AB Cen = Alberta Rockies Central (Banff & David Thompson) Stoney Mountain - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 11-07-2020, 05:21 PM Thread Starter
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Default Stoney Mountain

Many years known as "Stoney Squaw"; this summer "Squaw" has been dropped and now it is just Stoney Mountain. "Mountain" is definitely far fetched, as it is small forested bump just across Norquay Ski area. It is one of 2 easy accessible peaks in Banff area (the other being Tunnel Mountain). You drive directly below it on Trans-Canada. It is an easy, mostly forested walk starting from Norquay parking lot and whole thing takes little more than an hour. There are some options including loop return with bit of wondering on official Lower Stoney trail (that eventually descends to Buffalo Paddock below Cascade Mountain and Trans-Canada Highway. Some photos:


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[Official Park Table by Norquay Parking Lot. Going for Cascade Amphitheater, of destinations further north you have to cross lengthy ski area. Stoney Trail branches right and dips straight into forest]


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[Trail is entirely forested and frozen snow made me put spikes. This is the opening with views south to Sulphur Mountain and general Banff area about 10 minutes before the "summit". This was probably best viewpoint of the day]


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[Sunny and enjoyable section of trail just before the "summit"]


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[Stoney Summit. Think I've read it described somewhere as "Sweeping viewpoint" but this is simply not the case. It is just an opening in the woods]


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[Telephoto of Peaks south of Lake Minnewanka and curling Trans-Canada Highway below]


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[Telephoto of Cascade Mountain, one of 2 Banff landmarks (the other being Rundle Mountain)]


Nobody passed for awhile on loop return. This part was entirely forest enclosed. Upon reaching Norquay Ski area wondered a bit around. Ski Hill is already open and some people were skiing, but not all chairlifts were open. Snow Canons are making snow as there is still not enough
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Finally alpinglow shot of Cascade Mtn from Banff Townsite later on:
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About 5km and ~250m elevation, with high point 1905m. Map Profile and Elevation, with end point down Cascade trail for about a km and thus appears lower:
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I'd definitely not recommend wasting sunny summer/autumn day on Stoney Mtn, but in shoulder season it was an agreeable short exercise. Detail write-up with downloadable GPS track and high-res photos here

Last edited by zeljkok; 11-09-2020 at 12:10 AM.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 09:03 PM
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Wow, skiing already! None of the hills here are open yet (I think). Looks like lots of precip coming this way in the next week though.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 11-11-2020, 10:45 PM Thread Starter
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Ya, think I read somewhere this is historically earliest they opened up. Louise and Sunshine have plenty of skiers even on a workday already. But there is still not enough snow & snow canons are helping out. This is pic from today (Nov 11) at Canmore Nordic Centre
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