20140418: Castleguard Mountain via Saskatchewan Glacier

Seven of us from K7 Climbing (Ray, Robert, Brandon, Mike, Jun, Morgan and me) decided to spend Easter long weekend on the glacier. The intent was to camp at the Big Bend parking lot Thursday night, head to base camp between Andromeda and Castleguard Friday, climb Andromeda Saturday and Castleguard Sunday combined with the 12k walk out. Unfortunately weather and avy conditions prevented us from attempting Andromeda, and conditions and visibility hampered our bid of Castleguard. We made it 400m from the Castleguard summit but… A good weekend nonetheless.

We parked at Big Bend and walked through the floodplain up the Saskatchewan glacier
We parked at Big Bend and walked through the floodplain up the Saskatchewan glacier
Spent first night sleeping at Big Bend parking lot
Left Calgary at 7pm. Spent first night sleeping at Big Bend parking lot, in the bed of Ray’s truck (the rest chose the trailer or Mike’s truck). We could peek our heads out of the sleeping bag for some very fresh air and mountain views…
Heading out on a snowy morning
Heading out on a snowy morning
Coming out of the trees and onto the floodplain
Coming out of the trees and onto the floodplain
Approaching the foot of the Saskatchewan Glacier
Approaching the foot of the Saskatchewan Glacier
I was on the rope team with Mike and Brandon (team purple!).
I was on the rope team with Mike and Brandon (team purple!). The others were on a second rope (team green!)
Looking back down the glacier.
Weather forecast called for rain and snow. So far, a beautiful day. Looking back down the glacier.

 

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moraine in between Castleguard and Andromeda.
We chose to set up base camp on a moraine in between Castleguard and Andromeda.
Efforts to keep hydrated. View from our vestibule/ cook pit.
Efforts to keep hydrated. View from our vestibule/ cook pit.
Snow starting to come in.
View of our camp from the bathroom area! Snow starting to come in.
... And the weather turns. and stays this way until morning.
… And the weather turns. and stays this way until morning.
Jun digs himself a cook shelter
The next day Jun digs himself a cook shelter
Morning!
Morning!

Because of the conditions we decided to head to Castleguard instead of Andromeda.

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Due to lack of visibility we decided to turn around… And now that Andromeda is off the table, the consensus is to pack up and head home. Making that a total of around 34k in 2 days. There’s some talk of coming back in the fall…

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