Glacier Lake
An overnight trip around Saskatchewan Crossing


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Distance - 8.9km Elevation - 210m up, 225m down on the way in, opposite on reverse.
2 hours, 35min (moving) hike in, 2 hours, 26min hike out. ~1 more hour stopped each way.

There is actually a net elevation loss, but overall, you ascend a while, then descend, crossing one broad ridge above the Howse River.

Ths is a relatively low-elevation trail, and tends to melt out fairly early, making it a good early-season option.
Laurier, Neil, and I did an easy spring overnight, taking it pretty casual.
The first section of trail rolls through the forest, crossing the Saskatchewan River, then rises slightly to an open hillside overlooking the meandering Howse River.

Laurier and Neil look over the Saskatchewan River.

The Saskatchewan River coming in from the north.

Laurier and Neil look up the Howse River valley.

The House River valley with Forbes group at the back.

From the viewpoint, the trail descends briefly to cross a small stream, then ascends up and over the hillside, and back down to the lake.
When we arrived at the lake, it was sunny out, but over the evening, the wind picked up until it howled across the lake, whipping up some pretty decent lake rapids.

The campground is awful. It's right on the lakeshore, and while pretty, the wind howls down the lake, and straight through the full campsite. There is no shelter.
There is an old cabin-hut a bit back and up a hill, and we had dinner there, using the bit of breakwall it provided to cut down on the wind. This seems popular.
There are also no tent sites. The only one or two spots with remotely flat ground are immediately beside the picnic tables.
We saw a few tents set up there, encouraged by the flat ground, and clearly clueless on the proper way to set up a backcountry campsite.
We managed to find a spot that was not too slanted, but overall, there are no real spaces, and it was unfortunate for us to have gotten "the last space",
when we'd have actually found it easier to bring in a one-man and a two-man tent rather than the single three-man we brought to fit in that imaginary last tent site.
Because of the way the wind howls off the lake and the fact that the cooksite is on the lakeshore, any possible tensite is also downwind from the food smells.

Overall, it's terribly frustrating to pay backcountry fees to the National Park and reach a campground so poorly-designed and lacking.
It's a nice place, but not one I'd suggest lingering in. Good for this sort of early-season quickie overnight.

Small bridge over a lovely cool creek.

The pretty forest trail.

Glacier Lake

Laurier and Neil return to the trail from the lakeshore.

Evening cloud over the lake.

Division Mountain and the Southeast Lyell Glacier at sunset.

The wind-waves in the evening.

Waves roll in to the beach.

In the morning, the sun came up on a perfectly clear day with wonderfully, no wind. We hung around the lake for a leisurely breakfast, and then returned along the same route back out.

Glassy glacier Lake in the morning.

The Southeast Lyell Glacier in the morning.

The outflow of the lake at the south end of the campground.

Lovely cyan-blue water of the lake.

Leaving behind Glacier Lake on the trail.

Following the old trail up the hill.

Mount Sarbach across the Howse River.

Laurier and Neil look back from the hillside lookout.

White mountain avens on the hillside.

The bridge across the Saskatchewan River.

Looking down the river,

and back up the other side.

Photos taken by Rachel

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