Friday, 8 March 2013

12th August 12 Skoki Area Backpack from near Lake Louise

After a few day trips in the Rockies we took off for a short backpack to the Skoki Lakes east of Lake Louise. We started at the Fish Creek Trailhead below the Lake Louise ski area.

View skoki canadian rockies in a larger map

Day 1- We walked in for about 3 hours to our camping spot we had pre-booked at Hidden Lake. Pitched the tent in a hurry as the mozzies soon found us and then hung our food up away from any hungry bears. We intended scrambling up Mt Richardson, a peak above the lake in the afternoon. This pic shows the approach to Hidden Lake through flower meadows.

 Climbing onto the ridge of Mt Richardson looking across to Pika Peak and down to Hidden Lake. Free from the mozzies at last!
Nice walking with beautiful panoramas all round.
Snow patches on the summit of Richardson. Here we are looking north to Mt Hector I think.
The panorama photo below gives a good impression of the beautiful landscape.

 Brian at rest on the summit!
More snow patches. On the descent we managed a dip in Hidden Lake, kept short by the frigid water temperature!
Day 2-We thought we would have a go scrambling up the next peak to Mt Richardson with the great name of Pika Peak. However we were beaten back by unending loose scree on the middle slopes! So we decided to move on to our next camp and to do an afternoon walk around to Skoki lodge.

 Looking back west past Ptarmigan Lake on our way to our 2nd campsite at Baker Lake.

Oncolites in the rock at Hidden Lake 
 The flower meadows were fantastic in this area.
Chipmunk ready to dash for cover. 
 After a couple of hours walking where we saw a couple of bald eagles and a loon, we made it to Baker Lake and pitched the tent in the prepared campsite. We decided to head out for a loop walk round Fossil mountain and over to Merlin Lakes for the afternoon/evening.
Passing Skoki Lodge, used as a winter ski touring base and for summer hikers as well.

 Lower Merlin Lake above Skoki Lodge
 Fork in the trail!
 Merlin Lake looking up to our peak from yesterday- Mt Richardson.
On the way back to camp over Deception Pass. On the other side of the pass we spotted fresh bear poo on the trail and lo- a bear appeared soon after about 150m from the trail but heading the same direction we were-back to our tent!! we shuffled off quickly but the bear reappeared at our campsite later, taking an unhealthy interest in our food bags hanging from a pole. Fortunately the bear lost interest and ambled off..........

....but next morning we saw the bear again rambling around on the other side of the lake, happily this time not taking any notice of us! Our new friends were millions of insects however. We took to the water for some relief....

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