It's cold when it's dark, and it's cold when you go, and it's cold when
you stop, and it's cold ...
was - sun rises at 8am, sets at 6pm, it's a 7 hour hike plus an hour
for lunch so we had better be on the trail at sunset to have a good
margin of saftey. In a moment of surprising self sacrafice, Mark
agrees to wake up early and we are actually standing at the gate to the
trail at 8am. The car said it was 4°C - I think it was
The trail was in better conditions than pretty much anything I have
seen in the Vancouver area. It was a gentle slope up and the
light dusting of snow (which wasn't even close to melting) had the
occasional foot prints from squirls. In the forest we
climbed and climbed, thankful for the work to keep us warm. At
one break in the trees we could see the golden light of sunrise on the
mountains. Climb and climb.
At some point we started to turn into a
pass taking us to the lake, but just before going in, a beautiful view
opened up. We were standing in an avalache destroyed area, but
thankfully we were months ahead of avalanche season. As a skiier,
I still had an uneasy feeling being there. The sun wasn't going
to reach us any time soon - it was on the other side of the ridge we
were climbing which made for some nice contrast, but no warmth.
into the meadows (at least I think it was a meadow - it
was burried in snow!), We really missed the heat. I
was hoping I
could see the sun edge it's way against the rock face, but it was
traveling too slow to easily perceive.
Welcome to Bourgeau lake. Frozen. Not green. Nothing
like the hike book photo (which was probably taken in July). I
was just about frozen from stopping to take photos and I wasn't about
to sit down in below zero temperatures to eat lunch at 10:30am.
has to be the nicest sign I have ever seen 7km from a trail head,
Harvey lake was just over there (the pass on the right in the above
photo) and guide book said it was about an hour away. No problems
- the possibilty of sun made it a reasonable destination. (I have
to admit the name also has a certain attraction).
Funny thing. The higher you go, the colder it gets. The
colder it gets, the more snow there is. We had good boots, but we
weren't prepared for two feet of snow. The sun was welcome
relief. Once we got up high enough that we saw another lake
(which turned out to be just some unnamed lake - not Harvey Lake -
that's over the rim in the below picture). We climbed the skree a
little and sat down for lunch. And froze.
While I wanted to go higher - see more -
it just wasn't reasonable in our poor state of preperation.
of us had gloves but both of us were falling into the snow as
we hiked. Both of us were wearing just pants. It was time
to go back to the hotel with the hot tub.
John Harvey Photo > Map of the North Western North America > Banff in Mid Week > Bourgeau Lake
John Harvey Photo > John's Overnight Page > Banff in Mid Week > Bourgeau Lake
Last Modified Sunday, November 9th, 2003 at 23:39:37 Edit
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