Mt Strachan – July 14, 2018

NSH Forums Trip Reports Mt Strachan – July 14, 2018

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    Mark Latham
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    Based on our July 6 recce, we made the cautious decision to avoid the Christmas Gully (Montizambert Creek) route.

    On July 14, we six members plus one guest met at 9am at Park Royal North Park & Ride. New members often have trouble finding it. How about adding an explanation on this page?

    Started the hike from Cypress Mountain downhill ski parking lot at 9:45am on a cloudless warm day. For a B hike, our pace was pretty relaxed. Heading to the right (east), we left the ski slopes and followed the well-marked Baden Powell Trail through the woods for about 20 minutes, crossing Cypress Creek. Soon turned left onto a shortcut trail that parallels the creek and heads northeast uphill for 20 minutes.

    Most trail maps show this small rough trail, but it has no tape or metal markers. GPS can be great assurance for not getting lost. I had recently installed the free version of GaiaGPS on my iPhone (also available for Android). I already prefer it over two other free apps I’ve used, which are also pretty good (Topo Maps Canada and Maps.me). See below for a screenshot of the track we made on Gaia.

    Turned left onto the Old Strachan Trail, which is marked but hard to follow in places, especially where occasionally covered with patches of lingering snow. There were some bugs (no-see-ums), so we found a breezy spot to stop for a snack.

    Three times that day, we paused to help other hikers find their way. I told them we’re a North Shore Hikers group. Maybe we should carry NSH info cards to recruit new members?

    Walked across a pretty alpine meadow, and into the woods again to start the final climb. After pausing at the Canadian forces 1963 plane crash site, headed up the rough rocky trail, using both hands to clamber up some sections. About an hour uphill brought us to our destination, the south peak of Mt Strachan. The views were gorgeous!

    Enjoyed a leisurely lunch, then headed back down the easy way, following the Collins ski run gravel road from the peak to the crash site. Walked that pretty meadow again, then back to Collins all the way to the base of the ski area, where we saw a large black bear. Fortunately it was heading northwest, away from us.

    Our hike was 8 km long with 520 m climb, and took us 5 hours 15 minutes including stops. As you can see below, we weren’t exactly hurting by the end of it! 😉

    In future I would wait until more snow has melted, go up Christmas Gully, north peak, south peak, returning via one of the south side routes we followed today. That’s for a typical summer hike. On the other hand, I really enjoyed the early summer snow-covered hike up Christmas Gully on June 4, 2017, led by Maurice Lyttle. We were all experienced snow hikers wearing spikes, and there was less exposed rock to worry about sliding down and hitting.

    • This topic was modified 4 months ago by   Mark Latham. Reason: Minor details
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