Hiking Banff: Helen Lake / Cirque Peak

Located along the Icefields parkway in Banff National Park, Cirque Peak is rated a premiere hike in “Don’t Waste Your Time in the Canadian Rockies”, with awe-inspiring panoramic summit views.  Unfortunately, on the day we hiked it, fires blazing through British Columbia had created a significant smoky haze throughout large sections of Banff National Park.  Fortunately, we had a freak once-in-a-lifetime trail incident in which we saw a #$@!*^& LYNX.  You win some, you lose some. Continue reading

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Hiking Kananaskis: Grizzly Peak

Located in the less crowded Kananaskis valley southeast of Banff, humble 8200 foot Grizzly Peak offers incredible views with a rating of “easy” in Kane’s “Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies” book.  I would argue that there is zero scrambling to achieve the summit of Grizzly Peak, but don’t worry, it’s ~900m (3000ft) of elevation gain in ~5km round trip, making it SUPER DUPER STEEP! Continue reading