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The Iceline Trail, Yoho NP


Peter
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Did the Iceline Trail last summer with a group of seven people from the Edmonton area. The trail is in Yoho National Park, just past Lake Louise.

We met at Whiskey Jack Hostel on Friday evening (nice - hot showers and flush toilets!) and left the TH at 9:00. The trail begins with a short section that ascends quickly through the trees. We passed two junctions - stay right at both. Only 250 meters of elevation gain and you quickly pop out into a much more open environment with loose rock, stunted growth and lots of ankle-twisting boulders. Last chance for a discreet pee-break. Nice views of the Yoho Valley and Takakkaw Falls (254 meters) far below.

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There is a long traverse that adds maybe another few hundred meters of elevation gain, and we took our time, enjoying the views and the interesting terrain.

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Then we came to a corner, and one by one, we stopped to gawk. The glaciers come at you unexpectedly, and the entire expanse extends far ahead of you.

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The trail is great, and it leads you on past each new ridge, across each new stream and to yet another glacier. Spectacular views all around. Glaciers as far as the eye can see, and two peaks, the President and the Vice-President above, and the whole Yoho Valley below.

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We eventually stopped when the trail began to drop back down and had our lunch at what we figured was the highest ridge at about 750 meters above the TH. Almost close enough to the glacier to touch it, and a view to remember for the rest of our lives.

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Met on the trail: An entire tour group from France...

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...that caused a mini traffic jam on top of one of the outlooks. They were more outdoor adventurers than tourons - fairly fit and with decent equipment - and excited about their trip through the Rockies. We also bumped into three women, with ropes, axes, helmets and other heavy duty gear, who said they'd just come down from the President.

Back down again...

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...and we joined the rest of the tourists for an evening walk at Takakkaw Falls.

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Edited by Peter
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