Mount Benson, a Snowy Day

–submitted by Bil Derby

On a foggy damp Sunday morning, the six of us met at the Witchcraft Trail Head, made introductions, tidied up the necessary paperwork, and offered our hopes to the weather gods before getting underway at 08:10.  Veering right away from the “tourist route” at the first trail junction we climbed upwards to cross McGarrigle Creek at 460 meters, more or less, to follow the Outer Route.  A brisk uphill from there led us to a brief stop at the first bluffy viewpoint just above the climbing wall. From here on the trail gets a bit bushy and there may have been a word or two about the use of hiking partners as dewatering tools for the salal.

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A leg stretcher: Copley Ridge

— submitted by Matthew Lettington

We had high hopes for the day, but not all plans come to fruition. Canoe Peak was a lofty goal for any day, but we were adding to the challenge by attempting a winter ascent. On our way through Sutton Pass (230 m) snow was falling fast and accumulating so fast that vehicle tracks were being obscured within minutes and within 15 minutes there was an inch of fresh snow on the road.

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Katzenjammer 2018- Arrowsmith’s Judge

–report by Wayne Mills
— photographs by John Young

Mount Arrowsmith (Judge’s-Route) was stunning, on January 1st. The largest mountain on southern Vancouver Island, definitely one for the more experienced hikers. It took us 6.5hrs at a steady pace, from dusk till dawn, steep and slippery, heart rate raiser and old injury breaker (knees/lower back). Snowshoes are not required. Crampons, poles, and axe are definitely required.

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Karzenjammer Lite/The Hordelski Mt Benson

–submitted by Ken Warren

We weren’t the first to set out to hike Benson from Witchcraft Lake, but close to it. Eight of us went on tthis new year’s expedition for various reasons, but in part it was to remember our friend and club member Mike Hordelski who died hiking Benson in 2017. Mike loved Mt Benson and hiked it many times by many routes.

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Over Robert’s Roost to Westwood Ridges

-submitted by Adrian Houle,

We passed through Morrell Sanctuary, under the power lines, up the trails and past the old DND road to the top of Roberts roost. We then follow a trail out the back side of Roberts roost onto some old logging roads that lead through a swampy valley and traced the Westwood cliffs until they lower to a hill and allowed us up onto the ridges. From there we follow the ridges back to a different part of the same trail system we started on, and back to the sanctuary.

All 5 participants survived the trip and in good spirits.

CPR Trail to Mt Cokely

–submitted by Mary Hof

It was a great day to spend with Carol and Ellen (guest) on this hike July 8th from Cameron Lake to Mt Cokely.

The pace was great and the views spectacular. We made it up in 3.5 hours, very little snow which actually made it harder as rocks were slippery, and the old ski hill had lots of that loose scree. The trail was in great shape and we took our time coming back talking with those going up, and spending some time at the creek. Just short of 8 hours, 20k and 1400m elevation gain.