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Pemberton Icecap Traverse - Overseer Mtn to Callaghan Lake
Timestamp Free: 2019.12.10 - 07:02:32
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges
Participants: Doug Brown, Bob St John, Liz Hardwick, Sandra McGuinness
Difficulty: 3: Easy glacier terrain, some crevassed areas but easily negotiated, possibility for storms and white out conditions, exit via Callaghan can be unpleasant when the trail is rutted and frozen from snowmobiles.
A variation on the classic Pemberton Icefield traverse from Overseer Mountain in the north to Callaghan Lake in the south via Longspur Peak.
Not Quite The Day We Expected:
After waiting out a few days of bad weather in Vancouver, Dale Douglas of Tyax Air Service dropped us off on the unnamed glacier between Mounts Breshnef and Madhorse at the north end of the Pemberton Icefield. Once we got over the wonder of our surroundings, we built the first snow wall of many, set up the tent, ate lunch, and loaded up day packs. A gentle downhill run of about 200 metres brought us to the base of the glacier that leads up the north side of Overseer Mountain, where we turned west and skied up to the col between Spidery Peak and Overseer Mountain. We followed the north glacier up until we were about 10 metres below the summit of Overseer, where we left our skis and kicked steps up hard snow to the summit, finding the ubiquitous heli-ski stake.
Once on the summit, Bob lounged about enjoying the incredible Coast Range vista, Doug nibbled away at various foodstuffs, and I tried to get the other three interested in doing another peak, while Liz categorized us according to a four point typology used by NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School in the US) who she guides for during the summer months. Although Liz was too polite to say, I was immediately slotted into the "pushy" category, while Bob fell into the dubious "wishy-washy" group, and Doug, who refused to answer the two critical questions, remained an enigma.
The descent down the north side of Overseer Mountain was surprisingly good in 25 cm of new dry snow that only became wet and mushy much lower down. We got back to camp around 6.00 pm and began the three hour process of melting snow for cooking and drinking.
Bob had kindly supplied the four of us with crazy carpet sleds complete with his un-patented "jerk-o-matic"...
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