H’Kusam Mountain

–Submitted by Matthew Lettington
Read the full report on his blog, Boring Art, Boring Life

I’m the classic weekend warrior. I only have one day a week to get out and make mountaineering magic happen. Though there is a ridiculous number of opportunities on Vancouver Island for outdoor adventure, Phil and I are exhausting the climbs that are possible to do as day hikes.

H'kusam Mountain via Stow Creak Trail
Phil walking in the krumholtz on our way back from the summit. 

Already we are pushing far up-island. Many of our Sunday adventures require more than five hours of driving, including early 5 am departures from Nanaimo. The Prince of Whales Range is proving to be a great location for new hikes. On Sunday, October 4th, Phil hosted an Island Mountain Ramblers event, a hike up H’kusam Mountain. Four of us met and hiked this objective, and three of us made the summit!

H'Kusam Mountain Stow Creek Trail Map
H’Kusam Mountain via Stow Creek Trail Map

Total Horizontal Distance: 11.1 km

Starting Elevation: 700 m

Maximum Elevation: 1664 m
Elevation Gain: 1028 m

Time: 7 hours

There are several trails used to access this peak. Two of them form a portion of the trail used for the H’kusam Climb, an annual trail-running event hosted out of Seyward. We used the Stowe Creek Trail, accessed off the Stowe Creek Main Line. Driving north about 60 kilometres from Campbell River, turn right off the highway onto Timber Road and take the left fork. The Stowe Creek Main Line follows the route used for the H’kusam Climb and as such, some maps have the road marked as a trail. It’s definitely a road, but only a vehicle with high clearance and 4WD will be able to negotiate the crossditches and creek crossing to make it to the start of the trail. I left my Outback near the highway and hopped into Phil’s Jeep Liberty. The larger vehicle made it to the trailhead at 700 metres of elevation with little challenge…

Read the full report on his blog, Boring Art, Boring Life

Leave a Reply