Park at the Helen Lake trail head (east side of road) on the Icefields
Parkway 33 km north of the Trans-Canada Highway. Proceed on a trail for
6 km to Helen Lake. Now you have two options, either continue on the trail
to Dolomite Pass or, as I did, just head straight for the peak via the left side
of the lake. This route takes you to pristine high alpine meadows and
eventually to shale and rubble. As I proceeded to the base of Cirque, I
bypassed some short cliff bands to the left and dove straight up snow and
ice angling back right, aiming for the summit ridge. This was a steep hump,
but once I gained the ridge, I traversed with ice axe over to the first, lower
summit and then carefully descended and made for the real summit slightly
south, which has a register. I made the summit in under 3 hours. This was a
cold, blustery and cloudy day, but still offered good views of the Crowfoot
and Bow Glaciers to the West. I returned the same way. Helen Lake is a
great place to have your lunch.
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