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Mount Shepherd: the Long Way
Timestamp Free: 2017.11.22 - 02:38:40
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges
  (1 days)
Participants: Lucas Earl, Doug Hopwood No trail, but route finding is easy through the open forest. Watch for bluffs.
Kayak then hike up the west side of Texada Island to the summit of Mount Shepherd
Weather: Overcast to mostly sunny in the lowlands, with hanging clouds over the mountains. Light winds while on the water.

Mount Shepherd is the highest point in the central and southern Gulf Islands, conveniently located right in the middle of the Strait of Georgia. As a result, the peak offers great 360 views, despite being only 887 m. While it is a relatively easy ascent from the east, the west side drops steeply into Sabine Channel and offers a greater challenge for a day trip.

As luck would have it, I was on Lasqueti Island during the month of August and was in the position to climb Mount Shepherd "the long way". My Uncle had experience with the summit, as he had spent significant time in the area helping create the South Texada Provincial Park in the 1990s. While I had visions of grandeur for such a feat, it turns out that, in my Uncle's words, "The government gave me a bunch of hectares and I got to draw a box on a map" (I might be paraphrasing).

Anyway, we decided to take a trip to the "Doug Hopwood Provincial Park" to climb Mount Shepherd. From Lasqueti it is actually a bit of a biathlon, as you have to take a boat across to the west side of Texada before hiking up. So we set out from Heron Bay (just east of Tucker Bay on the north side of Lasqueti) in my Uncle's double kayak at 8:30 AM.

Fortunately, it was fairly calm, and we were able to kayak between Jervis and Paul Islands (also provincial park lands) and across Sabine Channel to Texada. While the entire west side of the island is pretty steep, there is a good spot to land a kayak at a place called "the Spit" (see waypoints), which is a small beach inside South Texada Park. If you are into camping, there is also a nice grassy spot above high tide in the same location....

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