July 31, 2011
Lake Louise, AB
Fairview Mountain is one of those “super duper popular” scrambles nearby the tourists’ center – Lake Louise. There’s essentially a beaten path all the way to the summit and there’s not really much to introduce. The name of this peak indicates pretty well what to expect on a clear day. Note that the official name of this peak is Fairview Mountain but Alan Kane referred it as “Mt. Fairview” in his scramble book leading to some degree of confusion regarding the name. I myself always prefer the official name.
Weather deteriorated on the second day of this past August long weekend after a very scenic ascent of Tangle Ridge near the Columbia Icefield. It was raining in the morning at the campground so my parents and I drove all the way down south to Lake Louise in hope for some better weather. One big lesson for this day was, never go to Lake Louise in long weekend after 8 AM… Well, you might know what I’m talking about, and yes, it took us a good half an hour or so to find a parking spot… That was a frustrating way to start a day… There’s nothing to say about the hike up Fairview. Initially we followed the steep trail up to Saddleback Pass. My parents got exhausted at the pass and I proceeded up the mountain solo. There were tens of tourists hiking up Fairview on that day so it wasn’t actually a “solo” ascent. It started to shower before I reached the summit and thankfully the shower quickly passed by.
It was too crowded on the summit so after some obligatory pictures I decided to head down. Instead of going down the scree gully, I retraced my steps down the normal hiking trail, which obviously was longer. But I wasn’t too comfortable on loose ground by that time so this seemed like a safer choice. I wasn’t really a peak-bagger at that time so I didn’t tick-off the nearby Saddle Mountain. We re-grouped together and hiked down the Saddleback Trail with tens of tourists.
At the end of the day we opted to kill some hours around Lake Louise’s lakeshore in order not to get caught in the horrible traffic. I really really hate getting caught in the traffic and Lake Louise is a particularly horrible place in the long weekend…