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Search for the elusive Class 2 Route on James Turner
Timestamp Free: 2020.07.12 - 08:40:57
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Garibaldi Ranges
  (4 days)     Elevation Gain: 2600m
Participants: Lisa Baile, Klaus Haring
Difficulty: 3: Glacier travel, rugged hiking, the summit of JT is likely class 5
A loop hike around Wedge Mountain with side trip to James Turner. [The party did not find anything close to a class two route]
Editors Note: The title of this report refers to a short class 2 gully mentioned in a Soaked to the Bone on Mount James Turner. However, the overall route to get to that gully involved difficult glacier travel class 4.

The first time I planned to climb James Turner was as a side trip from our trip titled The Great Garibaldi Park Traverse - Part 1, but when we couldn't find a campsite in the bush and swamp around Billy Goat Lake and had to bushwhack a couple km further to below the Shudder Glacier it seemed too far away. A cloudy morning discouraged us further and we decided to save the "Rest Day" for later and a good thing, we needed it badly to complete our grueling trek on schedule.

The 2nd time was as a ski tour. I skied through the Blackcomb Decker col, down upper Wedge Creek to Wedge Pass and camped at Billy Goat Lake. One advantage of a ski trip is you can set up your tent almost anywhere on the snow where bush and swamp might make it impossible in summer. The next morning I headed up the valley to James Turner. When I rounded the south ridge I found a very steep snow slope, too steep to climb on skis leading to the summit. There were a few rocks poking out. Too few to use as stepping stones and too many as not to pinball in case of a slip. I climbed to the first rock. It looked too dangerous without iceax and crampons. The snow was too hard to kick secure steps and a dull overcast filtered any warmth from the sun and gave no hope of it softening up soon.

In the afternoon I moved my camp to the flats below the Decker Glacier and climbed The Spearhead from the south as a consolation price. I remember one strange incident from that last night. I was woken by the sound of footsteps breaking through crusty snow. I could see nothing in...

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