Peyto Hut to Guy Hut

Banff National Park

Yoho National Park

A long, wild and adventurous journey to a spectacularly positioned hut

Also in British Columbia, Canada

Ski Touring Difficult

Distance
12 km
Ascent
688 m
Descent
612 m
Duration
4-5 hrs
Low Point
2.5 km
High Point
2.9 km
Gradient
25˚
Peyto Hut to Guy Hut Map

If the sun is shining, this is a wonderful and long journey across the heart of the Wapta Icefield. In bad weather, it's a tough slog which requires careful navigation and great care.

Description

The trip south up the Peyto Glacier to the huge glacial expanse of the Wapta Icefield is straightforward enough and doesn't present too much crevasse danger, but it still deserves respect and is further than it initially appears.

Once in the middle of the Icefield you'll be right beneath the spectacular St. Nicholas Peak, and will have excellent views of Mounts Gordon, Olive and Collie, as well as a host of other mountains on the eastern side of the Icefields Parkway.

Head west-southwest across the Icefield, descending briefly and then crossing a large flat expanse which leads towards Mount Collie. Climb the skinner's right side of the glacier beneath Collie, taking great care with your line choice so as to minimise crevasse danger. If you have poor visibility, it might be worth bailing on this section and instead retreating to the Bow Hut - the glacier is heavily crevassed and picking a route without being able to see is both difficult and potentially dangerous.

Assuming you are able to see and to safely negotiate the climb up the glacier you'll find yourself on another huge plateau, this time right beneath Mount Collie. Turn south and ski/skin on the left hand side of a ridge which leads directly towards Yoho Peak. There are some cliffs to the right of the ridge, so always err towards the left as you head along it. The terrain underfoot is easy enough so - assuming the sun is out - you can enjoy the views without too much stress.

As the ridge begins to descend more steeply the Guy Hut will appear below you, with Yoho Peak visible behind it. Rip skins (if you haven't already) and make some fun turns down to the hut.

The hut enjoys a spectacular view across Mount des Poilus to the west, Mount Gordon to the east, and south towards the Presidents peaks. It sleeps around 20 people and has mattresses and stoves but you'll need to bring your own sleeping bag. As with all huts in the area, it needs to be booked in advance through the Alpine Club of Canada.

Difficulty

Difficult

Serious gradient of 30-38 degrees where a real risk of slipping exists.

Medium Exposure (E2)

2 out of 4

As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

February, March, April

Features

  • Alpine
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Ice axe
  • Glacier kit

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area