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Alexandra from the upper slopes of Fresnoy Mountain # 15133

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Date: 2011.08.01
Vantage Point: From the lower slopes of the southwest ridge of Fresnoy Mountain

Caption: The northwest face of Mount Alexandra

PhotoDescr: We ascended Coral Peak as part of a long traverse of two significant mountains on our second day of the ACC (Calgary) section camp in South Spring Rice Brook for 2011: we were up early and off once again up the headwall, part of it by headlamp; but once at the top, we headed right around the base of Coral Peak on a shelf with a good path to the east Alexandra glacier. Easy cramponing from there up to the West Alexandra basin - this was the wide glacial basin that Reg Bonney and I had trucked across fourteen years earlier when we climbed Fresnoy but in a whiteout had mistaken it for Queens. Easily then up the steep snow of the east face of Coral and a fine march on a narrow ridge to the summit, all of this under brilliant sunshine and a bluebird sky. This photo was taken just below the steep snow section on Coral.

We actually traversed over Coral from south to north and then descended, with some minor exposure, to the ridge that extends off to towers on the far left (out of sight); we descended slightly below the towers and continued to traverse snow pillows on the far side, eventually regaining the broad southwest snow slope of Fresnoy - this is where we started having serious problems since the snow was so deep and so mushed up that we were post-holing most of the remaining elevation to the base of the summit block.

The broad, although severely tilted, snow ramp that rises to the left and then out of the photograph is the approach route we took a few days later during our ascent of Queens Peak.

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