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Read’s Ridge and Read’s Tower
Kananaskis, Alberta
October 29, 2011
Distance: 6.4 km
Cumulative Elevation Gain: 936 m

Read's Tower is a short trip with decent views, leastways when the surrounding peaks are under snow. Dinah and I had driven past Read's Tower enough times to wonder how it stacks up as a hike.

From the Sparrowhawk parking lot, we easily found the trailhead and started up an obviously popular trail. From this trail, a side trail leads to Read's Ridge; it can't be missed as it's marked by a large cairn and a plethora of blue flagging. The trail climbs steeply to the treeless crest of Read's Ridge. The summit of Read's Ridge, though, barely registers as a bump. The real prize, of course, is Read's Tower, 300 m higher.

The broad expanse of the ascent slope offers little in the way of changing scenery, so our climb seemed slow, but we eventually reached the summit, carefully keeping clear of the snow cornice which hid a precipitous drop. The wind and the cold dissuaded us from staying long, however, and we soon started back down.

Perhaps we'll return to Read's Tower on a warm day in summer and enjoy a leisurely stay on the summit. But I doubt it.

KML and GPX Tracks

On the trail, Read's Ridge and Read's Tower above

Looking back after exiting the trees

Hiking up a barren ridge section

Spray Lakes stretches out behind us

Following Read's Ridge to Read's Tower

On the left is Mount Sparrowhawk.

Heading to the summit of Read's Ridge

Looking back along the ridge

Almost at the top of Read's Ridge

The summit of Read's Ridge, such as it is

Dinah starts up Read's Tower (mouse over to zoom in)

Spray Lakes stretches south

Steep grade up the west slope

The slog to the summit

Another view of Spray Lakes

Summit cairn ahead

Summit block of Mount Sparrowhawk

On top of Read's Tower

82 J/14 Spray Lakes Reservoir

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