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Travis

Welch Peak

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Looking at heading up to Welch this weekend (S Ridge), anyone been up there lately?

 

Interested to know if the gate on Foley Lake Rd is open and how high the snow is in the Cheam range at the moment.

 

Thanks

 

[ 06-06-2002, 01:44 PM: Message edited by: Travis ]

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....looking out the window, the snow on north facing slopes is at about 1000m.

 

Foley Creek road has a landslide below Airplane you will need 4x4 to get past.

 

The road up to Williamson Lake is probably not gated but probably has snow before the top of the road.

 

Looking out my window looks like still some significant snow patches on the S ridge of Welch so be prepared for same and remember the former BCMC hut at the lake was wiped out by a spring avalanche in 1974...

 

Glissade down the Welch Foley gully probably in good shape right now.

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It would be a bush thrash getting into the gully and probably some slush and rock at the top. But I would imagine that some (not all) people could climb it. I dont know you so have no idea of your skill set. i will say that at this time of year there are probably funner routes to do on the mountain.

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Fair enough,

The presence of slush on top would ruin it for me. (no fun) I'm going to be checking out this area for the first time so I'm interested to know: what are these 'funner' routes you speak of?

 

The S Ridge seems like it would be better as a summer solo objective than a spring climb. The Southern aspects on supposedly loose rock don't sound good either.

 

Thanks again

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South ridge is a great scramble when dry. Right now it might be more challenging, you would possibly need ice axe and maybe crampons, also maybe a rope and a few pins or nuts or hexes? Cause you would probably want to 4th-class some sections.It usually dries out completely by first week of july or thereabouts. You can see the ridge from Chilliwack so check conditions before you get to the valley from the Tim Hortons parking lot.

 

Right now I would say do the SE face. You climb part way up the W-F gully then fork left and climb on mostly snow right up to below the summit Pyramid, parallelling but below the east ridge on the S face on a big snow band.

 

If you have a burning desire to do a west side route, the west face is probably a better choice. You finish up between the southern false peak and then up s ridge to summit. it goes up a gully sort of, so probably more snow than direct W face.

 

The advantage of Williamson Lake side of things is that you cando Welch and Foley both if you are fast whereas coming up friom the west you probably have to go back down that way too, although I imagine you could maybe do welch and still from the west?

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Dru, o' wise marmot of things n. of the border,

 

How would you rate the looseness of the s. ridge in the choss scale? Bad like Fisher Peak or better than a drinking Jenga game? Just have heard that the Cheam Range is notorious for bad rock.

 

Thanks

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s ridge is pretty solid as things go. figure on about like Shuksan summit pyramid. there is some dirt, small trees and heather for added value.

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Okay so here's the deal.

 

We headed up Saturday, the road is drivable all the way to the parking area (4x4). However, a small slide brought down a big stump about 10 minutes walk from the end of the road; this will stop you. The snow doesn't start 'til the parking area and will probably be higher even now. The snow conditions were not bad with a few inches of soft over fairly solid neve. No problem kicking steps with plastics. No need for snowshoes.

 

As for the attempt...

We were in really thick cloud once we hit the clearing and ended up following some bogus flagging tape into the trees. We followed a trail in but quickly lost it and just beat it up the hill hoping to see something from treeline. Unfortunately we hit a huge cliff, this is the wrong way.

 

After scrambling up a ways, then roping up and climbing a pitch we were able to look back above the trees. At this point it was obvious that we were screwed, since the way above was a big steep loose rock climb and our intended route was way to our left. We rapped once, downclimbed and plunge stepped down back to the point where we'd entered the trees. By then, the sky had cleared and we could see where we'd gone wrong and took the time to locate the right trail since it was too late to attempt a climb. (Pink flagging tape, left of the stand of trees)

 

We'd brought a light climging rope, some rock gear and crampons. The crampons were not necessary at but I'd pack them up if I were going again before it melts out. We did use the rope and gear, including one KB, but then again we were off-route. Conditions are such that we would have been 4th classing some of the route for sure.

 

Write it off to a day of exploration and conditioning in the mountains.

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Yup, the headwall below the lake, climbers right.

 

We were up there Saturday, didn't see any other vehicles on that road. From what I heard, the weather in vancouver and squamish was a lot better than where we were. It was showering and until about noon we were in thick cloud, at least above 1200m.

 

The cliff itself is pretty grungy and loose, but I wouldn't describe the vegitation as amazing. The thrash up to the lake at The Old Settler was much worse; at least in August. Above the trees, the thing I remember about the actual rock was not the vegitation, although there was plenty. There was a thin layer of slushy snow clinging to much of the moss and we were having to dig for holds. I was glad to see a good selection rap trees once we'd decided to bail. There were more big trees above us so we could have gone higher without feeling at all committed, but frankly the climbing sucked. In any event, we were a good rope-length above the forest when we descended.

 

[ 06-10-2002, 01:12 PM: Message edited by: Travis ]

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Yeah we got stormed on in the Wack all day long Saturday. At least I got to visit the secret limestone Sporto cliff.

 

I got cliffed out one time in November exactly same spot as you except we were climbers left (west) of the creek.

 

Looks like the snow is melting fast right now! 26C in Chilliwack.

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So if I read you right you were cliffed out on the headwall below the lake? That is some amazing vegetation on those cliffs.

 

You were up there Saturday?

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Limestone sporto cliff eh? How about basalt? Talked to a guy at Murrin Sunday who just climbed the Black Dyke...Free. Free at last, bolted all the way with the possibility of aiding the 5.12 and 5.13 pitches on bolts.

 

Now that's a sport climb!

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I wonder if it will be chopped?

 

I met that dude too. Did he link it all up in one push is the next question though?

 

Free at last with bolted controversey. [geek]

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The guy I talked to said he had to aid the 5.13 pitch. I don't know if anyone's linked the whole route yet.

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S ridge now completely snow free as seen from Sardis.

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