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Clawing the Thin Ice: Ring-Callaghan Ski Traverse
Timestamp Free: 2020.03.31 - 01:37:10
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges
  (2 days)     Elevation Gain: 1600m
Participants: Large VOC Party: Christian Veenstra, Line Veenstra, Doris Leong, Roland Burton, Piotr, Jordan Best,
Difficulty: 3: Routefinding, ascending steep slope on glacier
A traverse starting at Callaghan Lake, crossing glaciers to Mount Callaghan, descending through Ring Mountain and finishing on logging roads up the Squamish valley (can be done in either direction)
I love frozen lakes. The thin ice covering them is like a call to arms. I feel drawn to the ice, to test it, walk on it, throw sticks and rocks at it, and am always surprised to see them bounce off the ice instead of making a splash in the water. Maybe this has something to do with growing up in the Middle East, where ice exists strictly in the freezer. My wonder at ice formations extends of course to the biggest pieces of ice we are likely to bump into, glaciers. Getting close to glaciers and traveling across them is still a novelty to me. This trip took us across a spectacular glacier, which was our home for one night, and back down the other side.

Piotr Forysinski had planned this "intermediate friendly" trip, a two day traverse from the Callaghan cross-country area to the Squamish Valley near Ring Mountain. I drove up to Callaghan (with Christian and Line Veenstra, Doris Leong and Roland Burton), and Piotr drove up the other side, and we planned to swap cars. Jordan Best's group also joined us, driving in and out the same way. We all met up in Squamish, but had to wait for one person, an experienced mountaineer, who didn't wake up in time. After switching keys and wishing each other good luck, we set off in our separate directions.

When we turned on to the road to Callaghan I mentioned that I had seen a few bears on that road a few weeks before. Sure enough, a few minutes later we came across a bear on the side of the road, and a group of people who were busy taking photos with a huge lens from across the road, while we stopped right beside the bear, who was oblivious to all this. Later we passed another bear and cub, and one more bear. Perhaps carrying bear spray would have been a good idea. We managed to drive directly to snowline with no trouble.


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