I love crossing streams at 6:00AM. Oh yeah. Freezing water gripping your nards like icy tongs really makes you feel alive! And don't let all of that screaming fool you. Ha-hah. Acting!
Alas I hang my head in shame. Cold water is my nemesis. Cold, rushing, waist deep water even more so. Combine that with an early start and I'm having a rough morning. This is Ross and Deanna crossing Cataract Brook (sans all the screaming).
After such a rude beginning the day did improve. We found a faint path to the Cataract Brook trail and immediately picked up the climber's trail leading up into the alpine. From there we wandered over scree and patches of summer snow towards the glacier.
There were great views of Huber and North Victoria and the other peaks surrounding Lake O'Hara.
But it was several hours before we got a look at the upper slopes of Cathedral.
And a couple more until we were post-holing along the snowy ridge below the summit.
But we got there in end, 9 hours and 1600 metres after leaving the cars.
Thankfully the return journey took only 4 hours including re-crossing the river.
This was a great day out in some impressive terrain. Researching the peak beforehand we were surprised by how little information there was, and the information we did find was confusing. So here's the scoop:
You need to cross Cataract Brook. This used to be easy because the Cataract Brook Trail to Lake O'Hara is on the west side of the river and there was a bridge. Today the trail is no longer maintained and the bridge is gone. Instead walk up the Lake O'Hara road for ~3.8km and access the river at an obvious open area at GR455960. There are km markers on the road so it's easy to estimate how far along the road you have walked. Once across you'll find a faint trail slightly up river. It's not obvious at first but quickly becomes a well beaten path leading away from the river. After 10 minutes the path will intersect the Cataract Brook Trail at a large boulder. Just behind the boulder is an obvious trail that follows a water course straight up. The trail emerges at a small scree field. Work your way up and left until below a cliff band. There is a fairly obvious trail. Follow this up through a sparse larch forest into the alpine and it's obvious from there.
Conditions Update Apr 11 2017
2 weeks ago