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The first day was spent hiking 9 km into Big Elbow Campground. Beautiful sites along the river, endless supply of cut firewood and clean outhouses made for a great place to pitch our tents. Arrived early afternoon with time to hike to Elbow Overlook, approximately 6 km, 300 m elevation gain and a fording of the Elbow River. The trail follows an old cut line to a ridge with superlative views of the Elbow River Valley and across to Three Point Mountain. On the second day we headed off to the junction with Banded Peak Trail. The bridge at 11 km is still out so another river crossing is involved. The trail appeared to continue on the north side so we decided to follow it but it ended abruptly at a side canyon after another 2 km or so. It was easier to turn back rather than bushwhack on the north side. We got back on track and it was an easy walk to the junction with the Banded Peak trail. It is a continuous climb from the start with steep sections across the scree but spectacular views of Banded and Outlaw Peaks. We made as far as the meadow below the col and decided to turn around. It was still a 20 km day with 1200 m elevation gain. Last morning was a relaxed start as we only had the 9 km back to the parking lot. Three fantastic days of clear, sunny weather, Elbow River crossings to cool our feet, and great company made for a wonderful backpack.
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