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Grotto Mountain - Carter Buttress Viewpoint

To embark on the Grotto traverse, hikers and trail runners typically begin with the Carter route on Grotto Mountain. Unlike what one might anticipate—loose scree and an indistinct trail—the Carter route surprises with its resemblance to Lady MacDonald, featuring clearly defined switchbacks and a gentle incline in the initial portion. Upon reaching the viewpoint, you'll regret not having chosen this route sooner! Carter Buttress is truly one of the hidden gems of the Bow Valley. 

 Climb: Carter Buttress Viewpoint

Length: approximately 2.4 km
Elevation Gain: around 740 m

Getting to the start: Park at the the Rat's Nest Cave Trailhead between Canmore and Exshaw. From there, take the trail on the West side of the parking lot. Follow the trail across the creek then up the bench on the climber's left side of the trail.

The start of the trail seen from the parking lot

Stay on the bench right next to the creek until you hit the power lines.

Download the GPX File here

Getting back down: Hike back down the same way you came up.