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Hillcrest Mountain
Crowsnest Pass, Alberta
March 31, 2007
Distance: 7.1 km
Cumulative Elevation Gain: 700 m

The forecast didn't look promising so hoping to find better weather south, we drove to Crowsnest Pass and set off for Hillcrest Mountain.

We had no prior knowledge of the mountain, but after studying a map of the area I saw an auspicious route: we could hike up a 4x4 road a short way before leaving it to head up the south end of the mountain. Although we weren't, in fact, able to escape the bad weather, we were able to find our way to the summit.

Hiking up the slope, we found there was no bushwhacking: a forest fire had swept the area and left bare trees standing. Just below the ridge, we scrambled easily up a short cliff band. Otherwise the trip was just a hike.

Once on the ridge, we plodded to the summit. Unfortunately low clouds and falling snow obscured our views the entire trip. We saw little of nearby Turtle Mountain to the north or the Flathead Range to the West, and it was pointless to take a summit panorama. Still, it was nice to venture in a different area when there are few climbs so early in the season.

KML and GPX Tracks

Hillcrest Mountain on a clear, late summer day

Coming up the slope full of dead trees

Unnamed peak to the south

The top of the cliff band appears

We skirted right and below the rock band

Following alongside the short cliff band

Scrambling up the cliff band

Another view shows the valley below

Typical travel along the ridge to the summit...

...with a couple of snowy sections like this

Grouse in a dead tree

The summit lies ahead

Flathead Range

Almost at the summit

Dinah checks the elevation on the summit with her GPS receiver

Turtle Mountain was hidden in cloud

On the descent, we made good time by using the snow-covered slopes

82 G/9 Blairmore

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