A short and very popular route in the spray valley which takes you down Sweet 16 – earning its name from the roughly 1600 foot descent. This route is not to be taken lightly. Multiple large slide paths are crossed, along with a steep and exposed slope.
Notables: kananaskis, alpine, moderate, loop
Parking: Saw Mill Parking, or 550m south of it.
Approach: If you parked at the Saw Mill Parking Area, head south for about 550m until an old cut line/logging road appears on the right. Follow the old logging road road until the trees open up in the valley. Be aware of a couple of large slide paths along the way. From here you’ll notice a slight tree triangle at the back and a bench lookers right above that. Make your way up through the tree triangle. At the top of the trees, head north and cross the steep, open slope to gain the bench. Once in the bowl, continue north and eventually gain the ridge that brings you to Hero’s Knob. Sweet 16 is the obvious col on the west side of Hero’s Knob. Slides from the steep West faces occur frequently and run onto the typical ski route.
Descent/Exit: There are a few possible lines off of Hero’s Knob. Most often skied is Sweet-Sixteen. If this isn’t enticing enough, you can scramble up and along Hero’s Knob. There is a fair bit of exposure on this route. The first line you’ll come upon is a short dog-leg couloir that empties into sweet-sixteen. If you continue a bit further along the ridge of Hero’s knob, you’ll find another chute that empties a bit further down into the Murray drainage. Whichever route is taken off of Hero’s Knob, follow the Murray drainage to exit. The route will often cross the creek a couple of times. Eventually, it’ll flatten and you’ll be presented with a bit of a headwall – skin or hike up this, then continue heading east. Once out of the trees, cross the creek and continue to the road.