Eugene Y. on Mt Macfarlane
“Three of us embarked on a trip to the beautiful alpine lakes at Mt Macfarlane. The trail was in a fairly good condition, although some portions were really steep and required some care. Hiking poles are strongly advised, especially when passing above the first lake. It took us about 4.5 hours to reach Upper Pierce Lake. As some of us felt really tired, we decided not to proceed further and took a long break at the beach. Some of us went to explore the area at the ridge right above the lake in order to catch views of the surrounding mountains: Crossover Peaks, Slesse Mountain, Illusion Peaks, Mt Rexford, etc. There was very little snow in the area, just patches here and there, however, the trail toward the peak has some steep scrambling sections and can be quite slippery.
On the way down we briefly stopped at the first lake and some of us took a swim. It took us about 2 hours to get from Lower Pierce Lake back to the parking lot.
Overall, this was a fairly demanding hike for a day. It would be interesting to revisit the area on an overnight trip in order to appreciate the true beauty of the lake in early morning hours.”
Phil A. on Flora Peak:
“Confident that the weather would clear up, your heroes set off to conquer Flora Peak in Chilliwack Lake Provincial Park. The hike was a good mix of mossy second-growth forest, alpine meadows, talus slope-scrambling, and ridge exploring. We also timed it perfectly, and the clouds parted as we reached to summit. No real snow except for a few north-facing patches. Rather than take the trail down, we ‘shwacked through the flower fields and got a fantastic view of Chilliwack Lake.
Elevation Gain/Loss: 1520 m/-1520 m
Distance: 12.7 km”
Andy G. on Elk Mountain:
“Talk about a great day out – the views were expansive, the flower display was amazing (over 40 types of flower identified!), and the pie at Chilliwack airport a very welcome treat. Estafan, Julianna, and Michelle joined me (and we later bumped into Shawn near the first viewpoint) for a spectacular day of hiking on Elk. We even made it up to the viewless peak of Thurston, whose only saving grace was a patch of tiny glacier lilies!
A little bit of mud (no doubt from last Saturday’s rain), but the trail is otherwise in good condition and as steep as ever. No snow before the cairn on Elk, and only a couple of patches on the way to Thurston. There’s a new (to me) outhouse about 50 m up the trail. Best of all, I think the flower show will only get better over the next few weeks.”
Andrew W. at
Radium Flora Lindeman Lake:
“It was a last minute callout with some last minute changes due to snow.
First up: Radium Lake. One look at the snow level and that idea was quickly changed. Second up: Flora. We got 3/4 of the way there (after many a switchback) but then encountered deeper snow (2-3 ft or so) than expected so a return to base was the wisest course of action. Naturally, we were equipped to camp and camp we did. Lindeman Lake was relatively quiet and a refreshing night.
Pics on the Flickr pool as per usual.”
Bob H. on Elk-Thurston:
“Back to Chilliwack for another classic hike. Today was the first day of a ‘heat wave’, so I thought it would be good to get out before the temps were supposed to rise on the weekend. It’s also nice to do this hike on Friday and beat the masses. On the way up, our group of 3 only saw one other hiker – a fast pregnant woman! She kicked our butts up there. We would eventually meet more people on the traverse back. There are amazing views of the Fraser Valley, the Chilliwack River Valley, Slesse Creek Valley and many local mountains. Temps were mid 20s in the alpine environment, but dipped to a more refreshing temperature in the forest. As there are long stretches in the sun, we did get plenty of sun. The alpine flowers were in bloom and the colours (red, orange, blue, violet, white, yellow) were amazing. We returned to a hot car and the temperature was high 20s.”
Andy G. at Lindeman & Greendrop Lakes:
“Third time to Greendrop Lake, third time it rained on me 🙂 At least today it was only a sprinkle, with the main thunderstorm passing us by. Lindeman Lake looked stunning in bright sunshine, which meant it was baking hot out on the boulder fields. We were glad of the cloud cover on the return leg. Speaking of boulders, I was reminded again at how many boulder fields you cross on this hike – we came to the conclusion that beyond Lindeman Lake, the hike should be regarded as one giant boulder field with a few bits of forest in between!
The trail is in good condition and the water level is low so there are no issues at any of the creek crossings. As always, crossing Post Creek in the boulder fields requires good balance, and may be a bit tricky for less experienced hikers.
