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Meager Hotsprings - Up the Creek Without a Paddle Again
Timestamp Free: 2020.08.09 - 00:19:32
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Lillooet Icefield
  (2 days)     Elevation Gain: 120m
Participants: Fred Touche (solo)
Difficulty: 2: River and creek crossings. Traveling along steep, loose riverbanks.
Exploring the lower Meager Valley on foot. A botched canoe crossing lead to an eventual helicopter rescue.
The purpose of this trip was to check out the devastation caused by the massive landslide of August 6, 2010 that toppled the Meager Rabbit Ears, gouged out the whole length of Capricorn Creek, and covered the whole lower portion of the Meager Valley with a thick layer of rock and sand. See Mount Meager South Flank Collapse Causes Second Largest Landslide in Canadian History

Because the bridge across the Lillooet River no longer exists, I needed some type of water craft to reach the Meager Valley, which happens to be on the other side of the river. And I did have access to a canoe.

The avalanche debris appears to have just missed the bridge, but it did create a dam across the river just downstream from the bridge. This in turn created an upstream lake lake that swamped the bridge, knocking out two of its three spans. Only the middle span remains in place. In the intervening year, most of the dam has disappeared, but some portion of it remains and there's still a small upstream lake. This lake appears to be one of the few viable places to cross the river.

Canoe Crossing
I hauled the canoe a short stretch to where the former road disappears into the water. I tried to take a picture but the camera was completely dead. It turned out that I had left the battery at home in its charger -- what a bummer -- so I left the camera in the car. I couldn't have anticipated that this would turn out to a be blessing in disguise.

After tying my backpack onto one of the cross members, I pushed off into the lake and started paddling through a patch of standing old growth trees. This was initially fun, but soon degenerated into trying to guide the canoe through branches and around windfalls, just as the current was getting stronger. I was...

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