Island Mountain Ramblers

Hiking/ Climbing / Mountaineering / Exploring Vancouver Island since 1958

Category: Nanaimo Regional District (Page 2 of 3)

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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Mount Gemini – the twin peak

–submitted by Matthew Lettington. Read the full report on his blog

I did the math: I’m approaching the 100th peak in my Island Alpine Quest. Although most peaks on Vancouver Island have some level of difficulty associated with their approach, some are even more difficult to get to, and Gemini Mountain falls into this category. It’s tucked deep in behind Nanaimo, past Third Lake and south of Fourth Lake. Although there is a good-quality gravel road that drives up to 1200 metres, and the peak would be a lovely short summer hike, the trick is getting access to the road!

gemini mountain, hiking near nanaimo, matthew lettington, island mountain ramblers

Gemini Mountain Map and GPS Route

 

 

Total Distance: 5.4 km
Starting Elevation:  1218 m
Maximum Elevation: 1524 m
Elevation Gain: 600 m
Total Time:

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A girls hike up Mt. Horne

–submitted by Stefanie Bates

We had a fun all ladies adventure up Mt. Horne on Oct 30th. It was not much of a day for views but the company was amazing and we had lots of laughs.
We went in at Cathedral grove before turning up the steep terrain as we got to know each other. One group member (Julie) had never hiked up a mountain so it was pretty exciting for her as well as us. She tackled the whole thing like a champ.
We never did see much as far as views but then again it did not matter. This was more about the journey than the destination.
After a quick lunch at the top we made our way down… Some on their bottoms. A good time all around.

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Westwood Ridges

–submitted by Matthew Lettington

–photographs submitted by Sharon Hagen

I was awoken at 6 am by the sound of my cellphone –ding, an incoming email. I lay in bed a while longer, staring at the ceiling. I was listening for the sound of rain. The South Island was in the midst of a sever weather warning but I was planning on hiking regardless of the weather. As I listened, I could hear droves of rain pummeling the roof and periodically waft against my bedroom window.

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Morrell Sanctuary along Benson Ridge to Witchcraft Lake

–submitted by Mary Hof

Hike from Morrell Sanctuary to Roberts’ Roost and along the South Ridge to the summit of Mt Benson and down the North Ridge to Witchcraft Lake. October 2, 2016.

This was my first hike I led as a Rambler, for over 20 years I have been leading hikes for the Outdoor Club of Victoria, and the Cowichan hikers. I joined the Ramblers earlier this year as I wanted more variety and some tougher hikes.
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Night Hike up Arrowsmith to watch the Persied Meteors

–Submitted by Beth Avis

4 of us set out Friday afternoon on our quest to watch the meteors from the summit of Mt. Arrowsmith. 2 other fellow ramblers were also planning to rally at the top with via the West Ridge. We chose the Judges Route.
After leaving a little later than expected, we decided to stop on the mountainside, about 3/4 of the way up on a good rock ledge. That became our camp for the night. I was able to connect with Clarke and co, who were coming up the other side, and they too decided not to summit as well. But all in all we got to see lots of meteors, a beautiful sunset and had a blast doing it!
We were back down by 830am for breakfast. It was a fun trip and look forward to next years shower!

awesome summer hiking aug 2016 117

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Rappel Workshop 3

The day may have threatened rain, but we had only light winds and a pleasant glow for our rappel workshop.

The four of us worked quickly to learn the basics of rappelling. Before long, we were rappelling down the height of the bluffs at Pipers Lagoon.
Next to the mountains!

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