Numa Mountain
Kootenay National Park, B.C.
August 8, 2009

Numa Mountain can be ascended from Floe Lake, but having been to Floe Lake and wanting to avoid the 13 km approach, Dinah and I opted for a more direct route, one we hoped would minimize bushwhacking. We would hike up the Floe Lake Trail for about six km to an avalanche slope and then head straight to the summit.

Due to tree cover, there was little to see on the trail, so we were glad to reach the avalanche slope and start climbing. And climb we would, up an unrelenting grade. Routefinding required going straight up, save for bearing left whenever we encountered cliffs. Higher up, we angled left so as not to climb over the knob at GR587623, which would add unnecessary elevation gain. A 1500 m climb was enough for us.

Views were sorely missing on our route. The scenery seen from the avalanche slope was impressive but that soon ended. After topping the slope there was little to see because of trees and intervening ridges. Even when Numa Mountain came into view it appeared to be little more than a scree pile.

After plodding up the south slopes we reached the summit. Numa provided a ringside seat to impressive peaks such as Mount Ball and Foster Peak, but unfortunately, haze and clouds dimmed the scenery. After a short stay, we returned the same way we came up.


A few minutes into the trip, we crossed the Vermillion River


Floe Lake Trail


Looking up the ascent avalanche slope (click for a larger image)


Partway up, the trail lies far below in the trees


We kept left before reaching the cliffs


We headed left below the cliffs


Had we the time and energy, it would have been fun to explore these rocks


We bypassed more cliffs and went into a sparsely treed slope


A butterfly (meadow fritillary) joined us for lunch (mouse over for another view)


After our respite, we broke out onto another avalanche slope


Not much to see ahead. We soon started angling left to avoid ascending the knob.


Finally we saw Numa Mountain (click for a larger image)


We hiked above the treeline


As we got closer, it began to look like a pile of scree!


In the background, the south section of The Rockwall (click for a larger image)


Foster Peak to the southwest


Looking south at the knob: we traversed on the west side (click for a larger image)


The summit ridge


The summit


Isabelle Peak


Vermilion Peak and Mount Haffner in the foreground. Stanley Peak on the right.


Mount Ball


Heading down


Dinah tries the stone sofa at the foot of the avalanche slope


82 N/1 Mount Goodsir

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