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Red Ridge (NW ridge approach)
Kananaskis Park
February 14, 2004

When Dinah and I climbed Red Ridge last summer, I realized it would make a good winter ascent. We invited Anita and Mike to join us. Starting south of the Sparrowhawk Recreation parking lot, we headed up the NW ridge on snowshoes. The grade was easy and after 2 hours we popped out of the trees onto the ridge and into sunshine. This was about halfway up, both in elevation and in distance. Much of the ridge was dry after this point. After stashing our snowshoes, we continued up the ridge on foot. We hit a couple of deep snow pockets, but after that it was careful scrambling in the snow and rocks.

Near the summit we startled four pure white ptarmigans. 2.5 hours after dropping our snowshoes we were on the top. I tried to take a 360* panorama but my batteries died.

Postscript: We returned and snowshoed Red Ridge in 2006 taking a slightly more direct route.

Anita, Mike and Dinah follow in my tracks

Gentle grade up the wooded slope

Coming out of the forest

The view ahead after leaving the forest

We dropped our snowshoes and set off on foot. I like to stick my snowshoes
upright in the snow so I can spot them easily on our return.

We continued along the ridge on foot

Shortly after dropping our snowshoes, we hit deep snow but it didn't last long

Mike dropped into a hole hidden under the snow

Mike peers over a cliff

Scrambling on the ridge. Spray Lakes sets the background.

Easy scrambling as we headed to the summit

Relaxing near the summit

Heading back

82 J/14 Spray Lakes Reservoir

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