June 11th 2014
After working 8 days in a row and finally a day off, a trip to the mountains was a must (even if it was only for a day). My dad was able to get the day off too which was nice. I was looking for something rather shortish, but also exciting, as I needed to make it back to Edmonton not too late. After getting some inspiring views of The Wedge from an ascent of opal ridge north a couple weeks earlier, it seemed like a great choice [and it was
To get to the trailhead, go right after the metal gate from the parking lot and follow the wide open hiking path for a minute. There should be a trail on the left marked with flagging. I also made a cairn here to help. The trail starts with some deadfall but quickly improves and follows a drainage for a ways. But eventually the trail crosses into an avalanche runout and disappears. From here we decided to ascend directly up the steep grassy slopes. Otherwise you can find the trail again on climbers left.
Lots of snow and post-holing in the trees once we gained the ridge that leads to the base of The Wedge. The NE slope leading to the summit ridge starts off with some interesting scrambling but soon turns into a short slog to the top. Then you are treated to an exciting ridge traverse to the summit! No snow provided interference and the crux is quite easy for Kane to rate it as difficult, I was able to ascend it on the way back without using my hands.
No wind, no bugs, cool temps, awesome views, and so a great and enjoyable summit stay. On descent we stuck to the trail along the treed ridge but that just caused more encounters with snow and should have just followed our more direct ascent line through the steep grassy slopes.
1. The Wedge from the parking lot.
2. Making our way up alongside the drainage.
3. An avalanche runout zone, trail can be found again on climbers left. We went straight up from here.
4. Almost at the base of the Wedge after some strenuous but short post-holing. At least out here the snow hard enough to keep us on top, most of the time...
5. Me making my way up.
6. Soon you encounter some scrambling.
7. Short slog to the summit ridge.
8. View of the summit and its connecting ridge.
9. Balancing my way down the crux.
10. Photo taken on return. My dad making his way up the crux. It looks more challenging than what it really is.
11. Me approaching the summit.
12. Looking back at the ridge from the summit.
13. Looking towards Opal Ridge. Went up the kane north peak with my dad a couple weeks ago and continued along the ridge for little ways before turning back. Apparently there was a fatal fall, somewhere along the ridge, a few days earlier?
14. Summit shot.