Forums Trip Reports The bc of B.C. tour (warning many pics)
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  • #567665
    nomad
    288 Posts

    I may expand on this basic TR later, but for now here’s what I have. I’m lazy.

    Our week started out north of Pemberton with a couloir on Joffre calling our name – the obvious one.

    Dropped our overnight gear at the hut and got moving.

    Up the anniversary glacier to the small icefield

    Vantage peak. This was hit the next day in mixed weather.

    Couloirs. The right one doesn’t go through cleanly.

    Booting up the aussie couloir. Some others had been up there before us, but made excessive turns on the way down. Oh well – the snow was too baked when we got there anyways. The couloir would be super fun to flow down with speed in good powder conditions.

    Matier in the background

    on top

    gorgeous, endless terrain

    Rapping into the couloir. By far the gnarliest couloir I have ever been down. 2 rappels, the second of which our rope wasn’t quite long enough for, 60 plus degrees, 2000-2500 ft total fall-line, bergschrund at the bottom, mostly by headlamp. I was gripped.

    sunset in the couloir

    Weather was moving in, so we drove down to Vancouver, gorged on sushi, visited my buddy at his place downtown, and headed out to Rogers Pass.

    Heading up towards Illecillewaet.

    The Asulkan hut = $$$. It has a thermostat.

    The view from the hut is terrible.

    Heading up on the same day to Youngs Peak.

    Booted up the obvious couloir, should have come around from the top.

    It was deep, then turned to unsupportable facets.

    Nice pic Kyle!

    No pictures of riding down. The clouds moved in before we could strap in, making it a low-vis experience.

    Some people go to the huts in style – toasted brie and wine. One dude even brough a full-sized electric guitar. Our ghetto food was not up to snuff.

    Next day, the Asulkan hut was full, so we had to lug our heavy packs through deep snow up to the Sapphire Col. Some beautiful lines were spied on the way, and we thought it might be feasible to come around from the top and make it a big one.

    View of Sir Donald

    Saw this rock ride on the way. Where’s Jonaven when you need him? Unfortunately, it may be rather crevassed below.

    The lovely tin can on Sapphire Col. It’s actually not too bad for warmth once you cook dinner, plus it’s lined with insulating wood.

    We booted up to Pollox (Jupiter), and had some amazing views of the Dawson Range. An attempt to traverse the ridge to our line was thwarted by holes between the cornices and the rock. We discovered these menaces when Kyle suddenly sunk up to his chest, revealing a 15-20 ft deep crack. I was amazed that the cornice still hung there even though it was so well separated from its anchor. Stepping closer to the other side of the ridge put us on a severely exposed, rime-encrusted face that was not easily protectable. We ditched the traverse and turned around.

    Two Norwegians followed our bootpack up to Pollox. We later found out that one of them had made an attempt on K2. They were just cruising around Canada all nonchalant bagging classic Canadian climbs. Badass.

    I made a run down to the glacier.

    Then booted up Mt. Swanzy. Unfortunately, clouds and low light stopped me again, and I was forced to ride down my ascent line from 2/3rds of the way up the ridge. The other lines would have to wait.

    The hut was small and cozy. You get the picture.

    Unfortunately, the next day dawned as a near-whiteout. A few turns were made down to the glacier below Swanzy, after which we loaded up our heavy packs. The ski down to the Asulkan valley was slow so as to avoid crevasses,

    Cruising with my behemoth of a double pack.

    Poles help with lots of weight.

    We had plenty of time to get down to the Wheeler hut, so we stopped along the way to check out the possibilities. I was seriously considering this drop, but ultimately decided to skip it. The distance to clear the rocks was actually quite sizeable when viewed from the side. In hindsight, I should have built a lip and runway, which would have made it feasible.

    Kyle dropped this pillow line as the snow became wetter.

    Next day with weather and sketchy avalanche conditions arriving, we decided to head back down to Montana (Saturday). I really wanted to make it down to splitfest, but it was just too far of a drive. Next year!

    While we didn’t get very far, more importantly my eyes were opened to the sheer quantity of amazing possibilities up in Canada. We only scraped the surface, leaving me yearning for more of that vast, wild, snow-covered land. I will be back to explore the deep valleys, huge icefields and endless terrain. It is just so damn sick!

    #587651
    jimw
    1421 Posts

    @nomad wrote:

    Rapping into the couloir. By far the gnarliest couloir I have ever been down. 2 rappels, the second of which our rope wasn’t quite long enough for, 60 plus degrees, 2000-2500 ft total fall-line, bergschrund at the bottom, mostly by headlamp. I was gripped.

