Tunnel Mountain -- Jul 3, 2006

Elevation Gain: 300 meters (984 feet)

Climbed by: me, Cathy.

Okay, this isn't really a scramble, but it was a nice little hike to do with my wife Cathy. She's been having trouble with one of her knees so we didn't want to do something too crazy (or far from civilization) in case something went wrong.

Way back when, they were going to build a railway tunnel through this mountain, but a smarter guy found a better route for the trains and the original guy no doubt lost his job.

We drove to Banff and parked in the free parking lot on Bear Street, quickly located the parking lot where the trail head is, just below the Banff Center, and started heading up.

We took a shortcut at first, since we weren't too sure where we were going, and one of the signs that probably said "Keep On Path!" was missing. We crossed the road, and went up some more.

Near the top we ran into a nice French Canadian family. Their son was working in Banff for the summer, and he was thinking about climbing Mount Rundle. He was young and fit, so probably wouldn't have any trouble, though I suggested he try a smaller peak to make sure his boots were broken in, his pack fit right, and that his knees wouldn't get too wobbly. I doubt he took my advice.

At the top we had a nice chat with a lady who was out visiting her sister from Ontario.

We headed back down to the car where I changed into something a little more presentable than the MEC scrambling gear I was wearing, and we stopped in at the Maple Leaf Grille. The food was excellent, the service was excellent, and the prices were only a little bit on the high side -- considerably lower than I expected they'd be, given this was a reasonably fancy place in Banff! I will definitely eat there again!

The Banff Springs Hotel.
The Banff Springs from a bit higher up.
The Banff townsite. You can see a train coming!
The Bow River, as it runs by the Banff Springs Golf Course.
The Golf Course, and the UFO-shaped clubhouse. Fancy!
Mount Rundle.
A strange man, with Rundle in the background.
The strange man with his lovely wife, and Rundle.
The strange man (and his lovely wife who is taking his picture) made it to the top!!