Sheol Scramble

Page Type
Alberta, Canada, North America
Route Type:
Time Required:
Most of a day

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Sheol Scramble
Created On: Jun 11, 2005
Last Edited On: Oct 9, 2006


This is a 3600’+/- ascent day. Take the Paradise Valley trail approximately 6 km to the junction of Lake Annette and Giant Steps. Stay right towards Giant Steps for approximately 1 more km to a broad avalanche slope. This slope is active avalanche territory, meaning that you should find a relatively easy path (left) through brush while ascending the slope to the base of the mountain. This also means good grizzly habitat as they search the new debris for carcasses, etc.

Route Description

I did the 3600’ from car to summit in 3.5 hours. Once you leave the trail and work your way through a short amount of avalanche debris to the obvious gully, continue up this gully to the base of the mountain. Traverse right before the first headwall and proceed up the next gully you come to, east of the gully you just left. In June, I found intermittent snow patches in the gully that would prove to be a delight on descent, but I avoided this gully on ascent. Instead, I kept right of the gully and enjoyed some hands on scrambling up a few rock problems. This no doubt proves to be a more enjoyable, however more exposed, route up the gully. I jumped back into the gully at a short waterfall step as the climbing to the right got more difficult. I then scrambled up intermittent snow and scree filled ledges to a small ridge on the left that led to the main west-east ridge from Haddo. As soon as I hit the ridge there was a significant cairn and an even larger one just to the east at a high point. This is the highest point of Sheol, but is not the true summit. Again, Sheol is not a true mountain, but merely an extension of Haddo with the idea being that its summit represents the end of this ridge. Therefore, ignore this summit looking cairn and proceed to the end of the ridge to the east.

The crux of this scramble is a descent move on the ridge of about 10 meters. If you stay right, you will find moderate scrambling on loose ledges and blocks. A direct descent of this step is straight-up free climbing. Once back on to the ridge, proceed over easy ground to the end of the ridge for the true summit of Mount Sheol. Hector and Daly mountains are in the distance to the north. Haddo and Hungabee make up your western view. Eiffel and Pinnacle are to the southwest and the north face of Temple and its lone glacier dominate the south some 2000’ higher than the summit of Sheol itself. On descent, I chose to climb the 10 meter crux for a challenge, however, it can be easily circumvented to the left. Descend this eastern portion of the upper bowl on fast scree back to the gully. In June, I had good snow to glissade down intermittently for 2000’+. This is steep enough that you must be confident of your self arrest skills.

Essential Gear

Helmet, Ice Ax, Gaiters, Bear Spray

Sheol Scramble

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