TLT on the TLT (Twin Lakes Trail):
Happiness is finding a crew looking for adventure.
Happiness is hiking through creeks, meadows bursting with wildflowers, and butterfly laden trails.
Happiness is jumping into a frigid lake after a hot hike.
Happiness is sharing meals, stories, and laughter.
Happiness is playing cards in a tent when the rain is pounding.
Happiness is waking up to glimpses of blue sky and a million dollar view.
Happiness is setting off on a day of scrambling, wanting to go higher, further…
Happiness is basking in the sun on the summit, watching the clouds float by.
Happiness is taking in the sea of mountains, planning our next mountain adventure.
Happiness is eating the most amazing home-made vegan meal.
Happiness is learning a new card game and laughing until we wept with tears.
Happiness is waking up and enjoying the silent beauty, knowing that we have all this wilderness to ourselves.
Happiness is… Twin Lakes
Thank you Ileana C and Shane P for a most amazing trip. It makes me want to organize more trips!”
Chris M. at Russet Lake:
“Our small group of two went with a backup plan – 2-night trip to Russet Lake. I thought we would take the gondola up and hike down route. However, the gondola is shut down until Nov 27 so we started hiking from the village at noon. The Singing Pass Trail is very easy to follow, though there are two washouts, with the Harmony Creek one being the worst. After joining the trail from Musical Bumps the snow became much deeper than anticipated and I was postholing frequently. Because of that, just before dark we set up a tent on the snow and went to sleep with a nice view of Black Tusk. The snow was firmer in the morning and travel was much easier. We went directly over Cowboy Ridge and down to the lake and hut. Russet Lake had only recently frozen over and fresh water was still flowing out (I don’t know if this is available all winter long). It was clear and beautiful. The views were especially terrific from Cowboy Ridge, where we had gone back up to watch the colours after sunset. The temperature dropped and it was a very cold night in the hut. I wasn’t really ready for winter yet. The trail out was frozen and awkward in a few spots but still only took about 4.5 hours to reach the village of Whistler.”
Stacey A. at Marriott Meadows:
“A long-weekend two-night trip to Marriott Meadows and Rohr Lake. Four of us made the trip and were fortunate to have a driver with 4WD 🙂 It’s a short access road to the trail head if you have to walk though. Lots of bugs the whole time: mosquitos, black flies, deer flies, you name it, they were biting us. I would suggest bringing bug hats at the least (or waiting until later in the season). One of our crew had a small over-bed mosquito net that pretty much saved us as we could eat under it, etc. That being said, my skin was mostly covered, I used almost an entire small bottle of Ben’s 30% deet spray, and I still managed to get almost 100 bites! The others seemed to have fared a bit better.
First night was spent at Rohr Lake. The trail to Rohr Lake is muddy in several spots. The last steep hill up to the lake is definitely muddy and slippery and requires care! Alternatively, you can head up the boulder field next to the path with ease. There seem to be about 6 spots for camping at the lake. No toilet or cache, and the trees aren’t ideal for hanging food. Lake is cold but swimmable! The hike to Mt. Rohr takes about 2 more hours from the lake. It’s mostly boulder fields, but well cairned for the way.
Second night was spent at the lake just below the Wendy Thompson Hut (we heard the hut was overfull with a large group of 22, plus others). Again the hike was muddy with a few creek crossings on logs. The terrain was varied with forest paths, meadows, and boulder fields. No apparent obvious camp spots on the lake, just put up our tents on a dry patch of grass. Lots of hikes from here to explore. The lake was cold but refreshing and great for swimming!
All around beautiful views for both areas!”