    :shock::shock::shock:
    @nomad wrote:

    We had plenty of time to get down to the Wheeler hut, so we stopped along the way to check out the possibilities. I was seriously considering this drop, but ultimately decided to skip it. The distance to clear the rocks was actually quite sizeable when viewed from the side. In hindsight, I should have built a lip and runway, which would have made it feasible.

    :shock::shock::shock:

    I don’t think the Norwegians are the badassess here…

    And a double pack on top of it all! Nice.

    #587652
    nomad
    288 Posts
    #587653
    Arash
    27 Posts

    Very nice TR nomad. BC looks sick right now.

    #587654
    jack
    323 Posts

    @nomad wrote:

    We have a long way to go…

    http://staff.washington.edu/skykilo/Formidable/NWFace.html

    where do i sign up? 😈

    #587655
    TEX
    2486 Posts

    So whats heavier your double pack or your Ball sack? Im scared just sitting here

    #587656
    bcrider
    4150 Posts

    Your adventures and TRs are always incredible guys!

    WOW!

    Thanks for sharing. 8)

    #587657

    Very nice for sure. Thanks for sharing the journey! Must get to Canada…..NOW! 😀

    #587658
    lifelinksplit
    282 Posts

    hell yeah! I figured you two would be hitting up some gnarly lines while on spring break.

    Some people go to the huts in style – toasted brie and wine

    What with the size of that pack you didn’t have any bottles of wine? 😛

    #587659
    Bodhi
    42 Posts

    This TR does not suck!

    Nice write up and sweet pics, Nomad.

    peace,
    D.

    #587660
    powderjunkie
    1669 Posts

    Another amazing TR Nomad.

    I like the hot box pic…..or is that a steam room?

    #587661
    huevon
    124 Posts

    Man, you’re all over the place! Let me know if you’re going to be in Washington…

    #587662
    Camgina
    91 Posts

    Well, looks like you had a good trip. How was rogers pass i wish i could have been there(spent over 20 days last year and zero this year 😥 ), i see you climbed Youngs. Did you descend via the ‘seven steps of heaven’ or ‘forever young'(the prominent skinny that falls straight from the summit). To let you guys in on a secret(im sure nomad will agree) Rogers Pass is probably the mecca in Northa America for Ski touring/mountaineering. With amazing ski terrain and super classic climbs like the NW ridge of Sir Macdonald

    I am glad you guys stayed at the Asulkan, i have never had the chance(i have only camped at the base of the Illecillewait and stayed in the Wheeler) but it saves you a hell of a lot of slogging. And yes they do it in luxury up there, i have seen people pulling kegs(full) up there.

    I take it you guys never made it to the icefields for the intended big faces? Spring conditions are comming in and i am looking for partners if you feel like coming back up for a week, i move to Jasper some time in may. Ill make it worth your while (Aemeer Coulier, 3/4 Coulier, Bryce, Athabasca, Andromeda, the list goes on and the possibilities are endless)

    Glad you had a good trip, i hope my pre-trip info served you well, and i look forward to the expanded trip report

    #587663
    skykilo
    24 Posts

    Looks like a great trip!

    #587664
    philfort
    31 Posts

    Ballsy trip, looks great. Was the couloir on Joffree a first descent?

    I sure hope you guys are being careful with your avy assessment… I want to make sure we see lots more of these great TRs!

    #587665
    nomad
    288 Posts

    I sure hope you guys are being careful with your avy assessment

    Conditions were pretty much bomber for the whole trip and greatly influenced our destinations. Would’ve gone to Rogers first if it was stable. If only we could be this lucky all the time. Radiation-weakened layers were probably the biggest hazard.

    Camgina – check your pms

    Huevon – keep May open….

    #587666
    jparker
    64 Posts

    You guys are crazy. Looks like fun. I stayed in the Asulkan for a few days earlier this year. Viz was terrible during the day, we did youngs ins total whiteout, traversed over to forever young, bagged it due to stability issues and then traversed way farther over to ski exxcellent powder. The best runs were at night via headlamp, it was much easier to see where you wer going.

    The hut at night

    The bootpack up to youngs on the seven steps of heaven. Not so heavenly this day.

    Headlamps. Cliff drop on the right.

    #587667
    jbaysurfer
    947 Posts

    JParker/Nomad! Sick photos both of you.

    Jpark: Digi? What kind? time lapse? I’ve got the pentax optio wp10, I’d take any tips you might offer for better bc images. I’m not sure I’ve found any time lapse options.

    cheers

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