Chris N. in the Southern Chilcotins:
“Matt, Doug and I spent 4 days camped in Graveyard Valley in the Southern Chilcotins and exploring the surrounding ridges. Access was via the Hurley (thoroughly unpleasant but 2wd-able), the Tyaughton Lake road (washboard-y corners but 2wd), Taylor-Mud Connector (slick when wet descending to the Tyaughton Creek crossing but 2wd otherwise), Mud Creek FSR (excellent; very 2wd), Mud-Paradise FSR (one berm 2/3 of the way down the hill to Tyaughton Creek might be 2wd; pothole-y after hill but reportable 2wd beyond the Tyaughton Creek trailheads) and the Relay Creek FSR (totally not 2wd right from the start). The last road requires high clearance 4wd and lots of nerves. There’s channeling, creek crossings, deep rutting, mudpits, off-camber sections with exposure and one steep off-camber hill with bad traction. We spent 1/2 hour doing some road work (bring shovels!) and made it to the road end. But this road isn’t going to last many more years. Once on the trail, they are generally easy to follow but wet at this time of year. We spent most of our time off-trail up in the alpine though and encountered very little snow – even above 2500 m. Deer, wolf, bear and moose tracks abound. Saw a sow grizzly with 3 yearly cubs and a wolf. And met no-one else. An excellent trip to my favourite part of the province.”
Phil on Slollicum Peak:
“In search of a snowy summit on a scorching day, four intrepid Wanderung-ers headed to Slollicum Peak. After muscling our 4×4 up to the trailhead, it was a 4-hour hike on a moderately well marked trail. We were greeted with blooming flowers, the odd stinging nettle, and babbling brooks. The summit was snow covered, and offered a great 360 degree view of the hanging Slollicum Lake, Mt Baker, Harrison Lake, and the countless surrounding peaks.
Distance: 13 km
Elevation Gain: 1440 m
More hike information on Club Tread”
Chris M. on Brandywine Mountain:
“The combination of easy access and nice alpine makes Brandywine a good last-minute weekend destination. My Xterra made it to the 4wd parking area with no problems. The trail through the meadows has been upgraded and now there is very little mud. We left the valley before the end went south up to the ridge where we scouted out camping locations. From our vantage it was fun to watch different groups take various routes up the mountain. They all looked like coloured ants. In the evening we made a good firepit and soaked in the superb star show.
We didn’t rush in the morning but we were still easily the first people up to the summit on Sunday. We didn’t have to cross any snow and the views were fabulous. When we returned to camp we took a siesta before packing up and taking a slightly different route back down. Our travel time between parking and camping was around 2 hours, both ways,
Paul, Amy & Liam all had a similar desire for a relaxing but satisfying alpine trip, which made for a perfect group experience. The warm sunny weather was fantastic; especially for October.”
Steve v. at Seed Peak:
“After a failed attempt last year, I learned from my mistakes and Andy, Pete, Janice, and Danielle joined me for a successful peak bag on a balmy October day.
With more confidence in our GPS tracks and an early start, we were able to guide our driver, Danielle, to the trailhead without issue. She made quick work of the obstacles and a high clearance 4×4 was required.
The trail itself has 4 distinct phases: a clearcut and wooded trailhead, a rolling ridge-like ascent, a barren rocky section with tarns, scree and glacier, and the peak view area (also a ridge). The thing about this trail is that all parts are extremely scenic (especially in fall). In fact, I would consider none of this trail to be the usual “chore” section that exists in most BC hikes.
Wayfinding was needed, but not much, and the drive is very long so do your homework, but I’d rank this as one of the top 10 in the 103 Hikes book (though know the stats under-represent the elevation gain and distance).”
Steve v. at Tricouni Peak:
“Did we make the peak? Almost. Did we see amazing scenery and views all around? You bet we did! This trip was one of those epic dayhikes that may have better been served as an overnight trip. The need for a good 4×4 makes this particular destination hard to reach for the average hiker but do what you can to someday come to Tricouni Meadows and Peak.
Lakes, waterfall, flowering meadows and open summits all awaited us, impressing us at every muddy step. Yes, that is right, the legendary muddiness of this trail was out in full force but really is only an issue for the first 1/4 from the trailhead. Another group of hikers told us there is a way less muddy trail on the other side of the creek and had the clean pants to show for it (someone look into this!).
The group (me, Tamara, Paul, Perry) held up a decent pace but we still found that the mud, combined with the extensive scree fields and snow patches put us way over the 7 hour time estimate listed in 103 Hikes. More like 9 hours with lunch but I can’t help but think maybe it is easier with more snow in certain parts than less.
After an exhausting hike out with an endless “last kilometre” we tried to get into the Watershed for some grub but it was packed and ended up at the Howe Sound Brew pub.
One last big thanks to Perry for getting us to the trailhead and for having a spare pair of boots to lend!”
Tu Loan at Twin Lakes:
“Steps to an awesome backcountry trip through Wanderung:
- Place a callout to the most amazing place within a 4 hour drive: Twin Lakes (Haylmore-Melvin Divide in 103 Hikes Book).
- Be lucky enough to gather a group of great people who all pitch in to do their part to make the trip great: Elisa, meal sharer extraordinaire; Ty, beverage sharer extraordinaire; and Nima, human mule extraordinaire. TLT was photographer and meal sharer #1.
