Tag Archives: hiking

Waterfalls — Poboktan

Waterfalls — Poboktan: Off-trail fashion.

There I was, at the horse gate just before Water­falls camp­ground. My plan was to ascend a steep slope along the creek (left side climber view). The pine for­est was quite open with few dead­falls on the ground, I quick­ly got to the top.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

Once there, trav­el­ling was easy. Keep­ing with­in earshot of the creek I nav­i­gat­ed effort­less­ly in the mixed for­est. The moss cush­ion was a lit­tle thick­er yet progress was fast as there were open lines all along. In time I came to a bot­tle­neck and got back to the creek, soon I was cross­ing in search of new­ly col­o­nized ground where the veg­e­ta­tion made walk­ing thru the low­er mead­ows much eas­i­er. The mis­sion: escape the wil­lows if I could.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

My goal was to get to the top of the val­ley. From there on I could ascend a shoul­der towards a sis­ter of Mt-Pobok­tan, and while I nev­er rushed any­thing I got there ear­ly, set­ting camp with plen­ty of time to spare. There was a great gold­en hour in the mak­ing and the light was per­fect.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

The next day I went up a ramp, it took me about two and a half hours to get to the top. There where great views on the Water­fall Peaks and even bet­ter ones down towards the Swan Lakes (unof­fi­cial name). It would take me anoth­er day and a half to get to the lakes.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

An easy tra­verse below the peak got me smack in front of Poboktan’s North face; and while I made my way down on a mod­er­ate­ly steep rib it seemed to grow taller and taller. I took a break by a tarn; and those who know the moun­tains won’t be sur­prised to learn that every­thing was still­ness.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

Down the steep mead­ows and fol­low­ing the creek, I wait­ed until the bank got steep­er. I then cut into anoth­er easy pine for­est. No point to stay high up as I knew I would soon face a nasty rock slide sev­er­al km long. So, once again I fol­lowed the col­o­niza­tion line and made my way near the Brazeau. Not being fond of silty water I pre­ferred stay­ing on the rock side where I found a creek emerg­ing from the under­ground. It’s water was per­fect. Camp­ing in the shad­ow of an errat­ic, I could hear the song of a riv­er less than a hun­dred meters away.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

The next day came a long chal­leng­ing angling up val­ley. Fol­low­ing the rock slide and hug­ging the for­est I crossed numer­ous errat­ic fields, most of them filled with debris. Wise peo­ple would have fol­lowed the riv­er instead, but since I am not one of them I went up the hard way. I gained ele­va­tion labo­ri­ous­ly and the views got spec­tac­u­lar. Grey lime­stone walls across the val­ley, silty blue waters, the deep green of the pines in between; and a cou­ple of tiny azure lakes dot­ting the land­scape. Once the rock slide sub­sided, the for­est took over once again. Not want­i­ng to get cliffed out I stayed on a bench, then there was this amaz­ing water­fall. I was mak­ing progress, slow­ly.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

I knew exact­ly the way to the lakes, the famil­iar sight of a gigan­tic errat­ic marked the way, but before I went up the drainage (left side climber view) I caught glimpses of the majes­tic NW Brazeau gorge. That’s a trip I did ear­li­er in the sum­mer, com­ing in the oth­er way.

A glacial flat, and not so far in the dis­tance the low­er of the lakes. Near­ing the end of August the mead­ows where ripe, you could almost smell the fast approach­ing fall. A mag­ic gold­en hour lat­er I was more than like­ly snor­ing in my tent.
Up just before the sun­rise, guess what I did for the first hour? I had lots of time to spare so I packed up and went to one of the mid­dle lakes from where I tack­led a drainage up to about 2800 m. I want­ed to be on the oth­er side before the end of the day and at about four pm I strapped my pack on and crossed over the col. Anoth­er camp­site, with such a late start I near­ly missed per­fect light time.

Pobokton
Pobok­ton

Every­thing from there on is casu­al. It took me about two hours to pick my way down in a some­what nasty Engel­mann spruce for­est (down the creek right side climber view), and then the riv­er flat to the faint Swan pass trail, and fresh griz­zly drop­pings. Once back on the Pobok­tan trail there was only eight km to go. I got back to the car on the ear­ly side of a beau­ti­ful August day. I had been away for six days.

My boots nev­er got wet.

Gaston Synnott
Gas­ton Syn­nott — Author

This sto­ry is brought you by Gas­ton Syn­nott, thank you for shar­ing your expe­ri­ence with us and hope it will moti­vate some oth­ers to get out and enjoy the back coun­try of #myjasper #jaspernp #explore­jasper.  We wel­come more of these sto­ries, so feel free to con­tact us and sub­mit your adven­tures!


RELATED LINKS:

Wilcox Lake

Exploring the Wilcox area

Won­der­ful hike off the Wilcox trail, a lake hid­den behind some ridges. It was nice to see hid­den gems like these. I don’t think we saw this in a hike book when we decid­ed to do this trek. Word of mouth in around town amongst the like mind­ed crowd is prob­a­bly how we got here.

Elevation start at 1900 meters
Ele­va­tion start at 1900 meters
Wilcox area map
Wilcox area map

Trail­head park­ing for the south bound­ary trail or the camp­sites in the area. Most choose the trail­head from Wilcox to access this lake, how­ev­er,  you can access via Tan­go Falls from the north.

Wilcox view of the Athabasca Icefield
Wilcox view of the Athabas­ca Ice­field

Spec­tac­u­lar view right from the start of the trail.

Ptarmigan or Grouse?
Ptarmi­gan or Grouse?

Wilcox-lake_20120730_5785

This area retain snow slopes year round
This area retain snow slopes year round
Wilcox Lake
Wilcox Lake

RELATED LINKS:

Cinqfoil Mountain

False summits after false summits

Cinq­foil moun­tain is  a inter­est­ing hike, it does not seem long, but it pret­ty well takes a whole day to sum­mit when you final­ly hit the peak. The hike starts off low and some what wet if the marsh is high. The year we did this hike has high water in the marsh and the beavers were busy, so the trail was wet until you start climb­ing.

Cinqfoil Mountain Jasper Hiking with Friends
Cinq­foil Moun­tain Jasper Come back to us!
Cinqfoil Mountain Jasper Hiking with Friends
Cinq­foil Moun­tain Jasper Head stand
Cinqfoil Mountain Jasper Hiking with Friends
Cinq­foil Moun­tain Jasper Hik­ing with Friends
Cinqfoil Mountain Jasper Hiking with Friends
Cinq­foil Moun­tain Jasper Hik­ing with Friends

The trail fol­lows the ridge line like big giant steps. Beau­ti­ful views once you clear tree line. Even before tree­line, the ridge clear­ing still affords you some nice open­ings.

Cinqfoil Mountain Jasper Hiking with Friends
Cinq­foil Moun­tain Jasper High Jump

A clear won­der­ful day to explore this trail, August is the warmest  time of year in Jasper, so get out there and enjoy.  Thanks to my mod­els, Kyle M.(actor on “Haven” tv show), Melis­sa W., and Miyoko I. and Ryan D.

August, 2006
Eddie Wong

Cinqfoil Flower - Five petals
Cinq­foil Flower — Five petals

Any of numer­ous herbs or shrubs of the genus Poten­til­la, of the North Tem­per­ate Zone, hav­ing pin­nate­ly or palmate­ly com­pound leaves and yel­low, white, or red flow­ers with many pis­tils.

BUNGALOWS / CABINS

BACKCOUNTRY CABINS