Mt. Indefatigable possesses a gigantic slab that simply begs to be climbed. The rock quality is above average to stellar. The classic Joy (5.6, 10 pitches) route is the trade route and most people's objective. The Shining Path (5.7R?) shares the first pitch or two with Joy, then heads over the dihedral and onto the upper slab to follow a similar, yet smaller dihedral. Both routes have loose stone that accumulates on ledges and climbing under another party would be a poor decision. There is MUCH more loose rock on The Shining Path. Joy has many "hiding spots" if it gets windy and rocks come down. Joy also cleans up a bit after the season starts and it get's some traffic to clear off the loose stones on the ledges.
NO FIXED ANCHORS means retreating from either route would mean leaving a bunch of gear at best and downright terrifying if weather moved in and started spitting rocks down the face, which would be inevitable. So check the weather and plan accordingly.
The approach is a fairly easy with a hike on a flat trail for most of it followed by an uphill scree slog (45 minutes car-to-route). The descent isn't that bad either and there are two options. Bring bear spray as the main descent trail is permanently "recommended" closed due to "prime grizzly habitat". An alternate descent from both routes to avoid the "bear habitat" is a scree shoot that isn't terrible if the party descends together to minimize rockfall hazard. It's not nearly as easy as the Yam scree skiing, so be prepared to go slower. See route descriptions for descent info.
The GPS point for this page is spot on for the area. Park at the Interlakes Parking area.
From Calgary: Take Kananaskis Trail/AB-40 S for 50.0 km Turn right onto Smith Dorrien Trail/Hwy 742 for 2.2 km Slight left onto Kananaskis Lakes Trail for 7.6 km Turn right to stay on Kananaskis Lakes Trail for 3.6 km Slight left to stay on Kananaskis Lakes Trail Park at the Interlakes Parking Area
or Google "Kananaskis Interlakes Campground" and it'll pull up right near the lake parking area.
Hike across the dam and follow the main hikers trail that parallels he lake. Do not go up past the bear closure sign on the summit trail. The approach trail is pretty flat all the way to the scree slope when the route becomes very apparent. Don't follow any smaller offshoot trails that head downhill to the lakeshore, just follow the signs with hiker symbols on them. It's pretty straightforward. 25 minutes to scree slope from car. Head up the scree to the base of the route.
Approach: 45 minutesClimb: 3 - 6 hoursDescent: 1.5 - 3 hours Car-to-Car: 5 - 9 hoursSun: late morning through afternoonJoy follows the incredibly striking right facing dihedral up the Mt. Indefatigable slab for nearly 2000 feet (300m)of climbing! The rock is generally very solid with excellent friction. The numerous small ledges do tend to accumulate rocks, so be wary, especially in early season. There are many very nice belays to choose from on almost every pitch. Some take a 70m rope to...[more]Browse More Classics in International