Last Updated: May 24, 2024


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Upcoming reports & photos:

Oh my! Quite the backlog here...

  • Pebble-to-North Creek Traverse incl. Pebble, Thiassi, Wesley & Sugus - hike/scramble (July 2023)
  • Mount Truax - hike/scramble (July 2023)
  • Blackcomb Buttress - rock climb (July 2023)
  • Whitecap Peak - hike/scramble (July 2023)
  • Mount Hanover - hike/scramble (August 2023)
  • The "Long Traverse" incl. Long, Tynemouth, Arrowhead, Tabletop & Anemone - hike/scramble (August 2023)
  • Armchair Traverse - hike/scramble (August 2023)
  • Snowspider Mountain - hike/scramble (September 2023)
  • Mount Trorey - hike/scramble (September 2023)
  • Macleod Peak - hike/scramble (September 2023)
  • Ben Lomond - hike/scramble (September 2023)
  • Mount Killam & Gambier Island - hike (September 2023)
  • Lone Goat & Snow Camp Mountain - hike (September 2023)
  • Isollilock Peak - hike/scramble (October 2023)
  • Manson - Hatfield Traverse - hike/scramble (October 2023)
  • Gargoyles & Columnar Peak - hike/scramble (October 2023)
  • Opal Cone and Lava Glacier - hike (October 2023)
  • Park Butte (WA) - hike (October 2023)
  • Trappers Peak (WA) - hike/scramble (October 2023)
  • Rattlesnake Ledge (WA) - hike (November 2023)
  • Sauk Mountain (WA) - hike (November 2023)
  • Mount Daniel & Pender Hill (Sunshine Coast) - hike (November 2023)
  • Mount Dickerman (WA) - hike (November 2022)
  • Winter's End (Verona Peak) - hike/snowshoe (November 2023)
  • Dolomites (Italy) - snowboarding (December 2023)
  • Red Rock Canyon (NV) - hike (January 2024)
  • Flute & Oboe - split tour (February 2024)
  • Whistler misc. (Train Wreck, Loggers Lake, Shadow Lake etc.) - hike (February 2024)
  • Mount Underhill - hike (March 2024)
  • Bombtram Mountain - hike/snowshoe (March 2024)
  • Steep Peak - split tour (March 2024)
  • Ruby Mountain (WA) - hike/snowshoe (April 2024)
  • Blustry Mountain - hike (April 2024)
  • Sowerby Peak (Barr East) - hike (April 2024)
  • Picacho Peak (AZ) - hike (April 2024)
  • Kitt Peak Observatory (AZ) - (April 2024)
  • Mount Wrightson (AZ) - hike (April 2024)
  • Saguaro Nat'l Park (AZ) - April 2024)
  • Superstition Peak/Benchmark (AZ) - hike (April 2024)
  • Mount Humphreys (AZ) - hike (May 2024)
  • Petrified Forest Nat'l Park (AZ) - (May 2024)
  • Piestewa Peak (AZ) - hike (May 2024)
  • Channeled Scablands (Columbia Gorge, Ancient Lakes, Potholes Lake, Palouse Falls etc.) - hike/bike (May 2024)
  • Rhododendron Mountain ("Pk. 2220") - hike (June 2024)
  • Flora Peak - hike (June 2024)

*As of 06/14/2024


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Friday, May 24, 2024

Mortar Peak - South Ridge via Hurley FSR, June 2023

The Scrambles in SWBC guidebook by Matt Gunn lists a hike out near Railroad Pass named Grouty Peak. The name is loosely applied to the entirety of a ~4-kilometer-long rocky crest located between the Hurley River FSR to the west and Hope Creek FSR to the east. Bordered by deep valleys on both sides, Grouty has a bit of an island-in-the-sky feel to it, and thusly commands great 360-degree views. A steep and somewhat bushy trail leads up from near Railroad Pass to the alpine with beautiful meadows, snowfields and finally some broken rock towards the top. The area also seems to be popular with the heli-ski companies as evidenced by the profusion of LZ markers littered about the upper portion of the ridge. There would be no heli or any other signs of man on this day however, just some quiet and solitude in a most beautiful corner of the South Coast Mountains!

To be precise, the actual named summit is applied to a point at the far north end of the crest. This point is neither the highest nor, so I have read, does it offer the best view. For that, one simply needs to hike about half of the way along the ridge to a pair of bumps known informally as Mortar Peak. Grouty and Mortar...get it? These three in addition to the first peak at the very south end constitute the four peaks of Grouty. Anyway, the northern bump is the taller of the two and would be my destination for the day while Agata hung back at the south peak. No hands-on action to get here, just an easy plod over a broad ridge ending with some scree and rock on a gentle summit. Of note are the views towards the mighty Mount Thiassi, Tenquille and Goat, peaks of the Railroad Group (Face and Locomotive) with Sampson behind and finally a swath of the Lillooet River Valley far off to the south. Way up there on the value/view-to-effort ratio! Pizza slices for lunch up top then back down the way we came, noting a large grizzly bear with cubs in the field there just before merging back onto the Pemberton Meadows Road. Neat to see from a safe distance! Popped into nearby Beer Farmers for some tasty refreshments to complete a satisfying day in the Pemberton backcountry!

