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Pelion Mountain  British Columbia   #741
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges

Height: 2312 m -> 7585 feet
Prominence?: 707 m  
Line Parent?: Mount Tantalus (5.5 km away, at bearing 159 degrees)
Greater Parent: Mount Tantalus (5.5 km away)

Location:   49.86442,-123.35641     49:51:52, -123:21:23   10U 474385 5523617 (19 km SE of Falk Lake). (19 km NW of Brackendale). NTS Mapsheet: 092.G.14   AreaCode: EM93/ID65
First Ascent: 1944 V. Brink; B. McLellan
Pelion's Final NW Ridge Section
Located at the north end of the Tantalus Range, Pelion Mountain is a moderately technical summit. Together with its close neighbour, Ossa Mountain, they comprise the northern bastion of the Tantalus Range. Although the Sigurd Creek Trail approaches within 2km of the peak, its rough condition, a one-way distance of ~10km and 2200m elevation gain contributes to keeping the numbers down. Pelion Mountain is normally climbed today from Sigurd Creek Trail. The trail makes the climb a few notches less demanding than what a climb of Mount Tantalus used to be, before aircraft support lowered the standard to what it is today. However, the original flavour of the early climbs can still be obtained by following the first ascent route from Zenith Lake. This approach adds a river crossing by canoe, bushwhack through 4000ft of jungle and timber to Zenith Lake and a long approach from Zenith-Tantalus col to the SW ridge. This three-day climb is probably not contemplated much these days except by masochists and young offenders serving punishment.

Pelion Mountain is surrounded extensively by snow and ice but where the rock does outcrop, the rock is generally hard and well-jointed. An exception may be the bottom section of the indistinct W rib, which is more slabby and sparsely-jointed. From the S, the mountain exposes steeply-tilted shear zones, almost vertical, along a SW-NE ridgeline which are fracturing into jagged subpeaks, probably all unclimbed. The W rib of Pelion is the highest of these features, over 200m high but undercutting along its shear zone has contributed to steeply-slanted, smooth slabs and ledges. The subpeaks offer rewards for first ascent routes if one can be distracted from the dominant peaks.

Pelion Mountain is often climbed on skis by its north glacier or NW ridge. A difficult step at 6800ft can be avoided by heading up to the 7000ft notch at the head of the glacier E of the indistinct NW ridge and deeking around a rock tower on its south side to regain the upper icefield through another notch. The steepness and overall length of the ~4000ft run down the north glacier arguably makes it the best alpine ski descent in the Tantalus Range.

Parties traversing the Tantalus Range from N to S would normally climb Pelion's NW ridge from Sigurd Creek, cross to the S side through the 7000ft col, 500m NE of the summit and traverse SW across steep S slopes to gain the ridgeline heading SE towards Zenith-Tantalus col. Crossing the NE ridge lower down and further E than the 7000ft col presents an intervening cleaver blocking progress almost all the way to the bottom of Mawby Creek. A variant used to approach Zenith Mountain from Sigurd Creek was worked out by Klaus Haring. It crosses the NE ridge at 5700ft, 1.75km due NE of Pelion Mountain, descending to ~4800ft in Mawby Creek to get around the cleaver, climbing through the open basin 1.5km SE of Pelion and gaining the head of Mawby Creek at 5650ft. The mountain photo shows the distinct cleaver feature on the righthand side of the shot.

Name Notes: Pelion, like most of the peaks in the Tantalus range was named according to a Greek god theme. "The Pelion" is the name of a small peninsula in Greece, just northeast of Volos, which has a very different terrain and climate from the surrounding region, being lush and very rugged. It was by legend one of the last holdouts of the race of centaurs in the Archaic era, and was where Herakles (Hercules) was tutored by the wise centaur Chiron, who was known for his learning.

Route Summaries exist for this mountain, but are only available to paid members.

Trip Reports within 1 km
44 2016.08.13 New Routes and First Ascents in the Ossa Region Nicholas Gobin
40 2015.06.28 Pelion Mountain in a day Sara Kuitunen
53 2015.05.02 Tantalus Traverse in a day Ryan Allderman
67 2007.04.21 Route to Pelion Northwest Ridge from Sigurd Trail Paul Kubik
39 2006.08.12 Tantalus High Traverse: Sigurd Creek to Lake Lovely Water Doug Brown (Vancouver)
50 2002.09.21 Pokosha-Sigurd Creeks traverse, Pelion Mountain climb Paul Kubik
29 2001.07.07 Ossa Mountain - North Ridge Yanik Berube
18 2000.09.24 Ossa Mountain Northwest buttress Route Pierre Signore
12 1999.04.28 Ossa Mountain - new route on North Face Drew Brayshaw
64 1994.07.15 Clowhom to Ashlu Traverse, and Ossa West Ridge Norm Schmidt
33 1993.03.20 Ossa Mountain West Ridge Route Paul Kubik
19 1968.04.04 Pelion - Skitour auf den Mt. Pelion (Deutsche) Paul Kubik
26 1968.04.04 Pelion Mountain, North Ridge - first ascent (1968) Paul Kubik
12 1900.01.01 Ossa Mountain Northeast Face Route Paul Kubik
11 null Ossa Mountain North ridge Route Yanik Berube
11 null Ossa Mountain East Ridge Route Paul Kubik
12 null Ossa Mountain North Face Route Paul Kubik
13 null Ossa Mountain Climbing Routes Route Paul Kubik


Subject Photos   View Thumbnails
16 Pelion's Final NW Ridge Section Chris Gooliaff
13 Sigurd Peak and Pelion Mountain from the north Paul Kubik
7 Pelion Summit Ridge in Winter-like Conditions Peter Gumplinger
6 Paragliding off Pelion Brett Logan
6 Pelion "Gully Route" Brett Logan
6 Ossa and Pelion from Sigurd Peak John Baldwin
5 Pelion's Prominent Sub Peaks Brett Logan
4 Pelion Mountain - Northwest Side Fred Touche
4 Pelion Mountain, western aspect Yanik Berube

Placename Photos
10 Northern Tantalus Range 90 Degree Panorama Paul Kubik
7 Pelion Mountain and Mount Ossa from Sigurd Creek Headwaters Norm Schmidt
6 Looking down the North Summit Ridge on Pelion Mountain Peter Gumplinger
6 Cloudburst Mountain - Southwest Side Fred Touche
5 Zenith Mountain - Northwest Side Fred Touche
4 Ossa Mountain - East Side Fred Touche