The first time I climbed this mountain I was a novice leader, not to mention a novice scrambler. When we climbed the steep scree gully, I loosed a rock that struck Melanie, a member in our group, in the head. None of us was wearing a helmet nor had I taken any precautions to keep the group together.
When I realized Melanie was seriously injured, I sent another member of our group, Dan, back to seek help. Melanie had received a deep cut from a glancing blow from a rock the size of a football. After about an hour of resting she was well enough to walk. Meanwhile, after driving down the highway, Dan stopped a warden and brought him up the trail where we ran into them. The warden asked if I wanted a helicopter or an ambulance. I declined the helicopter but requested an ambulance. He radioed for a ambulance to meet us at the trailhead.
We met the ambulance at the trailhead and the medical attendants checked Melanie. They said she needed stitches. We declined their offer for a ride (at $10 per km). Oddly, there was no charge for having them drive to the trailhead and check the injury. We drove to the Canmore hospital where Melanie received stitches and was released.
When I returned a few years later, you can be sure we all wore helmets and stuck together! We bagged the peak without incident.
Mount Rae seen from Highwood Ridge
Highwood Ridge from Ptarmigan Cirque
Looking down the ascent gully
Kari and Wayne on the ridge
Climbing up the chimney underneath the chockstone
(mouse over for another view)
Dinah and Kari on the ridge
Ascending the ridge to the top
Heading back down the ridge
Looking back as we hike down Ptarmigan Cirque trail
82 J/10 Mount Rae
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