Mount Cory

After a halt for two hours during the most intense heat, we again started and crossed over a low point of rocks, close to the river, where we entered the second great valley, which is of magnificent proportions. Along the eastern side runs a wall of vertical beds, of light grey limestone, the serrated edges of which at once suggested the name of Sawback Range for them.

-from James Hector’s Journal -17 August, 1858.

This scramble begins at a pullout just under 2km from the southern end of the Bow Valley Parkway (1A), west of Banff. From the pullout, one follows an obvious path up a rib of the mountain, leading to the south ridge. Views are almost immediate, and the upturned limestone of the Sawback Range makes for interesting, if easy scrambling throughout the upper part of the journey. The typical early season cornice is still retreating, however a slightly circuitous route can be made to avoid it and reach the north peak. Overall this was a highly enjoyable scramble in one of my favourite Rocky Mountain ranges.

Route description from Alan Kane's 'Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies'
Route description from Alan Kane’s ‘Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies’
02
I made an error right off the bat and followed the wrong path west to a dead end. Nice.
03
Views open up almost immediately. This image was taken less than 30 minutes after leaving the parking area.
04
Looking back along the south ridge, Mount Bourgeau and the Sundance Range in the background.
05
A good example of how the Sawback Range got its name.
06
The south summit becomes visible to the upper left
07
Looking down on the Bow Valley corridor.
08
North summit from the south summit
09
South summit from the north summit (they are equal in height)
10
Looking north along the Sawback Range, including Mounts Fifi and Brewster
11
The stunning Mount Louis just below me and Gargoyle Valley (Cory and Edith Pass circuit is a great hike as well!)
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