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First recorded ascent of Mount Aerosol
Timestamp Free: 2020.01.21 - 20:02:00
Ranges: North America Ranges / Rocky Mountains / Canadian Rockies / Continental Ranges / Front Ranges / Vermilion Range
(1 days) Elevation Gain: 1200m
Participants: Paul and Warren Finlay
Despite apocalyptic skies caused by forest fires in B.C., and air quality index warnings to avoid strenuous outdoor exercise, we set out to see if we could find a way to the top of GR934-790, listed as Unnamed Peak (V2) and "no recorded ascent" on p. 171 of Rockies Central by David Jones (2015). Parking at Mount Norquay ski hill near Banff, we followed the ski hill maintenance road in the predawn darkness heading NNW to reach the Forty Mile Creek trail, uphill from the Spirit Chair lift base. Descending to Forty Mile Creek on its namesake trail, we passed the backcountry campsite Fm10 (Mount Cockscomb) and shortly thereafter came to a drainage at GR 918-776 that comes down from the first valley north of Mount Brewster on the west side of the Vermillion Range. Leaving the trail, we headed up the creek bed. We quickly came to first one and then a second waterfall that both involved 5-10 meters of 3rd class scrambling, after which the drainage eventually opened up into a wide cirque rimmed by 4th and 5th class slopes. A gully could be seen on the north side of the cirque, which we followed without difficulty on broken class 2 slopes directly to the summit.
[photo]20180818_111541.jpg[caption]Looking north along the Vermillion Range from summit GR934-790. Heavy smoke from forest fires in B.C. made for a very poor view.[/photo] No cairn was present on the summit, so we placed a small one. Dense atmospheric aerosol (i.e. smoke) from forest fires made views nonexistent, but brought to mind a name for this summit: Mount Aerosol. The smoke was so thick that we could not see Mount Cockscomb, Fifi or Louis, and had only dim outlines of Mount Brewster and we could only make out a couple peaks north of us on the Vermillion Range. The average reading of our two GPS units gave a...
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