Large club maintained hut. $10/person. The hut is located at the west end of the "Long Lake" below Mount Gandalf and Mount Shadowfax. The Brian Waddington Memorial Hut - one of the nicest in the range - sleeps 20 in the 3-chambered loft, and more downstairs. There is also an outhouse, and running water is available from a nearby stream year round. One Propane Canister Coleman Stove and Two White Gas Coleman Lanterns, and a cast iron fry pan are available for general use. There is no heating of any kind (wood or kerosene) so plan to have a warm set up or people for body heat.
Meadows around the area are fragile, so please don't camp in them if there is hut space available. The VOC has invested a fair whack of time in building the hut, and interest is high - it will likely be full on major holidays (Christmas-NewYears, Easter) and during university reading breaks. If you dislike crowd scenes it may be best to consider a different destination. The hut is open to all and there is no reservation system, however, the VOC wiki site is used to coordinate use: VOC Hut Reservation Page. The VOC encourages everyone intending on using the hut to register. The VOC asks users for $10/person/night to help with maintenance efforts. Donations can be sent to the Varsity Outdoor Club, Room 3500 – 6133 University Blvd, Vancouver, B.C. V6T 1Z1 or deposited in the donation box at the hut. Please report problems to the above address or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The hut is a great place for hiking (easy access to McGillivray area or head W to Noel Creek and Tenquille Lake (2-3 days)), skiing, bouldering and climbing.
Note: the names of Gandalf and Shadowfax are reversed on map 92 J/10. Gandalf is S. of Aragorn and Shadowfax is by itself to the east. The peaks are correctly named in Fairley's guide.
Access: To reach the hut, drive up to Birkenhead Lake park, and turn off up the Phelix Creek road. Drive to the end of the road on the west bank of the creek (4WD), hike 15min north to the end of the clearcut, and pick up a trail which is followed for approx. 2 hours to the hut. See VOC huts page or VOC Wiki for more info.
Human activity in the area should be avoided from August 15 to October 15 as a wildlife biologist anticipates disturbance of grizzly and black bear feeding in these months. The peaks of Mounts Shadowfax, Gandalf and Aragorn are short day trips from Long Lake.
Access Note: The Phelix Creek area is an important habitat for Grizzly Bears and a local wildlife biologist suggests people stay out of the area from Aug 15th to Oct 15th to allow the bears to feed without disturbance. Please stay away in this period. Update on this access note - September 2000. The area is grizzly habitat, but access is not prohibited. VOC was simply asked by the local biologist to discourage use during the indicated period, and access is not officialy discouraged by the government.
History: The Brian Waddington Hut was completed August 1st, 1998.
2016.05.23 Mitch Sulkers - Greenery growing in. Slide passable.
We headed partway up the access FSR. No problems at the slides in terms of passing, thanks to parties earlier this season. Didn't really want to pinstripe the truck further, so didn't head up too far, but the road surface was in quite good shape as far as we travelled. 4X4 HC preferable.
2016.01.25 Richard So - Recommended $10 Donation
Note that the recommended donation is now $10, not $5 as shown on this page. We spent a weekend skiing above the hut, noticing a widespread avalanche cycle.
2015.12.06 Colleen Craig - Cold but mice-y
Door wasn't shut so some snow had drifted in. Beware - mice are active.
2014.09.09 Andrew Wong - Access is closed due to forest fire in area
Phelix Creek FSR is closed by the Ministry of Forests starting at Blackwater Lake Road due to fire fighting in the area. The closure also affects the Brian Waddington Trail and the Brian Waddington Hut. The Birkenhead Lake Park Campground and the Birkenhead Estates are not affected by the closure. See http://bcwildfire.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/DisplayArticle.asp?ID=2262 for more information.
2012.07.22 Peter Malacarne - Repairs underway
Kodos to the VOC. A VOC work crew has carried windows, cans of paint and other implements for repairs to the hut. The cabled bridge at the head of the lake has been swept away and the crew got wet boots and feet. This was my first visit to the hut.
2010.07.13 David Dharney - road access
tree down (2-3 foot diameter), blocking road a few minutes beyond slide area with large boulder
2009.08.03 Brian Buick - Hut repairs
A group of about 20 VOC members were at the hut this weekend repairing the roof, moving/fixing up the outhouse and painting inside - everyone camped nearby because of the paint fumes.