- Have a car that can drive 13 km on rough FSR and make rock clearing a sport amongst your passengers.
- Provide a doable and scenic 10 km hike through a U-shaped valley with plenty of flowers and creeks to distract from the bugs.
- Arrive at the first lake with plenty of time to take in the beauty of being in the alpine and the magnificent views mountains to the south and waterfalls to the north.
- Prepare a delicious meal for 4 with the non-chefs fighting off the now-not-so-cute-but-aggressive marmots (one ran off with Nima’s headlamp on our last day!). Beverages were well paired for the meal: white wine, après dinner port, and Bailey’s for yet hot chocolate.
- Be prepared for the unexpected cold evening! Ty’s bivy sack was frosted, inside and out, the next morning. Luckily, we had a structural engineer to explain the phenomenon.
- Spend the whole day exploring the area above the first lake, with a magical trek through a meadow of wildflowers!! Nearby peaks are scramble-able. Make sure you have Matt Gunn’s book to help with route finding.
- Enjoy a second evening of a delicious meal and wine pairing and great company.
- Pack up the last day and retrace trek back to car and head over to Birkenhead Provincial Park to find solace from heat and jump into the refreshing lake. This was also bought us time until HWY 99 southbound opens up again (Iron Man Canada).
- Enjoy after hike refreshments and meal in Pemberton!
Thank you Elisa, Nima, and Ty for making my first overnighter callout so memorable with great stories, great food, and great company! Pictures as proof!”
Chris M. on Tricouni Peak
“Six of us went up to Tricouni Peak. The final part of the road was rough on our two 4wds. Trail was certainly muddy to start but we were soon on snow from before the first lake. All us of then went fairly straight up the somewhat steep snow slopes. Erica, Ian & his dog waited near the sub-summit while the four of us – Glenn, Brad, Scott and myself – went up on the top. Bluebird day. The much-sliding down might have been the highlight!”
Steve on Hope Mountain:
“Thanks to a great response from 4×4 drivers, 8 of us tackled the trail known mostly for views of the town of Hope (from straight above). Rob and Rob managed the road and got us there safely. The trail was very “Indiana Jones” (overgrown) for much of the way and there were 2 very minor scrambles, and only patches of snow were left. The bushwhacking aspect of this really slowed us down and hike time exceed even my padded estimates. It took us close to 7 hours on trail (some books estimate 5, Club Tread says 6). It was a long day ending at the Wildcat Grill near Harrison, but the weather was great, and surrounding views impressive (though hazy). Word to the wise – never sit ON the cairns at the peak or anywhere else, you never know what the engineering skills are of the person that built it…”
Irina on Mt Mulligan and Anif Peak:
“Following changes to the destination and the participants list, Brad, Melissa and Evgeny joined me for this hike. Brad’s Pathfinder taking us further than expected along the Mamquam FSR shortened the anticipated hike along the logging road by ~4 km each way. After hiking up clear cuts and rarely spaced trees, we found ourselves on the tree-studded Mount Mulligan. Dropped down to the saddle and continued up Anif Peak. The ascent was certainly steeper than I expected, but the snow was perfect for kick-stepping up, and while I was happy to be wearing my crampons, the others managed well without them. A walk along the narrow ridge, and we’re on the summit of Anif Peak. Now that felt like a worthwhile destination, with a close view of the Sky Pilot group and Mount Habrich under blue skies! We settled in on the snow-free south end of the peak and basked under the summer sun for 1.5 hours, enjoying the view and relaxing. It was a breeze getting down to the vehicle through the gully between Mulligan and Anif, leaving us with plenty of time for an enjoyable conversation and an early dinner at the Brew Pub. See full trip report with geotagged pictures on Live Trails.”
Michelle at Statlu Lake:
“Too much, the Magic Bus! Awash in a sea of emails, I would have needed to own the Magic Bus to accommodate the overwhelming response to this callout.
This Trek to the Undiscovered Country still took almost 3 hrs going as fast as possible in a well equipped 4×4. This officially 4×4 status road is *possible* for a car to take on (save for the last two short branch roads) at a much slower pace, but you’ll be muttering ‘Come on, come on’ and if you try and get anywhere at any speed your passengers will be shrieking ‘she’ll fly apart!’ as you exclaim ‘(We’ll) fly her apart then!!!!’.
If you disregard the significant driving effort, the hiking effort is minimal for the fine reward of Statlu Lake. Truly an area unlike what we would expect around here. Numerous high falls set in impressive box canyons (easy to see how there have been fatalities peering over edges). Seemed more like Pemberton – aquamarine lake in a rugged blueberry-rimmed bowl and old growth surrounded by gorgeous snow capped peaks. Though perhaps this should not be so surprising as you can drive these roads all the way through to Pemberton, if your 4×4 dares.
Due to time we opted to explore Statlu and the beautiful camp at its far end instead of ascending to the upper lake/viewpoint. Beautiful place to camp and explore. No wonder climbers scramble around this area. Thanks to the gentleman who built the new connector trail and bridges.
Note that the Harrison West FSR is posted as closing @ 25 km for bridge construction for 1 week sometime TBD between Aug 15 and Sept 15 – check the FSR road advisories for updates.”