Mount Victoria

Mount Victoria Trip Report (#18805)

  • Signed By: Eric Lepage
  • Date submitted: February 14, 2006
  • Number of People Encountered:0-10 people
  • Recommend to a Friend: Highly

Well, here I was up at Abbott Pass Hut getting my stuff together with our alpine guide and another member of our party ( 3 in all ) at 3:00 A.M. It had snowed heavily the few days before up on the ridgeline, so I knew it would be an interesting day. I had done a lot of hiking , some gym climbing, but never anything like this. Anyway up we went the Victoria Wall in the pre-dawn light aided by our headlamps. Great views straight down to Lake Louise. Some 4th class scrambling, maybe one or two small vertical sections. Once up on the ridgeline the sun was up, and we were in deep snow. The conditions were such that we had to be absolutely on the ridge the whole traverse from South Victoria Peak to the Main Summit of Mount Victoria itself. The sickles were razor sharp from the snow fall. The guide used his ice-axe to pat down placements in order for us to walk accross. Of course belay stations were a must here. Up and down we proceeded over every little bump and knob on the ridge. We encountered some vertical down and up climbing on exposed bits of rock sticking through. We summitted at about 11:00 A.M. and we doubled back to Abbott Pass Hut. We had to hurry as the snow was getting soft from the sun. The guide amused himself by setting of a cataclysmic avalanche with a snowball that he threw off the south face of Victoria Ridge. It seemed that half of the face just peeled off, to roar down to the seracs of the Upper Victoria Glacier. In fact the force of the avalanche was such that one of the seracs toppled over to fall down into the death trap. I hope that there were no climbers down there that day. Anyway down the Victoria Wall we went, sliding down on our crampons as they skidded on the rock. The guide thought that gravity was a wonderful downclimbing assist. We were back at Abbott Pass hut at approxiomately 2:30 P.M. Fun.

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