Cara at Salal Creek and Athelney Pass:
“One adventerous hiker joined me in exploring this rugged and remote valley. The trailhead is accessed via the Upper Lillooet FSR which is currently active. There is a pumice mine at 48 km and active logging off a spur at 38 km. Take the right fork of the Lillooet FSR at 45.5 km, signed for Garibaldi Pumice Ltd. Before you reach the gate to the pumice mine, take the rather overgrown and nastily waterbarred road on the left. The road is very rough in places and requires high clearance or incredible nerves and driving skills. The trail to the creek is well marked though the entrance/exit is not from the creek side. Now the rock hopping starts. Near west Salal an alternate route through the trees is marked (again hard to see). Another minor detour through the trees exists and is quite steep. The entrance to this was not marked so we sailed past. Yet more rocks brings you to a well marked entrance to the forest section along the east fork of salal. The avalanche chutes saw plenty of action this past winter so the alder has been flattened and quite a few trees downed roots and all. Once out of the trees 5 km remains to the pass. The company currently holding the mining exploration rights to the area have made quite a mess just past the most recent landslide. This area saw a lot of snow over the winter, some of which still covers over the creek past the slide. We walked on the snow and were able to avoid the creek crossings below the glaciers. Once in the pass, another snow accumulation permits crossing to the west side of the creek. The mining company, with the help of the BC govt has removed the oil barrels on the bench to the west of the pass. Not sure about the lone barrel further to the south. This weekend the weather was perfect, the flowers were amazing, and the views were stunning. Ian and I spent the middle day exploring the bench to the west, then packed part way out. The third day we compleated the trek and finished up with a well deserved dinner in Squamish.”
Michelle on the Skyline and Silverdaisy trails:
“No rest for the wicked! Three early mornings allowed us to maximize the mileage on this 500 something cumulative km trek spanning two provincial parks. Skyline as a cross over hike was a fun and unique experience with 5 hikers from Skagit and 4 hikers from Manning enjoying more sunshine than drizzle (and just a flash of lightning) before meeting up at Mowich for an enjoyable evening together. West of Mowich, Skyline does offer fine views of Ross Lake and the North Cascades. However continual views of Hozameen, endless peaks, valleys and the Lightning Lakes chain, kilometres of wildflower meadows, access to ascend Lone Goat and Snow Camp Mountain (a fine lunch spot enjoyed by both groups) is afforded by Skyline east of Mowich. Both groups also tackled a portion of the Hozameen Ridge trail 900 m west of Mowich (a spectacular ridge walk on a clear day). Reunited in Manning a dip in the river, some grub at the East Gate Diner, some refreshments from the General Store and cards at the Hamptons rejuvenated our band.
Of note – still some water trickling at Mowich, but I was glad I packed in all my water. Bugs (particularly flies) are better than last year in Manning, but were enough of a nuisance (as proved by my swollen eyelid bite). The snow is ALL gone and flower season should hit full bloom in the next few weeks.
The Silverdaisy trail is in fine shape, though easy to get side tracked and wander off in the beautiful meadows up top (pay attention and look sharp for the flagging). Silverdaisy makes you work for it, but the payoff of alpine meadows with a panorama of mountain views made for a very satisfied group. Mental or GPS breadcrumbs are useful for descent from the summit (easy to loose the route you travelled in on with little or no meadow footbed). The through and through hike may have shaved some time but navigation to Cayuse took effort and required GPS (lots of roads, lots of choices, little or no distinguishment on screen between active roads and now tree choked roads). An enjoyable adventure, but best (and more scenic) to just return via Sumallo Grove.
Summary: Nine enthusiastic hikers – check! Two cars + two phenomenally dedicated drivers – check! Two through and through hikes completed- check! Several frosty shakes and slices of pie consumed. Nine content hikers.
PS It’s a small world – 4 out of 8 groups on Skyline knew each other by 0–1 degree of separation, 2 groups of which were fellow Wanderungers.”
Paige on the Wild Side Trail:
“Ten of us hiked the Wild Side Trail, which is a little known hike across Flores Island. It requires a water taxi ride from Tofino to Ahousaht, which is a First Nations town on Flores. The hike to Cow Bay is only 10 km through the forest with a good amount of beach walking for the tired or lazy. Not many people know about the hike, and you’re almost guaranteed to see bald eagles, otters, seals, sea lions and possibly bears or wolves.
It’s definitely worth making the trek out that way – the sunset at Cow Bay is gorgeous (see Chris M’s photo in the Wanderung Flickr Group) and we watched whales only a few feet from us while we collected mussels to eat at the campfire. It’s also possible to kayak there from Tofino.”
Michelle on a cycle tour of Pender Island:
“Despite some on the spot re-planning courtesy BC Ferries and Parks Canada, eight of us had a very enjoyable trip cycle touring, hiking and playing tourist on both North and South Pender Island. Three of us stayed at Centennial Friday before meeting up with the rest of the group who arrived Saturday morning. The Saturday market was indeed full of delicious and creative items and a worth while stop. Our private peninsula camp at Welcome Bay Farms was a lovely setting for our base camp for the remainder of the trip. Local Island hospitality and great company made this trip complete!”