Three-night Wapta Traverse: Bow Hut -- Balfour Hut -- Scott Duncan Hut
This trip will be a three-night version of the classic Wapta Traverse aimed at folks who have skied fairly regularly in the backcountry & will have been skied a number of days prior to the trip, but are newer to hut based trips. Preference will be given to active participants in the BITS program in the last few years who meet the prereqs.
Our aim will be to travel at a moderate pace, and provide a chance for participants to gain knowledge about packing/preparing for hut-based trips via at least one pre-trip meeting/Zoom meeting. If there are participants who have not skied roped up before, we will try to do a pre-trip day (or evening in the city) to go over rope/crevasse skills.
All three huts are ACC huts with propane cooking facilities and outhouses. At Bow Hut, there is a separate 30 person bunk room and a wood burning stove for heat & melting snow. The other two huts are single room with propane stoves & lights. Everyone is expected to share chores - melting snow for water, stocking wood, chopping kindling, preparing group meals etc.
Cooking facilities are limited (especially in Balfour & Scott Duncan) & we will be sharing the huts with other groups, so the intention is to do group dinners (dehydrated). Please let the coordinator know if you have any allergies/limitations/sensitivities. Participants are responsible for their own breakfasts, lunches & snacks. Breakfasts should be easy & quick to prepare - boil in a bag or one dish (oatmeal etc.).
There will be four spots open for participants and one for another trip leader/experienced hut trip skier.
Skiers and splitboarders are welcome, but note that this is a traverse, so splitboarders should be competent/efficient in skiing split & making transitions.
AST1 (AST 2 is great, but not required)
Crevasse rescue course
Sufficient ski skills to ski with a multi-day pack for four days in a variety of terrain and while roped up (the fun begins!).
Very strongly suggested to have your own gear -- if you have to rent gear, this should NOT be your first time on the gear for the season. You need to have all gear properly fitted/adjusted prior to the trip -- broken or ill fitting gear is a safety issue for the whole group.
We will need to leave at least one car at the end point (Sherbrooke Lake trailhead), and leave bright and early for the hut. Thus it is strongly suggested that the group stay in Lake Louise the night before. Availability is already quite tight at the hostel, so let me know your preference as soon as you sign up (cancellations for hostel beds can be made up to 2 days in advance).
Conditions permitting, we will depart bright and early on the 18th for Bow Hut, allowing for plenty of time to get to the hut, good choice of bunk spaces and the possibility of a bit of skiing in the afternoon. Or relaxing in front of the wood burning stove in the hut! Departure time will depend on whether we need to set up the shuttle that morning or can do it Friday evening.
The trip will only run if the weather/avalanche conditions are appropriate to the group. The leader(s) will make the call by the evening of February 16 (or earlier to allow hostel cancellations if the forecast is clearly looking non-compatible that far in advance).
$145 - includes three nights of hut bookings/backcountry permits. Any hostel or other accommodation in Lake Louise (or elsewhere) will be extra.
If you are interested, please sign up for the waitlist. If you have not skied with the coordinator in the last year, please send a brief ski resume (BITS participants should know how to do this!) to the coordinator (email@example.com). Acceptance to the trip will be at the discretion of the coordinator, not first come first served. Once you have been accepted, you will receive notice to pay - and once payment is received you will be confirmed. Please read the cancellation info carefully.