Door Jamb Mountain and Loder Peak
Elevation: Door Jamb Mountain - 1996 m, Loder Peak - 2088 m
Elevation Gain: Door Jamb Mountain - 883 m, Loder Peak - 985 m
Both Doorjamb Mountain and Loder Peak are minor high points along a ridge that rises northward from the Bow Valley near Exshaw. Interestingly, although the former appears as a "mountain" and the latter appears as a "peak" on maps, the true high point of the ridge is significantly higher than either of these "summits" (Old Goat Mountain - 2393 m).
May 26 2012, May 21 2011
Door Jamb Mountain is a favorite early season scramble of mine. The scrambling is enjoyable and moderate and its location at the edge of the front ranges guarantees that the route will be snow-free much earlier than many other peaks. Moreover, the summit view is infinitely better than that offered from the summit of nearby and more popular Heart Mountain. Indeed, Door Jamb Mountain offers an excellent view of the front range peaks of the Bow Valley (without the eye sore that is the cement plant in nearby Exshaw). From Door Jamb, the ascent to Loder takes only a few minutes allowing for a quick and easy two’fer which can really help to boost your early season summit totals!
Joining me on this particular venture, the lovely Brianne, the lovely Mike and Andrea (Onge). Andrea had joined me for Door Jamb Mountain the year previous, however, she had abandoned her attempt at Loder due to a nearby thunder storm. We continued on without her and lived to tell of it so this year she was determined to complete one of the quickest two’fers in the Rockies. Of course, a late season snow fall the day prior might complicate matters…
Let the steep slab ascent begin! Looking back along the ascent ridge of Doorjamb Mountain from about mid-way up. This is where the scrambling really starts to get interesting! Much of the upper route involves steep-ish slab and it really is an early season treat compared to other shoulder season endeavors!
Onge on, what turned out to be the crux step, clinging desperately to the rock. Mike supervises creepily from below. In fairness to Onge, this brief step involved an awkward move for all of us.
The Breezy goat breezes across the steep slab.
Nearing the summit in a winter wonderland. A late season snow fall the day prior left it feeling less like spring and more like winter higher up. Fortunately, the snow didn’t really accumulate on any of the steeper terrain.
Looking over the prairies from the "summit" of Doorjamb Mountain.
The pleasant "summit" view of the Bow Valley including the Windtower, Rimwall Summit, the Three Sisters and the flank of Grotto Mountain.
The dusting of snow really makes the front range peaks look stunning! Here Grant MacEwan Peak, Heart Mountain and Mount McGillivray benefit from this treatment.
Mike enjoying the view of Yamnuska from the summit of Door Jamb with Loder next up along the ridge.
The Boss and I on the first of the day’s two summits.
I make this look good.
Loder Peak and the ridge's true high point to the north.
On to Loder Peak! Little did we know what was waiting for us on the summit of this nearby peak…
An anatomically correct snow woman!
Mike: “In the city she’d only be a 3/10 but up here, she’s at least a 6!”
Mike and I enjoying some additional female company.
Whoever said "anything more than a handful is a waste?"
Looking back down the snowy ridge to a sunny Door Jamb Mountain. Heart Mountain, Mount McGillivray and the four summits of Mount Lougheed form a scenic backdrop.
Looking west towards Grotto Mountain and Mount Fable.
Taking a load off on Loder Peak.
The ridge beyond Doorjamb Mountain and Loder Peak grows progressively more technical.
Calgary in the distance. Unfortunately, Loder Peak isn’t quite high enough to grant you a view of anything but the city's highest buildings.
Group shot atop Loder Peak before heading down. The rest of them forgot their awesome head bands.
Minor difficulties on descent…for some of us anyways.
More interesting early-season scrambling on descent. Is that Onge in the "five-point stance" again?