2009.08.03 Evan Morris - Hut Maintenance Update
A large group of 20 VOCers were up at the hut over the long weekend. A long list of maintenance items were crossed off, including painting the interior of the hut white, exterior trim and skirt painting, general cleanup and garbage removal, fixed/added bug screens to all windows, work on the heat exchanger to improve the mildew situation, more roof repairs (added flashing and expanding foam to roof cap above honeymoon suite), installing new information signs in the hut, new curtains on all the windows and foyer. The big job of the weekend was digging of the new outhouse hole and moving the extremely heavy outhouse. A few nearby campers were recruited to help with this task. The outhouse was moved approx 15m to the North. The old hole was backfilled and the old trail now ends at a 'dirt patch', but it is safe to walk on (but not recommended for obvious reasons). Some trail work was also done. The trail around the North side of the lake was improved and a new bridge was built at the outlet of the lake. This trail is a much nicer walk than the trail around the South of the lake.
2008.10.19 Scott Nelson - Roof leak (hopefully) fixed
The leaky roof problem was diagnosed and repaired over the weekend. The problem was that there was a large void underneath the roof cap that filled with blowing snow in the winter, then melted when the air in the hut got really warm. The cavity has now been mostly blocked off from the top so it can't fill with blowing snow.
2008.01.17 Piotr Forysinski - Sea to Sky Backcountry Forum
"The future of backcountry skiing in the Phelix Creek drainage - the area surrounding the Brian Waddington Memorial Hut - is at stake. Currently Kevin Kriese, on behalf of the government, has all but decided to allow snowmobile use of this traditionally skier-oriented area. Letters of support are needed now if this decision is going to be reversed. See the VOC wiki page @ http://www.ubc-voc.com/wiki/Sea_to_Sky_Backcountry_Forum for more details." Please help!!!
2007.07.26 Christian Veenstra - Appliance Update
There are now two working Coleman stoves in the hut, as well as a catalytic heater, and the globes have been replaced on both lanterns. All appliances are white gas only.
2007.03.20 Bram van Straaten - Access and snow update
Road plowed and 2WD driveable to [Road1046-Blackwater Road] - [Road1049-Phelix Creek Road] junction. Bottom of Phelix Creek Road has some debris on road and is starting to melt out. Following the newly flagged [Road2052-Phelix Creek Trail] on the West side of the creek is easy. Excellent coastal powder skiing on N-facing slopes. Breakable sun crust on S-slopes and wind crusts near summits.
2007.01.29 Scott Nelson - 3m snowpack
Height of snow is 3m at the hut. We found reasonably good skiing on sheltered north facing aspects nearby. A thin breakable crust/windslab was present in areas that were more exposed to the wind. South facing slopes were all a mess of sun induced avalanche debris
2005.07.13 Zoran Vasic - Hut was empty last weekend
We were alone in the beautiful BW hut. It's quite difference from the report Mike input here for Canada Day. Hut is in great condition.
2005.07.01 Mike Peel - No Vacancy on the July long weekend
There was 21 people sleeping (upstairs and downstairs) and 8 more camping outside on the long weekend. The cabin looks in good shape.
2004.01.02 Scott Nelson - Appliance Update
Both Kerosene heaters are out of commission, so don't bother bringing any Kerosene up to the hut. The two Coleman stoves work fine, and there are two coleman lanterns for illumination. The stoves and lanterns take white gas only. See Trip Report
54 2017.02.25 Winter Trip to Shadowfax Shoulder Martin Ortmayr
20 2010.08.02 Shadowfax (south west face) Route Tim Gage
26 2010.08.01 Aragorn to Peregrine: High quality ridge ramble Tim Gage
42 2006.07.16 Phelix Creek Rambles Klaus Haring
31 2006.02.25 Phelix Creek on Skis: Ski into Brian Waddington Hut Klaus Haring
34 2004.01.01 Mount Taillefer Loop from Brian Waddington Hut Scott Nelson
29 2003.08.11 Gandalf, Aragorn and Shadowfax from the Brian Waddington Hut Rhys Gibb
35 2002.07.27 Gandalf - Aragorn Loop from Brian Waddington Cabin Robin Tivy
43 2001.06.23 Taillefer-Shadowfax Loop Fred Touche
4 Great Escape from the Rain (Brian Waddington Hut) Zoran Vasic
4 Mount Taillefer from the Southwest Mike Peel