Mt Howard
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Mt Howard Scramble - Elbow Falls Area

The basic route as seen from Mt Bryant

Parking opposite Canyon Creek drainage

On our way West up the Canyon Creek drainage, Mt Bryant center right

After an hour and 15 we arrive at the start of elevation gain

Looking back at the Canyon Creek drainage

An idea of the steepness once you get above tree line, alt descent route in view

Lee wondering about the wind he is facing!

Concerned looks due to wind

Rising ridge sections

A view of the alternative descent route

Another look back, cliffs of Mt Bryant on the left

Our first look at pointy Mt Howard still far away to the south

Some interesting clouds

Getting closer one ridge section at a time!

Close up view, see the small pinnacle to the right of the summit slope

Last ridge section before summit slope

Summit slope, pretty steep

Adeem is happy to have made it in the wind all the way

Satisfied in spite of the wind

Lee and Adeem

Views to the south and west

Views to the East

View to the North

On our way back

Traverse over to the alt descent rib

Descending on left side of rib

More descent terrain views

Enjoying the descent as the wind had died down by this time

A look back at the descent route

Steep slope to tree line

Look back at alternative descent route from the creek bed

Poles come in handy after 7 hours of wind!

Mt Howard Scramble

Scramble: Class 2

Altitude: 2,777 m (9,108 ft)

Ascent Time: 4- 5 hours, approx 10km one way

Elevation Gain: approx. 1,040 m (3,411 ft)

Best Season to Scramble: July to September, beware of wind conditions as this can prevent success


Once you exit the tree line and ascend the very steep part to the ridge top you begin a very nice ridge walk with great views all around sans the wind of course

Getting There

Head out to Bragg Creek and onto highway 66 to Elbow Falls. At the end of the road you can go left into Elbow Falls campground or continue straight leaving the pavement and onto a narrow gravel road called Powder Face trail. Take the gravel road for approx 14.5 km until you reach the wide Canyon Creek drainage. There is a small pull off here on the right side of the road.

Route Description for Dry Conditions

Head west on the Canyon Creek drainage for approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes, the trail up the ridge to your left is obvious from quite a distance away. See photos. Mt Howard’s summit is not visible at this point.

Head up the trail, it becomes a bit faint midway up but just pick your line of least resistance through the trees until you arrive at tree line. The slope above tree line is very steep and foreshortened. Zig zag your way up looking for the best footing. Once on the ridge top the way becomes obvious as you take short rising ridge sections one at a time. After about the second ridge section the pointy top of Mt Howard appears way in the distance to the south. Generally follow the ridge top as side hill traversing isn’t all that pleasant. If the way on your day is dry there is a faint side trail up to the last ridge section that most people take. Pick your way up to the last ridge section which has the pinnacle on it just before the summit slope. From here tackle the summit slope head on with a bit of hands on scrambling through rocky sections. Now if you are attempting Howard with a lot of snow or icy snow on it that becomes a matter of your own judgment and experience as to the best route to take and the use of crampons and ice axe for certain sections. My description here is only for dry conditions.