Joanne’s Unnecessary Mountain Snowshoe Dec 28, 2020

Forums Trip Reports Joanne’s Unnecessary Mountain Snowshoe Dec 28, 2020

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    Karen Peters

    Three North Shore hikers met at 8:30 in the Cypress Downhill area to snowshoe along the Howe Sound Crest Trail to Unnecessary Mtn. All three of us managed to avoid paying the new $10 parking fee, one by parking in Lot 3b (the only free one) and the other two by parking on the adjacent roadsides and getting lucky.

    The day started out overcast and remained so all morning. At St. Marks Lookout there were no views to be had. But we stopped anyway so Alastair could have the first of his three (or was it four?) lunches. It was at this point that we put on our snowshoes as the snow was getting deeper and softer and the footprints were running out.

    It’s amazing how gazillions of people go to St. Marks every single day but hardly a soul goes beyond, in winter anyway. On this day we encountered exactly two hikers. These two young men had no snowshoes, no poles and from what we could see no microspikes. Their plan was to do a traverse from Cypress to Lions Bay, leaving a trail of very deep post-holes all the way. Since I haven’t seen anything in the news they must have made it.

    Somewhere along the way it started to clear up. But before that we had some pretty impressive sights of blue sky above us and a sea of clouds below us. Finally the fog below us went away too and we started seeing the rewards of our work. That is if one hikes for the views. Or to reach peaks for that matter. I myself have never subscribed to that school of thought.

    But reach a peak we did. Some discussion ensued regarding the bump we were standing on and Alastair did some subsequent research that is worth transcribing here:

    According to there has been a lot of confusion around the naming of the bumps around Unnecessary Mtn.  The original Unnecessary Mtn was the one that I climbed (1543m) today and that we could all see.  The original trail up to the Lions went over it (there is an 100m drop on the north side) which is why it was named Unnecessary.  However the bump to the south that we all climbed is higher- 1548m so some have argued that as the high point it should receive the name.  And some have argued that since there is a small bump 1490m 300m to its south that we went over, there should be three Unnecessarys – north, middle and south.  Bivouac decided that there should be two – Unnecessary South (the highest point which we all climbed); and Unnecessary North (which we could all see 400m to the north and which I climbed).

    After Alastair’s third lunch on top of Unnecessary South the group made a plan to split up. I, not wanting to descend in the dark, preferred to call it a day and turn back accompanied by Joanne. Alastair proceeded to Unnecessary North and returned in the dark under a full moon, which I understand was blissful.

    Joanne and I reached our cars at 5:00 as the last rays of daylight were disappearing, exactly as planned. Strava says we hiked 17.16 km and gained 1,120 in elevation. It was a most excellent adventure in the glorious mountains of Vancouver’s north shore.

    • This topic was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Karen Peters.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Karen Peters.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Karen Peters.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Karen Peters.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Karen Peters.
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