The Coast Range B.C./Mt Bute/Waddington etc.

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Synchronicity

Trad climber
British Columbia, Canada
Topic Author's Original Post - Mar 4, 2012 - 09:26pm PT
My whole life growing up on the inside coast of Vancouver Island I can't count the number of times I've stared over to the mainland at the craggy peaks that dot the coastline. From the summits of many island peaks, on a clear day you can see deep into the coast mountains even to Waddington.

The other night I re-watched the Dean Potter wingsuit flight off Mt Bute and was blown away by what little I had heard about this remarkable granite peak. I found this route School of Rock, 50 pitches or so long, over 6000' of vertical http://aaj.americanalpineclub.org/climbs-and-expeditions/north-america/canada/british-columbia/2009-mt-bute-school-of-rock-by-b-kay/

How many of you west coasters have climbed in the coast range? Do you fly in up the coast from the mainland or water taxi? I've been toying with the idea of an old school sailboat assist into the inlet and bushwhack into the mountains but maybe I'm just a sucker for punishment.

What are the logistics of exploring this area, what are the hazards? What new activity has been done in the Coast Range? There's very little granite on the island here and apart from cragging in Squamish, my real interests lie in the alpine rock. I've been staring at these peaks far too long and its about damn time I got to know them a little more intimately.
Tricouni

Mountain climber
Vancouver
Mar 4, 2012 - 09:33pm PT
Unless you've got lots of time, I'd suggest flying in, unless you want to do some exploring in the John Clarke style. If it's granite you want, There's some stuff in the Raleigh-Gilbert area, Bute (of course), lots to do in the Klatassine area. Fly into the upper Tellot Glacier from Bluff Lake (heli), and climb your brains out on the granite there.

So much to do.
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Mar 4, 2012 - 09:36pm PT
How many of you west coasters have climbed in the coast range?

We all have. And a few of us survived. Most didn't though, so the right way to start this whole discussion is to channel Locker, and say..


Yur gonna die!

Seriously though, there are some people posting here who might be able to tell you a thing or two. They'll step forward, or not, but since you brought up the idea of starting from the Island and crossing the water to get to the mountains, you should start your research here: http://kobus.ca/adventures/waddington/index.html

That was one the most badass things ever done in the Coast Range.

And I think Rob Wood did a lot of water approaches, but I don't know him and he doesn't post here.

laughingman

Mountain climber
Seattle WA
Mar 4, 2012 - 10:38pm PT
I did the NOLS waddington range traverse years back....



The approaches suck..... We spent 4 day just to get to the to the first glaciers... We started on the inland side and went out the knights inlet.

We started at Twist Lake and ended at Canyon lake at which point we were took a sea plane out.

Credit: laughingman



Credit: laughingman


The view were amazing

waddington range traverse <br/>
Taken from the West flank of Jubilee onto ...
waddington range traverse
Taken from the West flank of Jubilee onto the confederation glacier. Mt Waddington can be seen in the distance...
Credit: laughingman

Tricouni

Mountain climber
Vancouver
Mar 4, 2012 - 10:46pm PT
If you've been gazing across the water from, say, Comox, why not take a boat up Homfray Channel and do the NW buttress on Mt. Denman? I've looked at it for many years and never been in that particular area. Looks good, and rock should be ok.
laughingman

Mountain climber
Seattle WA
Mar 4, 2012 - 10:52pm PT
Forgot I did a TR of my trip

http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1030812/TR_Waddington_Range_traverse_w#Post1030812
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Mar 4, 2012 - 11:07pm PT
John Clarke said of the Coast Range "It is remote, rugged and very very wet". Sums it up for me.

You can get airborne and chopper from The Spit in CR or Beaver into the head of some inlet and start in the kelp beds. That's what John used to do.

Others who were, you know, more gainfully employed ( ergo less time to spend ) tended to figure the ratio of cheap:fast with flying ( e.g. where from , what machine ) and do that.

Kobus is gnarly badass. ANd the guy is a freakin' fizzix genius to boot.

But, yes, all the Canucks on this silly forum have spent time bailing tents in the great Coastal Rainge of BC :-) Ghost and I know stuff about one another we prolly should not know but do nevertheless because of multi-day rainstorms.

Honestly the best way to go is to get yerself hold of some of the maps
http://atlas.nrcan.gc.ca/site/english/maps/topo/map
........and sniff around to where you think you might wanna go.

Got lotsa time ? Approach Munday-style by kayak, thrash, ohsh#t, icecoreglacier, glacier, interesting route, summit and return.

Got no time ? Whup whup whup whup and have cash ready to give to Mike, Lawrence or whoever is yer pilot. Make sure you have your pickup figgered out. Be smart and have Extra In Case of Storm. You can always carry a satphone ( my brother does ) to call yer sister for wx updates :-D

Don't worry about Big Fat Routes but go out for the adventure. And remember:

Remote

Rugged

Very very wet.


All the best for massive wonderful adventures.
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Mar 4, 2012 - 11:19pm PT
Ghost and I know stuff about one another we prolly should not know but do nevertheless because of multi-day rainstorms.

