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West to East Traverse of Ymir Mountain
Timestamp Free: 2018.10.15 - 02:46:21
Ranges: North America Ranges / Columbia Mountains / Selkirk Mountains / Nelson Range
  (1 days)
Participants: Doug Brown, Kumo the Dog Snow slopes to 45 degrees, class 2 to 3 rock.
A man and his dog traverse Ymir Mountain from the west to the east and have some fun boot (or paw) skiing down.
[photo]ymir_route.jpg[caption]Ymir Mountain in Winter. Route taken shown in red - travelled from right to left, with the start out of the photo.[/photo]

 Access: take the Whitewater ski hill access road off of highway 6 about 10 km south of Nelson. Park at the day lodge (5500'/1680m) and start walking or skiing.

Ymir Mountain ("why-mur") is a popular day trip all year for Nelson and area residents. There are many routes and ski descents (including straight down the north face from the summit for those with strong bowel control).

On a beautiful sunny day I found myself without partner or early start, so off to Ymir the dog and I went. The recent hot spell had done its job, and there was no snow at lodge level, but patchy snow started soon after crossing the creek towards the summit chair. We ascended up the Motherlode ski run about two-thirds of the way and then followed the direct treed rib to the main ridgeline coming west from Ymir. The snow depth quickly increased as we climbed and by ridgeline was around 1.5m. From here we mostly followed the ridge (bypassing the major bump on the south side) to the notch below the main summit pyramid. The snow was generally pretty good, except rather soft and undependable on the pure southern exposures. The first half of the final slope was harder than it looked - moderate snow and class 3 rock (Kumo performed a magnificent back flip with half twist from a failed dyno move landing in the snow moat at the bottom of the offending rock step), but soon laid back to a simple snow plod to summit.

After lounging on the summit for an hour, we continued along down the blocky and snow free north ridge. Where it became a bit more challenging, we traversed a snow slope on the east side (40 degrees?) to the ridge near the low...

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