–submitted by Christine Rivers
The Forbidden Plateau Traverse hike was an all women’s hike, with the Alpine Club of Vancouver Island and the Island Mountain Ramblers. We had a lot of interest and a number of cancellations at the last minute so there were only 8 people on the hike.
We camped at Kwai Lake the first night. Most of us took a quick trip out to Cruikshank canyon after we set up camp. We followed the trail for the traverse through Murray Meadows, past Panther lake, a quick swim in Johnson lake, a beautiful walk through MacKenzie meadows with grasses and flowers up to our waists, a side trip to the viewpoint where the Indianhead mountain trail starts, and finally up to Drabble Lakes.
It was misty and almost raining when we found small areas to crowd our 6 tents in to. The mist lifted in the evening and 3 brave people went for a swim. In the morning, 2 people braved the swim in Drabble lake. We continued on following the well trodden trail. There is a significant uphill section to the trail that goes on for quite a long time. When we finally came out to where the trail divides to go up to Mt. Becher, three of us hid our packs while the others waited and we went up to the top of Mt. Becher. We were rewarded with glorious views.
We hiked out down the very wide trail, and down the old ski hill of Forbidden Plateau to the van that came to pick us up. Some of the hikers were first time backpackers and they did very well. This hike can be done in one day, but we took our time to enjoy all of the beautiful places along the way and to camp out for two nights.