Salal Creek 27/08/11

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.”

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