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The Great Garibaldi Park Traverse - Part 1
Timestamp Free: 2019.09.18 - 13:50:45
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Garibaldi Ranges
Participants: Peter Alig, Klaus Haring
Difficulty: 4: Very strenuous backpack with extensive glacier travel, moderately difficult rock climbing and bushwhacking.
A traverse from Wedgemount to Alouette Lake climbing some of the highest peaks along the way.
35 years ago I did a long traverse of Garibaldi Park. The trip came into being when my Swiss climbing partner wanted to do a 2 week long hike before returning to the old country, this being the most time I could get off work. We had long been fascinated with the remote Misty Icefields, such large glaciers on so low mountains were still a novelty to us. In the Alps glaciers are found only on 3000 and 4000m peaks. Since we knew that approach would be long and difficult from any direction we felt we could best visit the area on a traverse. Afterwards I wrote a diary that soon got lost. But I remember the trip as if it happened only yesterday. Of course I must have forgotten a lot, after all, writing the diary was an attempt to put an overwhelming adventure into a manageable package. Here are some details. I had marked our route and campsites on my maps, so I can reliably reconstruct most of it.
Two friends drove us to the Wedgemount Lake trailhead and hiked with us to the hut. They were not very experienced climbers and were not able to help us with our loads, but it was still the easiest backpack of the trip.
Roger and Jill accompany us to the Armchair Glacier and wait there while we climb Weart, part of the plan being to climb all the highest peaks along the way. In the afternoon they hike back into the valley, promising to meet us at Gold Creek in 2 weeks.
We have an early start and put on our crampons for a few 100m of bare ice on the lower Wedgemount Glacier which in those days still terminated in the lake with a spectacular ice cliff. We could have done without the crampons and never used them again on the whole trip. After going south of Parkhurst Mountain and around the westside of Wedge we leave our packs...
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