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Tszil Crossover Attempt- When should one turn back?
Timestamp Free: 2017.11.20 - 06:18:47
Ranges: North America Ranges / Pacific Cordillera Range / Coast Mountains / Pacific Ranges / Lillooet Ranges / Joffre Group
Participants: Betsy Waddington, Robin Tivy, Steve Grant, Dave Williams, Matt
Difficulty: 3: Lower creek was difficult bushwacking through deadfall in low snow. Upper slopes were firm, but lots of evidence of recent avalanches.
An incredible thrash in lower deadfall
The Tszil Crossover trip goes up the creek south of Tszil and Taylor peaks and then over the Tszil-Slalok col and down to Joffre Lakes. In my trip report last week, I reported the tremendous winds and wind slab. See Hanging Lake to Beverly Creek via Spectrum Pass. And since then, there had been considerable snow on top of the same rain crust, so for this weekend we knew that conditions would be dangerous. However Dave was keen to get out on a weekend trip and do at least something. Both he and I had done the Tszil Crossover trip years ago so we had some idea of the terrain. Dave remembered there was lots of micro terrain which gave you options to avoid triggering something, but in my memory I just remembered it was steep enough to be considering avalanche safety. Anyway I knew Dave and the others well enough to be confident we would only complete the trip if it looked safe when we got there.
We met at the St David's church at 7:15, and the 5 of us took two cars, so we could do the car shuttle. When we got to Whistler, there was the now typical enormous traffic jam which cut our speed to 5 km/hour for half an hour. Finally we cleared Whistler and regrouped at the Petrocan in Pemberton, and headed up the Duffey Lake road. We couldn't figure out exactly where to start, but saw a new snow covered road going up just south of what I will call "Taylor Creek". Taylor creek is the one that comes down from the bowl northwest of Taylor peak. The Taylor spur is just south of that creek. We knew nothing about that spur, although in hindsight, it is on the "t4" display on Bivouac, and also barely visible on the "satellite view. Bad research is quite common, because when we plan trips, the destination is often changed several times and only decided at the last minute...
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