Island Mountain Ramblers

Hiking/ Climbing / Mountaineering / Exploring Vancouver Island since 1958

Category: Nanaimo Regional District (Page 2 of 3)

Mount Benson : The Outer Route

submitted by Mary Hof

Sunday June 11, 7 hikers signed up for Mt. Benson car shuttle doing the Outer route. After many emails making sure the car shuttle would work and we have enough cars, so no one had to wait, it worked out 100%.

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Mt Horne, Mt Westly and Westley Ridge traverse

-submitted by Mary Hoff

7 hikers met and make the car shuttle for Mt Horne, Mt Westley and the ridge. It was a very hot day views were awesome. Hike took 7.5 hours we did follow the quad trail in places. I kept reminding people to drink we had couple people that ended up with leg cramps but mustard seems to help. I am going to carry some now, LOL

Great group and I enjoyed leading.

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Wesley Ridge Traverse, 04-29-17 (An Island Mountain Ramblers’ Outing)

–submitted by John Young

The forecast for the day was not promising – showers starting in the late morning with rain moving in in the early afternoon. Highs of about 10 degrees, and since we were hiking up to about 900 meters above sea level, we expected to see some snow. And we weren’t disappointed! Although, the rain never materialized, and we did have some wonderful views. Overall, another wonderful hike on Vancouver Island.

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Workshop: learn to Rappel

–submitted by Matthew Lettington
–photographs by Shanon Tagesth

Four Island Mountain Ramblers met in the parking lot at Pipers Lagoon. Although the early week was raining, Thursday brought an unexpected dry spell, complete with sunshine!

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Newcastle Island Hike – April 22, 2017

–submitted by Sherry Durnford

We caught the first ferry of the day at 10 am to Newcastle Island, entertained by tales of Captain Hans.  We knew, thanks to Peter’s meteorological research that rain was about to beset us but it had held off so far.   Very casual, we had lots of stops to admire views and breathe in the salt air.  Small wildflowers abounded and low tide conditions revealed many sandstone formations.  After a brief snack break circumnavigation of the island continued…then circumnavigation of Maillard Lake, then lunch break overlooking the float plane base.  Ah, the postponed rainfall started and left us scrambling for our waterproof gear.  After lunch, we visited the sandstone quarry and enjoyed reading the great historical signage in the quarry.  Then, back to the ferry for a 2:30 sailing back to Nanaimo.   Wet but not cold, we trotted back to our cars, happy to have had a leisurely stroll on Newcastle!

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Triple Feature, Mines, waterfalls, ridges

–submitted by Phil Dol

Eight hikers showed up on an overcast day to wander through the forest in Ladysmith. Our hike started from the gate at the end of Oyster Sto’Lo road just outside Ladysmith around 9:30am. The hike along Camus Ridge was spectacular, once we dropped down the ridge and through the alder slash we came upon an area of freshly cut timber alongside the road. We continued along the logging road until we reached the trail up to Thistle Mine.There were a considerable number of trees that had fallen across the path up to the mine which made for a few trail detours.

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Westwood Ridges 1&2

–submitted by Mike Hordleski

Well, the weather cooperated, rain and snow didn’t materialize. After a short scenic walk past the lake and crossing the hydro corridor, we made our way to the 1st Ridge, but not without a brief stop at the Memorial Picnic Shelter and Remembrance Garden.

First Ridge is easily reached under an hour affording a brief snack break and photo op’s. The trail to 2nd Ridge is more variable with its ups and downs and a nice steepish scrambly bit before we top the ridge which, honestly, has a sweeping view to include Mt. Benson, Roberts Roost, and to the South Ladysmith Inlet.
After lunch, downhill all the way, exit under the power lines with a stopover in Morrell Nature Sanctuary, and a not to be missed summit of the Rocky Knoll–good elevation gain here. And back to the cars.

Took longer than expected–4 hours, which I put down to the easy unhurried pace we adopted. Anyways, smiles all around at its conclusion.

Katzenjammer Light

–submitted by Ken Warren

New Years morning was cold, breezy and clearing when four Ramblers set out in the snow from Witchcraft Lake to Mt Benson. There was one truck in the parking lot before us and a single hiker ahead of us.  Trail conditions were fair with around 6cm of fresh snow softening up the ice slick of the well used track. We made good time to the halfway point with a short off trail ramble to mix things up.

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Marmot Mountain

— Submitted by Matthew Lettington, read the report on his blog

As I write this, I’m drinking a hot chocolate to warm my belly and ease the dull ache of dissatisfaction that’s buzzing in the back of my head. Today, we took a shot at Mount Marmot. Unfortunately, the steep slopes and powdery snow proved too much for the short time we had.

It was already 6:00 am when the fourteen of us met at Harewood Mall. By the time we drove the long road to Nanaimo Lakes, the gates were open; since there was no attendant, we were able to drive right through. Our destination is deep in the heart of the Sadie Creek Valley, along a road familiar to me. We tried to climb this route last winter, but at that time a creek was flowing so fast that we couldn’t hop over it. Today, we discovered active logging in the area, and a new bridge constructed across that creek. With the new bridge, we were able to drive farther into the valley, making the hike several kilometres shorter.

Marmot Mountain Map and GPS Route

Marmot Mountain Map and GPS Route


Total Distance: 7.5 km
Starting Elevation: 419 m
Maximum Elevation: 1209 m
Total Elevation Gain: 786 m
Total Time: 6h 45 m



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Gemini Mountain Double Peaks

–submitted by Phil Jackson

In the early mornign, 15 Nanaimo hikers met at Harewood Mall Starbucks, under threatening skies and proceeded to Nanaimo Lakes on our way to hike up Gemini Mountain. Hitting the trail after 9am we proceeded through old growth forest and within 45minutes summited the first summit under rainy skies.

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