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Wedgemount Lake and Mount Cook in July
Timestamp Free: 2020.08.11 - 20:33:30
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Garibaldi Ranges
  (2 days)     Elevation Gain: 1498m
Participants: Benoit Landry
Difficulty: 3: Strenuous hike up to Wedgemount Lake with an overnight pack and tent, 2000 meters of elevation gain from the parking to the summit of Mount Cook.
Solo overnight hike to Wedgemount Lake, and a hike/scramble up Mount Cook the next day.
My trip to Wedgemount Lake is what made me discover the majesty of the Coast Mountains. After moving to Vancouver I had spent most of my time biking on the North Shore, until I looked down on Whistler village from 2 kilometers above.

It came to be that on the week-end of july 23rd, I decided to undertake the biggest climb of my short hiking history: from the base of the valley in Whistler, I would hike over 2000 meters up to attempt to stand atop mount Weart. During my move to Vancouver from Ottawa, I had set some personal height gain records in the rockies, but I was obviously not prepared for the punishing ascent that the wedgemount group would deliver. Wanting to up the ante, I set out from Vancouver on the 23rd around 10 and was at the parking lot around 1. I drove as far as possible with my 2wd compact, only to find that the road got very rough higher up. I stopped at 660 meters, parked, strapped my pack and headed up.

Progress was quick through the trees, for the first hour. As I slowed down, time seemed to slow simultaneously. The forested section of the trail seemed unending: switchback after switchback, poor GPS coverage and a pack that seemed to be getting heavier by the minute.

Finally, after 2.5 hours I caught a glimpse of the slopes of Cook and Rethel. Somehow the sight made me feel as if I hadn't climbed at all: both peaks were still so high above me and I had the impression of being on a treadmill. I also read an elevation of 1450 meters. Ignoring this discouraging fact, I continued to treeline, where the spectacular vista unfolding behind reminded me of why I was here. I eagerly climbed on towards the headwall below the lake and painfully made my way to its crest.

I was finally there! Wedgemount Lake. Not quite the...

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