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Bertha Peak Route is a 9.7 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Improvement District No. 4, Alberta, Canada that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, camping, and nature trips.

Length 9.7 mi Elevation gain 4,087 ft Route type Out & Back
Camping Hiking Nature trips Walking Forest Lake River Views Wildlife
Description
Waypoints (0)

Follow the lakeshore trail past the Bertha Lake campsites, maybe about 1/4 mile. As the lake comes into view again you will notice a trail that heads left to the lake- at this point look right and you will see rock cairns. Start scrambling up to the right following the cairns. The trail is steep and the cairns not easy to spot (many had fallen down) but eventually it leads you to a flat area with a large rock cairn with a stick poking up in the middle. From here it took us 1.25 hours to the peak and back to this spot. The next cairn leads to a trail through a forested section. The trail is easy to see here- it goes down into a small valley and takes you up to the ridge which leads to the peak. Then it’s a simple scramble up on shale and large slab shale covered with black and green lichen. The peak has a huge rock cairn and amazing 360 views of Waterton.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (46)
Photos (729)
Recordings (30)
Completed (272)
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Sharon Wang
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Hiking
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Violet Lim
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 14, 2020
HikingRockyScramble

Hiking trail: Bertha Lake and Bertha Peak (The Apocalypse Version) Hiking date: September 13, 2020 Distance: 16.2km Total elevation gain: 985m (did not summit) Time: 6.25 hrs (solo hike & includes much humming and hawing) I’ve mentioned this before in a previous review - that I learn more from my mistakes and failures than I do my successes. Although I failed to summit this peak by virtue of fatigue (this hike would be the 3rd hike in 3 days), I now realize the limits of my body and my endurance level - and it’s far from where I want it to be. However, knowing when to quit is important, and while I could have pushed all the way to the summit, I understood two things: 1) That I couldn’t trust my legs to carry me down the steep mountain in a safe manner; and 2) That I was not seeing lines or routes clearly going up or down, and so my mental fortitude was not at the level I needed it to be at. Smoke from the US wildfires has darkened the Waterton skies and smothered the sun to a reddish hue, setting a somewhat apocalyptic tone for this hike. The walk to Bertha Lake is not rigorous, covering at least three waterfalls - each successive one grander than the one before - as well as multiple switchbacks designed to make this 600m elevation gain of a trek easy on the feet of casual hikers. I arrived at Bertha Lake, which is nestled between Mount Alderson, Mount Richard Bennett, and of course Bertha Peak. Not much can be seen past a kilometre or so with the smoke smothering what I presume to be beautiful and jaw-dropping views. As I began the climb up Bertha Peak, I realized the fatigue in my legs wasn’t going away with every upwards step, like it usually does. I climbed up 300m, knowing I had only about 200m to go before reaching the summit. But the more I scrambled up on rock and scree, the less confident I was that I would be able to descend with surefootedness and clarity of mind. I cursed the incredibly delicious blueberry ice cream I had the day before as this craving completely consumed my thoughts on the climb. This was my brain’s way of telling me to stop, take a much-needed rest, and turn around. So I did stop and enjoy whatever I could see from my vantage point. The way back down the scree and rocks was excruciatingly slow as my feet were exhausted and in pain. I eventually made it down to the lake but not before witnessing a Slow and Steady hiking group go up the mountain (one of the photos shows them in a line). If I’m down in Waterton again, this summit will be the first hike to do. PS: Yes, I did have a double-scoop of blueberry cheesecake ice cream after, thanks to @waynerussell7777 and @lorelei_waters_ who inherently understood that was exactly what this girl needed. Instagram for pics/DM: rootyhiker

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Derek Falkowsky
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 6, 2020
HikingGreat!Scramble

I enjoyed this hike. there is a lot of diversity in the hike and some scrambling once you reach the base of the mountain and start heading up. first bit of the hike is easy, well defined trail all the way to Bertha Lake. After, I had to bush wack to get to the base of the mountain where I wanted to start (left of the waterfall in Alan Kanes guidebook). some route finding to begin with but once you gain some elevation there are cairns and easy to see trail and the rest of the hike is pretty gravy except for the last push up to the summit. I thought the views where pretty cool all the way around. Waterton lakes, Bertha Lakes, Glacier National Park in the USA, and the cool oxidized rock formation. I came down the same way I came up and it was so easy! 5.5 hours to complete this hike/scramble including lunch on the summit. (I was going really fast though) so plan for about 7 hours on average.

