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Mount Alexandra and Fresnoy Mountain
Timestamp Free: 2019.10.18 - 21:29:49
Ranges: North America Ranges / Rocky Mountains / Canadian Rockies / Continental Ranges / Park Ranges
Participants: Reg Bonney; Rick Collier
Difficulty: 3: Terrible bushwhack on approach (5.14). The climb is pleasant alpine slopes and steep but easy snow/rock on both summits.
A climb of Mount Alexandra and Fresnoy Mountain. The approach was via Lyell Creek,and the bush was thick.
World's Worst Bushwhack and Alpine Botch-up: in the period from July 19 through 22, we managed to ascend two peaks, one of them being Mt. Alexandra (11,114 ft./3389m); the other we'd rather forget. However, climbing the peaks themselves was the simple part of the trip; getting to them was the real bummer. So, anyone planning summer ascents in the area, take note: the final 3 km up Lyell Crk to the intersection with Whiterose Crk (running N), as well as the first 3 or so km up this second creek, constitute the bushwhack from hell: crisscrossed fallen timber, tangled and knotted alders, and thick stands of eight-foot devil's club are only some of the delights to greet the unwitting climber. It took us two 13-hr days of very serious effort to reach our high camp at the base of Alexandra. One should be sure to take a fold-out saw; better yet take two or three; better still, do these climbs in the winter (unless, of course, you're from B.C., where misery like this will seem to be child's play).
On the third day we ascended Alexandra easily, but our attempt on Queens went badly awry (See Queens): when we reached the Alexandra/Whiterose col on descent, thick cloud moved in; displaying unwarranted bravado, we continued across the Spring Rice glacier and, after considerable step-kicking, post-holing, and route-guessing in the mist, reached a summit and left a register. However, once we had crossed back over the glacier -- this time in rain, sleet, and lightning -- and the weather had cleared, we realized, aha!, that we'd ascended Fresnoy (10,630 ft./ 3241m), not Queens. We are appropriately humiliated. (See Fresnoy).
********** It is probably also worth mentioning that I had climbed this peak several years earlier, but in the winter. The...
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