bobspirko.ca  |  Home  |  Canada Trips  |  USA Trips  |  Hiking  |  Snowshoeing  |  About

Anklebiter Ridge
Kananaskis, Alberta
May 5, 2018

“This is a fun ridge!”
“A very nice ridge!”
We were only a third of the way up the south ridge of Anklebiter when I heard these remarks from members in our group. It was a sentiment, I'm sure, shared by the others, even the dog. From bottom to top, Anklebiter Ridge is an engaging, easy scramble.

We parked by Grotto Pond at the trailhead for Grotto Creek trail. Five minutes after starting out, we took a right fork that runs alongside a creek bed. A moment later, we turned right again and started up the south ridge of Anklebiter.

The trail soon became interspersed with short sections of firm rock that we scrambled up. The changing terrain kept us guessing what lay ahead and kept us absorbed in our task to reach the summit.

With eight people on board, this was a social trip with long breaks to chat, but eventually we reached the open summit of Anklebiter Ridge. After a long stay, our attention turned to getting down.

Like others climbing Anklebiter, we did a loop and came down the southeast ridge. This meant shifting gears: unlike our straightforward climb up, we had to routefind our way down. Our first obstacle was the cliff band that bars a direct descent down the ridge. We got around that by dropping down the north slope below the summit.

Once below the cliff, most in our group traversed left to regain the ridge, although a few opted to reach the crest more directly. We regrouped on an impressive rocky knob before plunging into the trees. Here we floundered. The ridge with its hidden twists and dips – details not on the map – made it difficult at times to determine the best direction to take. But we plugged away and bushwhacked to the bare summit of Bluemat Hill.

After reposing for a time on our second objective, we started down, intent on reaching the highway below. We soon found a trail that developed into a great scree run, only to find both scree and trail ended abruptly mid slope. Some dropped down to a gully, while others contoured right to reach a trail on a spur. The trail was short lived, however, and everyone had to bushwhack down the rest of the slope. Despite splitting up, we ended up at the same spot along the highway and walked 750 m back to the parking lot. As we passed by Grotto Pond, we got a good look at the “fun ridge,” Anklebiter Ridge.

KML and GPX Tracks


Anklebiter Ridge seen from the highway. Bluemat Hill is on the right.


Gathering at the trailhead


In a short time we reached the first clearing


Mount McGillivray in the background


The ridge becomes rocky ahead


We reached our first scrambling section


On to the next section


More scrambling


Looking back down the ridge


Most of the ascent is a hike


Smooth slabs ahead


Looking back


We encountered a few snow patches


The summit came into view


A ridge connects Gap Peak to Anklebiter Ridge


Continuing to the summit


Looking back along the ridge


Ruth leads the way to the top


Wil, Sonny, So, Wendy, Zosia, Asieh, Ali and me on the summit of Anklebiter


Gap Peak fills the view northwest while Mount Fable appears on the right


The southeast ridge leads to Bluemat Hill on the right


From the summit, we dropped down the north slope to get to the end of a cliff band


Looking back as others made their way down from the summit


Coming down the snow at the end of the cliff band


After reaching the base of the cliffs, most traversed left but a few climbed up to the ridge crest


Crossing slabs on the traverse


On the ridge looking back. You can see the long cliff band we had to go around.


While waiting to regroup on the ridge, Sonny strikes a pose


Continuing down to Bluemat Hill

Following the ridge to Bluemat


Almost there


On Bluemat Hill with Anklebiter in the background


Looking down Bow Valley


A hawk flies by


Heading down to the highway


Excellent scree to run down!


After walking down the highway, we were back at Grotto Pond


Looking across Grotto Pond at the lower slopes of Anklebiter Ridge


82 O/3 Canmore

Canada | Home