This scramble is really good for hikers who wants to be initiated to what would be considered more of a scramble. It's short, it's steep and has great views of Kananaskis Valley after only 20-30 minutes.
Technicality: For hikers and beginner scramblers Difficulty: Moderate, steepness
Trail description: It is an easy trail to follow, obvious most of the time. You will have some trails going on your right, be careful as they will get you into gullies with more exposure. If you think that it's more of a difficult scramble than an easy one, you're on the wrong trail. Go back and find the right path.
From the trailhead starting on the left side of Ripple Creek, you always want to be on the right side of the peak, as you will get around the peak to the slope in the back, where you'll get to the col for a final ascent. You gain elevation fast for the first 1.5 km I would say, then it's an horizontal line between the peak and the gullies until you get to that steep slope to the col. Once on the summit, you can walk the ridge, approximately 200 m to add to your hike. You can choose to have no exposure or walk it straight on with some exposure at 2 different places overall.
Direction: From Highway 1, it's approximately 46 km down South on Highway 40 in Kananaskis. As soon as you see Grizzly Creek on your left, the small unnamed creek that people call Ripple creek is where you want to make a U-turn and park in the ditch. I simply decided to go up to Hood Creek and made a U-Turn, came back on the side of the road, I couldn't miss Ripple Creek then.
Park on Highway 40 at Ripple Creek located just south of Grizzly Creek (about 4.4km North of the winter gates at Peter Lougheed Provincial Park).
Trail start and follows the north side of Ripple Creek
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Posted By: mud113
- Sat Jul 05 21:57:35 EDT 2014
UpsideIncredible views of Kananaskis A fun hike with a good introduction to scrambling for beginners
DownsideA steep hike to the top Minor exposure at the summit
CommentI don't know why the Description portion says that this trail is 65 km, but I assure you it's only about 6 km round trip.
This trail is a nice quiet hike due to it not being a marked trail along the road, so only people who have done their research will likely know about it. This is great because it's not crowded with people.
The first third of the hike is a pretty steep hike up and will require you to hike up some minor scree portions as well as scramble along a rock wall. This is a really great introduction to scrambling for beginners because the trail requires you to scramble this section. It's very brief and easy and there isn't any exposure (but if you fell you may hurt yourself). Once past this part there's a bit more climbing until you flatten out for a bit. The hike along here is quite beautiful and the views of Kananaskis keep getting better as you get higher.
Once you hit the flat portion of the trail you need to make sure you keep an eye out for where the trail forks to the left and up. I missed this the first two times I attempted this trail, thus requiring three attempts to hike it. The problem is the trail keeps going straight after this fork and if you follow it you eventually hit a dead end. Fortunately it's an easy hike back if you miss the fork, but it's very easy to miss the trail where it forks if you're not looking for it.
Once you hit the fork and head up you're in for a steep climb the rest of the way. It's important to remember that as you get higher you eventually reach a point where it appears the trail kind of fades away, but if you look to the right you'll faintly see a trail that goes up to the top of the ridge. Whatever you do, don't stay to the left and attempt to go up the scree slope to the ridge. We did this because we weren't sure which trail to take and it was hell going up all the loose scree to the top. So remember, you need to cross the dry creek bed and then go up the rest of the way.
From here it's smooth sailing until you hit the summit, but those with a fear of heights may be a bit uncomfortable with some of the minor exposure at the top. That being said the views are breathtaking at the top.
Posted By: ChrisMarry
- Mon Oct 07 21:53:05 EDT 2013
UpsideViews very soon in the hike, good training, steep, short
DownsideSo windy most of the trail, be prepared, extra clothes...
CommentI did Grizzly peak for the first time today, I had the peak for myself! I like to make mistakes... I made a couple for sure again! On the way up, all good and easy trail, you can't miss it. Once at the scree slopes, I decided to cut through the rockbands. There was snow, mud, dirt, trees, scree. Not a good idea, as exposure was there and I had no good grip or foothold most of the time. I cut probably 300 m that way, but I took the right path on my way down I tell you. I would suggest that you make the ridge walk from one end to the other, it's nice and easy. Views of the mountain beside the peak on the West side are stunning!
Elevation gain is 877 m with max elevation 2534 m.