Iceline trail
An overnight on the stunning Iceline Trail in Yoho.


We headed up Waterfall Valley to Laughing Falls, then looped around Twin Falls and Marpole Lake with daypacks, unfortunately skipping the whaleback.
The next day, we retraced a little west, then continued on into Little Yoho Valley, and back out along the length of the Iceline.

Marta, Marshall, Laurier, and Rachel set out to do the iceline trail in an overnight trip, but due to our late decision, the common campgrounds at Twin Falls and Little Yoho Valley were booked up. Excercising a little creativity, we made plans to stay at Laughing Falls, and did the trail in a somewhat different direction than usual.

The first leg of day one was an easy trek up Waterfall Valley to our campground at Laughing Falls - which would be our fourth waterfall of the day.

Marta, Marshall, Rachel, and Laurier at the trailhead.

Takakkaw Falls from the trailhead.

Looking into the waterfall valley.

Angel's Staircase Falls on the other side of the valley.

First close waterfall - Point Lace Falls.

The raging Yoho river.

A cascade in the main river.

Yoho river near the Laughing Falls campsite.

Trolltinder Mountain.

We got a late start out of the city, so it was getting late despite our good time on the trail up.
Setting up camp as quickly as possible, we switched to small packs and headed further along the valley to loop around Twin Falls and the Whaleback before returning for dinner.

First glimpse of Twin Falls in the distance

Pretty cascade through a canyon below Twin Falls.

Twin Falls from the viewpoint.

Closer shot of Twin Falls.

Twin Falls and outflow stream.

Wispy falls from beside.

Bottom of the falls.

The water hits with an enormous power, but there is almost no pool.

Water-turned-mist over the valley below.

Mount Balfour behind Trolltinder Mountain.

??, Balfour, and Trolltinder

Mount Balfour.

Outlier of Balfour peeking around.

After getting to Twin Falls and the chalet below, we found our time running short.
In hopes of getting back to the campsite (and eating dinner!) at a reasonable time, we chose to forego the Whaleback trail.
The Marpole connecter cut off a few kilometres, and a fair amount of elevation. Pretty lake as well.

Marshall jumping a pole near the Twin Falls chalet.

Laurier tries to climb up.

Laurier.

Marshall.

Reflection in Marpole Lake.

Confluence of the Little Yoho and Yoho rivers, near Laughing Falls.
These rivers flow beside each other for a bit before the colours mix.

dinner.

...

Looking north up the valley as the night falls.

Sunday morning we slowly got up, ate, and packed, then headed out for the day.
In reverse from most parties, we were today heading through Little Yoho Valley, and then back over the iceline.

Laughing Falls on the much sunnier Sunday morning.

Laughing Falls.

Laurier, Marshall, and Marta heading up the trail towards Little Yoho valley.

After an initial steep bit, it was a quick hike over to Little Yoho Valley.
We stopped for a snack near the Stanley Mitchell Hut - a very nicely placed ACC shelter.
It's a pretty valley, and unsuprising that most people choose to stay here.
We had no such time, but Kiwetinok Lake/Pass/Peak looks like a nice sidetrip for those who do.

Little Yoho river valley, from just south of the Stanley Mitchell hut.

The Vice President from Little Yoho valley.

Laurier takes a break.

Columbian Ground Squirrel (spermophilus columbianus).

Columbian Ground Squirrel (gopher)

Gopher refuses to believe Laurier has no food for him.

Gopher decides to try stealing from Laurier's backpack instead.

Gopher investigates Mookie.

Cows are scary.

Marshall scares off the gophers.

Laurier figures to add some extra protein to his snack.

Beyond Little Yoho, the trail begins to climb again, gradually making its way up along The Presidents.
Once on top, the views really opened up, and I can see why this trail gets the press it does.
Our terribly late start gave us one nice benefit, despite our late finish time -
we didn't see a single person the entire length of the iceline.

Trail climbs below The Vice President.

Cresting the trail.

Glacial tarn and Mounts Daly and Niles across the Yoho valley.

Another tarn.

Trail winds up some loose rock.

Group photo below a remnant glacier.

Stream flowing into yet another tarn.

One of the many glacier bits now detatched from Emerald.

The iceline trail is home to one of the typical high volume problems - cairns.
As in, every few metres, someone else has felt the need to stack three rocks to no useful end.
One interesting break is a neat spot in which is found large chunks of a black rock lying on white slabs.
At this point, the cairns are consolidated into an interesting cairn field with a number of really well-done structures.

A neat step-like outcropping of black rock.

The field of cairns and other buildings.

Our contribution.

Takakkaw Falls from the trail.

Marshall coming down the rainforest-like last section of the trail.

We got off the iceline trail just as dusk really set in, and drove the three hours home in the dark.

Alpenglow on mountains across the valley.

Heal-All (prunella vulgaris).

Heal-All (prunella vulgaris).

Fringed Grass-of-Parnassus (parnassia fimbriata).

Pearly Everlasting (anaphalis margaritacea).

Neat beads of water on a shrub.

Cool coloured rock #1.

Cool colourful rock #2.

Photos taken by Rachel.

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