Taking the afternoon off from work on 16 July 2004, I met up with Vern
Dewit and headed up the Icefields Parkway in Banff National Park to
scramble up Dolomite Peak. Starting from the trailhead at 3:14 PM,
we hiked for about 40 minutes along the good trail leading to Dolomite
Pass before heading up an obvious avalanche slope directly below towers 3
and 4 of Dolomite Peak. After a long slog up the slope, we
eventually reached the mouth of the gully separating the two towers.
Some lingering snow and ice in the gully forced us to scramble over some
steeper ledges, but we generally had no serious troubles getting up to
the top of tower 4 (true summit). Going up the gully, we
encountered three guys who were on their way down. Despite making
it that far up the mountain, only one of them succeeded in reaching the
summit while the other two were unnerved by the exposure. Speaking
of unnerving exposure, these three also happened to be scrambling in
their underwear! Now if only more women would do crazy things like
that... After signing the summit register, we both headed over to
tower 3 where Vern proceeded to devour what seemed like an endless number
of oranges magically appearing out of his pack. We essentially
retraced our steps for the descent and made it back to the trailhead at
Check out Vern's photos of this trip
||Vern hikes up the broad gully directly
below towers 3 and 4. Tower 2 is also visible at left.
||This is the basin leading to the gully
(centre) separating towers 3 and 4.
||These are the two guys who were
unnerved by the exposure, so to speak.
||Vern reaches the col separating towers
3 and 4. Click here to see
Vern's and Sonny's route up tower 4.
||Vern and Sonny stand on top of tower 4
(2782 metres). Vern is actually standing on the higher
||Vern checks out the summit register.
Tower 5 is visible behind him while snowy Mount Hector garners some
attention in the distance.
||Vern heads toward tower 3. While
Vern would traverse below the cliffs and head up the cleft just left
of centre, Sonny would prematurely scramble up the rock bands further
to the right only to find himself having to backtrack and follow
Vern's correct route.
||Vern relaxes beside the cairn on tower
3. Cirque Peak and Observation Peak are visible in the distance
behind tower 2.
||The headwaters of Dolomite Creek
invite further exploration.
||Vern descends a tricky step in the
||Vern emerges from the basin below
tower 4 (upper left) and descends some more rubble.
||Vern fords an icy Helen Creek on the