Lots of trillium blooming, a few fairyslipper orchids, hooker’s fairybells, wild ginger and streambank spring beauty. To my surprise, Queen’s cup leaves are already covering the forest floor in places, and it won’t be too long before they flower – I imagine that this time next month we’ll be seeing a lovely display. Devil’s Club is in leaf, the alder and cottonwood trees are at their aromatic peak. Varied thrushes aplenty, a red-headed sapsucker or two and I heard (but never saw) a couple of rufous hummingbirds. Lindeman Lake had a lone loon floating over on the far side.
This was the third of my ten-year anniversary hikes – it was the second hike I organized through Wanderung back in May 2005, and on that occasion it rained most of the way. (It rained quite a bit on my return in July 2012 too…) Thanks to Bob, Robert, and Nik for great company and an excellent day out.”
Stephen H. on Teapot Hill:
“The weather forecast had called for lots of rain, but we lucked out with sun and clouds. In short, it was a great day for a hike to the Seven Sisters and Teapot Hill at Cultus Lake. Teapot Hill lived up to its name, so Angela, Ivy, and Robert joined me in trying to spot as many of these ceramics in the nooks and crannies along the trail. Our approach via the Seven Sisters Trail allowed us to enjoy the lush rainforest in some solitude before joining the crowd on the hill.”
Boris on Cheam and Lady Peaks:
“Ida, Kevin, and I hiked the incredible Cheam (2112 m) and Lady (2178 m) Peaks in the Cheam range between Chilliwack and Hope. The weather was sunny and quite warm for late September, especially at this alpine altitude. The Cheam trail was moderately busy, with about a dozen others along the trail to Cheam, although Kevin and I were the only ones going up Lady and only Kevin made it the last ten minutes to the very top of Lady.
After climbing up a logging road in awful condition, the Jeep scraping bottom a few times (cars don’t have sufficient ground clearance to go up here), the actual trail to Cheam was in great condition. On the other hand, the trail up Lady was pretty much non-existent, with a few cairns giving guidance in some portions. Due to the need to scramble up rubble that constantly slides under one’s feet and causes frequent rockfalls, the best path is not consistent over time so additional markings would likely not be suitable in any case. We got a recommendation to go up along the ridge, though that resulted in bushwhacking which we could have avoided. The best route seems to be somewhat further from the ridge and closer to the snow banks. Scrambling and grabbing at heather is unavoidable. Reaching the part of the ridge that is on the order of a 100 m from the peak itself, the route becomes quite exposed as it’s nearly a vertical drop on the other side for most of the 2 km down to the valley floor.
The views from both peaks are absolutely stunning. Here’s a link to a public album on Facebook of the photos I took (excuse the poor cellphone camera quality).
Steve on Williams Ridge:
“I’ll try any trail in 103 Hikes once. Some more than once, but probably not this one. Although it wasn’t as painfully steep as the book suggests, the payoff was not worth the 1400m climb to the knoll and knee-knackering descent. However, the trip has other assets that made it a worthwhile day out. The forecast had called for rain but it did not. Wild blueberries were abundant. And the cloud did break enough for us to see what views were there, at first I thought all we’d see was grey nothingness. I was also lucky enough to hike with 4 people I’ve had the pleasure of hiking with before over the years (Do, Grace, Kevin, and Robert) and that gave us a chance to catch up and sharing the experience together is always a nice byproduct of these trips. I think MAYBE if you were doing the peak proper, and on a Summer day, and in damn good shape this trail would be worth doing using Matt Gunn’s Scrambles book, but why this particular hike had endured all 6 editions of 103 hikes (yes, back to 1973!), while others more worthy had come and gone, I cannot explain. The only GPS waypoint we needed was the trailhead, nothing beyond that presented a problem.”
Andy G. at Lindeman and Greendrop Lakes:
“Nine of us headed east to visit the turquoise waters of Lindeman and Greendrop Lakes. I’d forgotten how enjoyable this trail was and, although Greendrop Lake itself is a little anticlimactic, especially after passing Lindeman so early in the hike, I really liked the variety along the trail: some places it’s a nice footbed, others it’s boulders. The forest has numerous large trees, and the woodland flowers are beginning to bloom. The cracks of thunder as we crossed the boulder fields in the valley between the lakes added some atmosphere to the day. The trail is flooded just beyond Lindeman Lake, but getting by is straightforward over the large boulders. The creek crossings beyond the lake might be a little daunting for some right now with the high water. Further on, past the turnoff to Flora Lake, the creek takes multiple routes across the forest floor and the marked trail is impassable (unless you don’t mind wading). However, there is an obvious pink-flagged route off to the left that leads to a log crossing over a broken log. I’m not sure how much longer that will survive. Remarkably few mosquitoes – I only got half-a-dozen bites in total. Many thanks to Cara for organizing this hike.”