Elevation of 1750 m NET, 1842 m TOT and max 3052 m (3040 officially)
8 to 11 hours
This is a long, demanding, fun and beautiful scramble! I absolutely recommend it but try to do it snow free as it certainly made it more challenging for us with even just a bit of snow. You will do a lot of hands-on scramble, walk on a ledge and maybe some route finding depending on your experience. The rock is solid but I would recommend wearing a helmet for the few climbing sections. This is a difficult scramble technically if staying on the ridge but avoidable by finding an easier way on the left side whenever needed.
Follow the Hamilton Lake trail for about 5 km and over 850 m of elevation gain. Once at the lakeshore turn left and follow a trail bringing you to the grassy slope and just go up the first small drainage you meet up to the ridge. Once on the ridge, stick to it if you want to do some incredible hands-on scrambling, walk on a ledge with a bit of exposure and climb a wall on the left side of the ridge few minutes away to the summit. There are a lot of great cairns everywhere on the ridge but also on the left side of it. As it was slippery with the snow, we took the easiest way on the last few hundred metres by sidesloping from a gully to another (cairns everywhere there too) and then up the largest gully where you’ll see a big cairn showing you the way. Back up to the ridge, the summit is 2 minutes away on your left. If you’re staying on the ridge, you will see cairns leading you to a crest where climbing is necessary. We down climbed there on our way back and it was challenging, but doable. With all the elevation gain, distance, hands-on, exposure, etc. this makes a difficult and challenging scramble, one of the greatest we’ve done so far though.
From Field, drive west for 2.6 km and turn right on Emerald Lake Rd for another 9 km. Park at Emerald Lake Parking area and find the Hamilton Lake trailhead at the entrance of the parking.
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