overnight at a friend’s in Canmore. Sue’s breakfast of toasted fruit in brown sugar and yogurt was incredible.  Canmore has changed so much since my first visit in the early 80’s there are so many wonderful houses with incredible views both sides of the Bow River and the huge mountains.


Burnt Trees at Haffners - a surreal walk in?

It is the weekend the cliffs will be busy so after a drive of about an hour and a half we reached Haffner Creek, another incredible situation, near the massive Stanley Head Wall. There were plenty of cars in the car park and the sun was out giving the place a wonderful feel to it. The walk in is about 20 minutes about 30 for me, my back was very sore. It is all incredible to be here. There is a deep trail to follow and part of the forest we walked through has been badly burned a few years ago, making the place feel a bit strange. I am sure you could still smell the fire?  The Canyon opens after a walk through the woods and it was very busy. There were about 30 -40 climbers on the limestone walls mostly mixed climbing on routes with preplaced bolts. It was like an outdoor gymnasium and incredible to watch. The routes are very close and it was amazing to see climbers falling on the bolts and climbing rock with axes and crampons, you can still get hurt though by falling axes , the odd rock and bodies hurling near you, not my scene at all, but incredible all the same. There are also a few ice routes and soon the boys were having fun in the sun. Geff and the boys lead a couple of wild lines and I just watched and it was a bit scary as he moved onto the rock from the ice. I tried to climb a bit of ice but my old back was awful today really sore took it easy, it was still fine to be outside in this theatre of ice and rock. It is so easy to get upset with the back but you just have to realise that I am lucky to be here and get on with the personal disappointment.  We walked back after about 5 hours it was still warm and sunny and back to Lake Louise to the Hostel for an early night. My back is not good so I will stay here today and try to book the Hostel for our move again up to Rampart Creek near the Weeping Wall, where we go for two days after another night at Lake Louise. It is another great day the temperatures are dropping and the sun is out I just have to be patient and enjoy the beauty that is the Rockies.

Haffner steep ice


About heavywhalley.MBE

Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 37 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 3 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer when body slows, loves the wild places.
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