True, and you can read about it here: http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/759442/The-definitive-Canadian-climbing-underwear-thread

If you read that thread a bit, you'll see that GF is in it. Ask him about the Coast Range. Bruce Kay posts here a lot, and also knows a thing or two about the Coast Range, and about Mt. Bute. Likewise Jim Brennan and Bruce MacD. And Hamie. And Tricouni. And probably a bunch of others.

In fact the depth of Coast Range knowledge and experience here is staggering.
Synchronicity

Trad climber
British Columbia, Canada
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 5, 2012 - 02:03am PT
Thanks for the insight all and the stories. Yeah I know what wet is, this has been one of the rainiest seasons I can remember and I've been on the island a long time.

I was thinking of doing the inlet approach and bushwahck if I can find some objectives that aren't too far from the coast. I'd love to get deeper in and climb some of the more epic peaks in the area with Waddington being a lifelong goal. I still have to sharpen my skills a lot before that kind of stuff though. Mainly I would like to do some trips out there to get to know the area, maybe scramble a few peaks before doing anything too comitting.

Besides the fact that I might end up waiting forever for a weather window that doesn't come. I was advised to be prepared for a long stay. Approaching by sailboat/ zodiac would be a grea way to negate having to haul everything as we could be out there for a month or more and just re-load on supplies from the boat between excursions.

I've read Rob Wood's Towards the Unknown Mountains which chronicles the slog in to Waddington as well as some beautiful other adventures. I'm still up for some old fashioned bushwhacking but hopefully thats not all I'd do.

Any of you got pictures from out there you would like to share?
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Mar 5, 2012 - 02:14am PT
Its a bit of a gamble with the weather sometimes, but really anything in the northwest end of north america is.

I find the best tactic is to block off a reasonable amount of time, wait for a bomber weather forecast (cragging in squamish maybe in the mean time) then roll the dice and fly in, or if the weather seems too dodgy go to plan B... the Sierras or something like that.

When you score a bulls eye, its as good as it gets!
bmacd

Boulder climber
100% Canadian
Mar 5, 2012 - 02:35am PT
All I can say is there sure is a lot of UFO activity in the coast range, and yes I got it on video
Tricouni

Mountain climber
Vancouver
Mar 5, 2012 - 02:39am PT
gf reminded me that the dreaded Beckey may have struck on Mt Denman. No matter: you should do it anyways; it's in your back yard and you can the wall between the NW and SW ridges.

Mt Denman from our camp on Mt Hayes, July 27, 2010. NW buttress on lef...
Mt Denman from our camp on Mt Hayes, July 27, 2010. NW buttress on left of Denman, SW ridge on right. Homfray Creek is dark, in shadow, on left. Homfray Channel below.
Credit: (c) Glenn Woodsworth

Extra points if you can identify the big peak with lots of snow in the background.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Mar 5, 2012 - 02:53am PT
Big stab but I think it's Raleigh Gilbert.




Did I win the camels behind door number three ?



:-)
Jim Brennan

Trad climber
Vancouver Canada
Mar 5, 2012 - 02:58am PT
Tami wins the CAMEL !

(It comes with the Camel dude too)

Credit: Jim Brennan
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Mar 5, 2012 - 03:00am PT
If I identify the mountain just to the right of the Camel's ass, do I win Tami?
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Mar 5, 2012 - 09:23am PT
By the way, google jason kruk to see a video of one of the coolest all land (and water!) based trips into the Waddington range in quite some time

I think its on his blog. It s a short teaser so here's what happens:

With Tony Richardson (Son of Howie!) they put into Twist creek in dinky little one man inflateables (half price at Canadian Tire) , up the Scimitar, up and over Fury Gap, very nearly do the FA of the south pillar Wadd NW peak, out toScar Creek (dragging rafts the whole way) float down to Homathko camp and tide water.

Woo hoo!
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Mar 5, 2012 - 09:34am PT
I figure that must be Gilbert as well. Right neighborhood anyway.

You could do the same trip my Dad did in the fifties: Up the southgate river, spin the bottle and pick the wrong summit on Gilbert, then epic retreat.... to get back to work on monday

Bonus points if you use Trapper Nelsons, cary Iron rations and chop down trees with ice axes!

Tami, ya remember iron rations?
gf

climber
Mar 5, 2012 - 09:45am PT
Now hold on bruce, you're channelling those damm CT shovels you swore by for so long. Those rafts were made by doug at feathercraft on granville island for Alpaca and loaned by the godfather of sensible design, Mike Blenkarn, to the lads. Take note of the swim club style hand paddles for navigating; brisk eh boys?
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Mar 5, 2012 - 09:53am PT
really? thats too high tech.

story ruined.
Jim Brennan

Trad climber
Vancouver Canada
Mar 5, 2012 - 11:54am PT
Forgive the photo reposting.

Here's some pics from a perfect weather trip to the Tiedemann Glacier in 1994.

Tiedemann Tower:

Credit: Jim Brennan

Stiletto to Dentiform:

Credit: Jim Brennan

Temperature inversion on Dentiform:

Credit: Jim Brennan

Bravo Peak and Mt. Waddington from Sunny Knob:

Credit: Jim Brennan
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