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Buck Mountain on skis.
Timestamp Free: 2018.01.19 - 22:43:00
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Ashlu-Elaho Divide
  (1 days)     Elevation Gain: 1800m
Difficulty: 4: Moderately long, quite steep and lots of vertical. Challenging but doable as an early winter trip! Much easier in Spring no doubt.
Early winter trip to the Buck Zig-Zag col via the recently hand cleared Ashlu A-7** roads, (recently renamed the Rob Creek Connector.)
For a few years I have been looking to modernise and re-popularise several different approaches into the Ashlu-Elaho Divide. This area seemed to be popular about 10 years ago (as I write this in 2017) but it is less on peoples radar these days. The reason for this I feel is that the roads were rapidly deteriorating, and descriptions of them were slightly vague or out of date. So I set out to amend this.

In the fall I spent several days clearing the roads A-730, A-735 and A-735a. This now provides a safe and weather proofed (although slightly long) approach to the steep south slopes of Buck. [Editors Note: This is now known as the "Rob Creek Trail" in Bivouac] This trail involves a fairly flat section which crosses Wolf Creek twice. Next summer I may attempt to cut a bypass trail close to this creek which will probably cut 30/40 mins off the approach)

We left Whistler at 5am, and were on the trail at the recently closed bridge over Ashlu main (6.8km) at 7am. We started walking from here, and switched to skinning at Rob Creek. It takes a few hours to skin the longish route along the road to the top of the cut block at the end of A-735a. This cut block (and the road A-735a) begins at approx location 49.9463, -123.3797 [photo]IMG_0486.jpg[caption]Leaving the closed Ashlu Bridge at 7am[/photo]

[photo]IMG_0495.jpg[caption]Skinning on A-735[/photo]

[photo]IMG_0505.jpg[caption]Entering the steep but manageable old growth[/photo]

From here another few hours of steep skiing in old growth leads to the tree line, and then its yet another few hours straight up the open south slopes to the Buck/Zig-Zag col. [photo]IMG_3237.JPG[caption]Views over the Squamish river valley[/photo]

Once above tree line the views are great, especially once you reach the ridge...

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