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Shania Villamor
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 1, 2020
HikingOff trailOver grownRockyScramble

Mediocre views for the effort spent hiking to the summit. Lots of way finding past the lake because the trail is very hard to find, but you will occasionally see cairns which are very helpful! Scree skiied down and ended up bushwhacking through the burnt trees and weeds! Overall okay hike. Make a stop at the lake for a refreshing swim :)

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Kelly Roy
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HikingGreat!Off trailScramble

Overall the hike was great. Started off a bit rainy and cloudy but the sun came out as we were attempting to make it to the peak but let’s not kid anyone the trail is non-existent. It’s just each hiker finding what they think is a way to the top. Very lose shale and steep side of the mountain hike/scramble when it comes to the actual peak, not marked on the trial head. We got lost and due to time turned back never made it to summit. Recommend that those attempting take a serious consideration into how risky you wan to be.

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Tiara Milo
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Hiking
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Brian Persaud
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HikingNo shadeOff trailRockyScramble

First off, thank you to everyone for the Carins! Definitely helped throughout the trail. Only made it to the false summit due to time contraints. Like many others, I took scree route down and had to bushwhack a little back to the trail at the end. The lake view was amazing! Bring lots of water. Enjoy!

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Christiane Légal
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 19, 2020
HikingGreat!RockyScramble

We hiked to the peak in August, it took us around 8 hours to do the full circuit. The beginning is very steep and lots of scree. Follow the Inukshuks for a path. Once you pass this "fake peak", it becomes a little less steep & loose. It opens up into a little forest valley, then the final climb up to the peak. The wind was very intense. Amazing views!

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Vanessa Russell
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HikingNo shadeOff trailRocky

Did this hike yesterday with two friends. Later start which made it very very hot - make sure to bring at least 2L of water and some electrolytes as it’s very exposed! We only made it to the second viewpoint (right before the traverse to the peak) because of our later start but it was still beautiful! We followed the path around the right side of the lake and started up the incline where a rock cairn marked the path. Easy to follow the rock cairns as there were many - we rebuilt a few but we found the route no problem. Very dusty and slippery so be careful! Took the scree slope on the way down which was much faster but we ended up having to bushwhack to find the lake trail again at the bottom. Overall, really beautiful and will definitely come back to finish the peak :)

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Sabrina Stushnoff
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Hiking

I would caution anyone who is thinking of doing this hike to seriously evaluate your fitness level and climbing experience. I say this not to dissuade people from attempting it, but to make sure that people are adequately prepared as my boyfriend and I simply were not. Allow me to explain. It is almost entirely a vertical climb on rock and loose shale. It is steep, tiring, completely open to the sun, and one false step could easily land you severely injured or worse. The route is marked only by small inukshuks scattered up the mountain and they are easily missed (especially going down). The view at the top is absolutely stunning, and even going up we could not help to look back and marvel at the lakes beauty (while we caught our breath). However, the cost was not worth it for us. We made it, but we very nearly did not. If you are going to attempt it, please over-prepare. We do not want to see other hikers potentially getting hurt.

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Mel Stelfox
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Hiking

The trail not well marked up to the peak!

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milos djukic
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 1, 2020
Hiking

so far the best trail only on account of the fact I finished the loop and decided to venture off route to the Bertha peak

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Ben Berg
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 28, 2020
HikingGreat!Off trailRockyScramble

Nice wide trail up to Bertha Lake but much steeper with often very feint trail above the lake to the summit, especially difficult to follow on the way down to the lake.

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