Blowdown-Van Horlick divide 06/09/08

Chris at the Blowdown-Van Horlick Divide:
“Jana, Peter and I braved the unknown to visit what turned out to be a beautiful untouched wilderness on the Blowdown-Van Horlick divide. The Blowdown road was in good 2wd condition – some minor rutting and a new culvert at 9 km. Also, a new waterbar on the hill past 9 km and possibly more further along (you may have minor scraping in a 2wd). We intended on taking Branch 4 at 9.5 km but it has just been decommissioned – the culverts and bridges have been pulled and a big rock blocks the road at the start (but could be avoided in a narrow 4wd). The road has been copiously waterbarred (5 in 20 m at one point). We walked the road to the end (just before an avalanche path – perhaps 2 km), bushwacked 100 m and climbed a second avalanche path about 400 m to steep meadows. We sidehilled to the upper valley (tricky due to wet plants) and wandered beautiful meadows to the pass. Descending into the next valley, we camped near some small ponds. In the morning, we checked out the main lake (beautiful) and spotted some mountain goats high on a ridge. We meandered back up to the pass along a different route and descended back into the Blowdown valley along the edge of the scree slopes (lots of rocks and a short brushy bit just before a wetland so slow going). Definitely going back and spending some more time exploring what looks like easy ridges to the NW.”

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