Trade skis for crampons and hike into an ice spire cathedral near the slopes of Alberta’s Lake Louise.
I strap nailhead-studded crampons called Icers over the soles of my winter boots and wonder just what I’ve gotten myself into. Others had raved about river-carved ice castles in Johnston Canyon, a notch in Banff National Park’s craggy peaks, so I’d signed up for a half-day hike as a midweek diversion for muscles weary from skiing Norquay, Sunshine and Lake Louise. Looking at the terrain ahead, though, I’m not sure how much of a break my weary muscles will get.
Without a doubt, finding a boot that fits and flexes properly is the most important part of the equipment equation. Even a flawed ski can be overcome if a child has the right boot. We polled coaches and instructors, and the message was clear: Go soft, and