Overview of Heart Mountain
Having the appearance of a valentine heart, Heart Mountain is a great day trip mountain to scramble near Canmore and Deadmans Flats, AB. With its close proximity to Calgary via the Trans-Canada Highway. Heart be ascended year-round in a couple of hours because of the Chinooks. This peak is a steep scramble offering little in the way of relief till you reach the summit. There are 2 variations for descent .... the way you came up is one. The other would be to follow the ridge that starts just behind the summit south (left as you reach the summit). Follow and obvious trail and decend at the south end of the bowl. This is a very picturesque route. As well as being less direct.
With views of Grotto, Yamnuska to the east, Mt. Lorette 2,487 m (8,160 ft.) and Mount McGillivray 2,450 m (8,038 ft.) to the west as well as the south view of Calgary and north view of Exshaw (which is somewhat less interesting unless you are an industialist)
This was a very special place to our good friend Glen Wells and is where we spread his ashes.
Getting To Heart Mountain
View from almost the top of Heart mountain. Left to right, Grotto Mountain, Mount Fable (pointed peak in the background), far right framed by the trees, Yamnuska. Left out many others.
Head West from Calgary (about 75 km) on the Trans-Canada Highway towards Canmore. You will see this peak on the left as you near Exshaw/ Dead Man's Flats. You will have to exit at "Val des Arcs" and cross over to the south bound service road. You will have to park on the side of the TransCanada just before Heart Creek. On a normal day other parked cars will point the way. If you prefer a signed parking lot is on the South-bound side of the Trans-Canada Highway about 37 km east of Canmore but this will require a longer walk.
Look out for bear & fire warnings and postings. For closures ... look for yellow tape marking off trailheads in the area.
Other than that there is no red tape for this day (1/2 day) trip.
When To Climb
Can be climbed all year long - thanks to the Chinooks.
SCRAMBLES IN THE CANADIAN ROCKIES
Author: Alan Kane
For Heart Mountain - see pages: 42 & 43
The Alpine Club of Canada
Joining a club such as The Alpine Club of Canada is recommended when climbing in Canada. While it is not obligatory, useful information can be had at any of their Clubhouse in Canmore, or at their website which is open to everyone.
Staying at the club in Canmore is 21$ Canadian for members and 29$ for non-members. It can get quite crowded in the summer so a reservation is recommended.