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MtnNinja 10-18-2011 08:45 PM

Mt. Ptolemy in southern Alberta
Mt. Ptolemy is the highest peak in the Flathead range. A rough logging road close to the mining community of Corbin, BC provides an excellent access to the mountain. We took a direct line to the false summit from where we parked. It worked out perfect! From the false summit, the connecting ridge to the summit looked incredibly daunting. The traverse to the true summit involved some intense and sustained stretches of difficult and exposed scrambling. The crux for us was the last big notch in the connecting ridge. It was severely exposed, so there was no room for error. First we had to descend a loose gully and then traverse a scree covered ledge to a wall of steep slabs. This is where I put my climbing shoes on and Liz asked for a rope. After we regained the ridge, we`ve encountered no further difficulties. After a lengthy summit stay, we retraced our steps back along the ridge. Hard to believe that such a prominent peak sees very few visitors.


nmcan84 10-18-2011 11:24 PM

I haven't been to the crowsnest area for a year or more,but when i was in the area ptolemy came to mind alot. I used to do alot of flyfishing down the backroads there.

Looks like the final ridge would be a tense moment for me, i don't like loose exposed ridges.

MtnNinja 10-19-2011 08:22 PM

It`s great you are familiar with the Flathead range and Mt. Ptolemy. Most people have never even heard of it. It`s a beautiful area with great hiking opportunities and some terrific potential for scrambling. Because it is not in a national park, there are no restrictions, no rules and you can camp anywhere you want.

Shaun, since you`ve been to this area before, do you happen to know the best approach for Mt. Darrah? Have you done any flyfishing at Lost Lake? I went on an exploratory trip there this summer, took the Sartoris road and then one of those narrow side roads towards the Continental Divide. It turned out to be a very rough ATV road, so I turned around.

nmcan84 10-19-2011 09:51 PM

no,i'm not sure about darrah. havent' fished at lost lake either,i stuck to rivers mainly.

ptolemy is the only mtn in that area that i really knew at the time,my mind was focussed on fishing. I really liked driving those backroads south/southwest/southeast of crowsnest,there was one road where i came upon a huge herd of cows and they wouldn't get off the road,so a chase ensued and i must have followed them for a couple kilometers before they ran off to the side.

mick range 10-19-2011 10:01 PM

Downclimbing that crux looks challenging in the photo. Looks like decent holds but lots of loose stuff no doubt but plenty of excellent scrambling. I haven't hung out in the Crowsnest area for at least 15 years now, it's still highly underrated and I thank you for the post

erratics 10-22-2011 07:11 PM

Beautiful shots of the Flathead range. It looks like you had a fantastic day for this. There's a lot of rock in your pictures. Did you come across any fossils?

MtnNinja 10-31-2011 07:53 PM

No, I didn`t come across any fossils.

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