A man does not climb a mountain without bringing some of it away with him and leaving something of himself upon it. Sir Martin Conway
Calf Robe Mountain is part of the Continental Divide and is located on the Firebrand Pass trail which starts at the Lubec Lake Trailhead. Elevation at the peak is 7,920 ft and ranks 173 of 234 named peaks in the park. This is not a challenging hike/climb even though round trip mileage is around 10 miles and elevation gain is 2,800 ft. Most of the distance is covered on-trail versus off-trail.
Three of us set out on this early Autumn day hoping to find mostly sunny skies and temperatures in the 60’s. We had mild conditions until we got above tree line at which point we had moderate winds, cloudy skies, and cooler but tolerable temperatures. Regardless of weather it was a beautiful hike taking in all the early changes of colors and the crisp smell of Fall.
Once we left the trail it was very simple to navigate our way up to the peak. There were some game trails and sporadic climber’s trails to follow, although you don’t necessarily even need them. We just headed for the tallest point on the flat mountain (the east side) knowing that was the summit. There was only one small set of cliffs to navigate before reaching the summit.
We encountered a large group of sheep at the base of the cliff. The young ones were nursing or playing and the adults were foraging. They didn’t seem to be bothered by our presence in the least. We skirted around them and made our way through the cliff band. We decided to take a more challenging route for fun.
On the summit the winds were much stronger and colder. We sat just below the summit, out of the wind to eat our lunch and take in the views. Being on the southern boundary of the park, the views north were spectacular! Visible peaks include Grizzly, Rockwell, Flinsch, Red Crow, Rising Wolf, Bearhead, Battlement, Helen, and Caper.
On the way out we met two young men from the Midwest who were finishing their last four days on the CDT trail. They were haggard, dirty, and thirsty but in good spirits. We gave them some water and congratulated them. The whole trip took us about five hours. I think this area would also make for some fantastic back country skiing.
Please enjoy the video of this adventure here:
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