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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Goat Ridge - via Britannia Creek, June 2023

There are a couple features named Goat Ridge 'round these parts that I am aware of. One is located on the North Shore near Grouse Mountain. The other one, featured in this report, lies just south of Squamish on what could be described as the continuation of the West Ridge of Sky Pilot Mountain. It is prominently visible while traveling southbound on HWY99 near Alice Lake, a long, gradual incline rising from behind Stawamus Chief. The "summit", as one might expect is the highest point on said ridge and boasts great views that include the peaks around Shannon Creek Valley (Habrich, Skypilot, Copilot), the lesser Marmot Creek Valley, Squamish Valley, and a stunner of a perspective on Howe Sound. It is this view that ultimately piqued my interest, that, and the fact that it is relatively close to home and accessible via a couple good trails. Speaking of trails, I decided to forego the more popular Petgill Lake Trail approach that starts near Murrin Prov. Park in favor of a bike n' hike from Britannia Beach. The benefits of doing this include less distance and vert, with ~5.3 km and ~1800 feet dispatched by bike. This leaves just ~4.6 km and ~3000 feet to reach the summit, not including all the little ups n' downs. The downside is that the portion of the FSR that parallels Britannia Creek is technically off limits due to mining-related activities, not that anyone seems to care about trespassing here.

Stashing my bike at the start of the "Disneyland" Trailhead (MTB downhill?), I hiked steeply up through forest to reach a junction with the Petgill Lake Trail continuation. Turned right here, now following the Goat Ridge Trail, around a small lake and up towards the rocky terrain above. As mentioned, there's a bit of micro terrain to contend with, including numerous small ups and downs before reaching the final slopes below the summit. Bit overcast on the day I was up there and somewhat moody with the clouds swirling about Sky Pilot and such. Pleasing views of all the peaks and valleys as mentioned previously, and especially of Howe Sound in all her glory. This is why I came here after all! Lingered for 30 min or so before heading back down the way I came. A bonus of a bike n' hike trip is obviously the ride down - quick and dirty, and oh so much fun! If only all hikes could end this way!

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Thursday, May 16, 2024

Stawamus Chief Mountain - Backside Trail, May 2023

Back up the iconic Stawamus Chief for a quick stretching of the legs with Pepper. Last up here in October 2020, tagging both the middle and main summits enroute. Changed things up a bit this time around by going for all three, in the order of Middle, Main, and South. The fixed cables and pegs up middle are a hoot as always to climb up (and down), especially with Pepper in-arm. Didn't realize until the saddle between Middle and South that there's also a peg ladder up the mostly vertical north side of South. How fun! Not something I can do with just one arm, so Pepper will have to stay at home the next time I come up this way. Anyway, up South the normal way for the trifecta to wrap up a fine and sunny Spring day!

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Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Mount Lincoln - Mount Lincoln Trail, May 2023

Located in the community of Yale about 24 kilometers north on Hwy 1 from Hope stands Mount Lincoln. It is a prominent bump in the middle of the Fraser Canyon where the river makes a large bend. There are outstanding views from a couple lookouts near the treed summit looking south down the canyon, particularly of Wells Peak, Hope Mountain, Silver Peak, and Isollilock Peak. A ~1.3 km long trail climbs some 1800 feet to its summit, making it a suitably short objective for those having just returned from a hike up nearby American Mountain for instance. At least that was the case for me, huffing up the steep hillside on a relatively hot afternoon in early May. The views, as promised did not disappoint, but don't bother searching for a viewpoint that looks north up the canyon as it simply doesn't exist. Do however beware the ticks, as I managed to acquire one on my "Huftgold" at some point on the hike back down. Didn't think too much of the mild stinging back there on my drive home, probably just a spot where the pack had rubbed me raw, I assumed. Au contraire mon frere, the little bloodsucker had indeed hitched a ride back with me! My first and hopefully the last time!

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Monday, May 13, 2024

American Mountain - via American FSR, May 2023

Second go at this one, following a previous attempt in November 2022. At the time, I duped myself into thinking this would be a good late season objective and that the "crux" waterfall section would be "in". Turns out there was just enough snow to be annoying, providing little in the way of relief from all the brush that is present on this route when free of snow. Nevertheless, Kevin and I made it to the infamous waterfall, and upon seeing that it was impassible, proceeded upwards to bypass it. Alas, I quickly tired of the steep unconsolidated powder snow and decided to call it, unbeknownst to me at the time that we were so very close to the top. Headed back to the truck and made our way over to the Hunter Lookout near Mission to salvage the day.

Fast forward to May 2023, and I pulled myself back together to give American another try, this time with more resolve and significantly improved snow conditions. Up to the waterfall once more, only to find it out of shape once again. Water was running with undercut snow, moats etc. Bit early in the season for this, but no matter and off for the bypass I go. Back into the gully directly above the waterfall section in short order and then onto the summit area with the abandoned tram station and the ubiquitous BC summit dildos. Just west of Hope, BC and flanking the north bank of the Faser River, the view from American is impressive. Cheam Range and company looking south, Fraser Valley towards Chilliwack to the southwest, Old Settler and others to the north with Outram and friends to the east - good stuff! Back down for a much shorter than anticipated hike, with enough time to tag nearby Mount Lincoln for another minor peak with great views to complete a satisfying day up the Fraser Canyon!

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