Sky Pilot, West Ridge Jun 13, 2009 - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
High on the Mountain Top
 
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Default Sky Pilot, West Ridge Jun 13, 2009

Pavel and I did Sky Pilot Mountain yesterday.

Some information from the bivouac web site http://www.bivouac.com/

(3 km N of Mountain Lake). (9 km E of Britannia Beach).
Sky Pilot Mountain is the highest of a tightly knit group of jagged peaks located southeast of Squamish behind the Stawamus Chief. The easiest approach is via Shannon Creek and the easiest summit route the south ridge (Class 2-3).

Insert Access / Route
1. South ridge (1910) B. Darling, H. Dowler, A. Morkill, J. Haggard, Mr. Grubbe . class 3. From the basin SE of Sky Pilot, ascend towards Gunsight Gap, then left up a broad ramp (scree or snow) cutting under S face of Sky Pilot. Climb S ridge to gain W ridge above that route's 4th class slab crux. Climb to the summit ridge (do not traverse ledge below ridge crests shown in Fairley photo) and continue to the base of the prominent gendarme. Deke around the gendarme on the south side and easily up the gully beyond to the summit.
2. West Ridge class 3-4. This route is usually approached from Shannon Creek via the Stadium Glacier. A pink slab low on the route is the crux (class 3-4), with easier climbing higher up (class 2-3). Above the crux slab, this route joins with the South Ridge route from Britannia Creek. Climb over the first gendarme on the right (or traverse left on a grassy ledge). Pass the second gendarme by a ledge on the right.


Some stats of our trip
===================
Summit - 2031m
Elevation gain - 1900m
Round trip time - 14 hours 15 minutes
Ascent time - 7 hours 40 minuts
Snow line - 1300m. It started right after the end of the old bushy road.
Gear - hiking poles, ice -axes, a 60m half rope, one hexnut and couple of slings to build a rappel station

Sky Pilot was on our list for a while. When we saw Sabine's report on Sky Pilot https://www.clubtread.com/sforum/topi...TOPIC_ID=31038 a week ago we decided to give it a try. This report help us a lot, especially time wise. Thanks Sabine.

We parked at the "Stawamus-Indian FSR" gate early morning. Packing my stuff and getting ready I found out that I forgot my helmet at home.[:0] What a bummer. We started walking at 6:50 AM. In one hour and ten minutes we took a water break at the large boulder road block. One more hour and we turned to the old really bushy road. It's so badly overgrown, especially at the end. Where the road ended we lost the trail for a while. There are two gullies at the end of road. We got confused and chose the wrong one. When we realized that we were on the wrong way we bushwhacked back to the place we got lost. Knowing that the trail crosses the gully somewhere at the top we didn't seek for it. We decided to climb the correct gully straight up. We picked the trail again about three quarters on the way up. Eventually we left the trees and arrived at a big basin. We continued up open snow slopes, gained the west ridge. In two and a half hours from the end of the road we were at the base of pink-yellow slab. We left our hiking poles and ice-axe there. The first crux required some some rock climbing skills. We made it, no problem. Then we scramble up heading to the right through the scree. We contoured to the right below the cliffs until we stopped at the place what Dru called the "traverse of doom". That traverse didn't look inviting at all, exposure and loose rook. Soon we found a chimney leading to the top of a sub-summit. From a sub-summit we scrambled down to a gendarme and then further down on the right to the second crux. The second crux required one delicate move to traverse from the first shallow gully to the main gully. This move must require a full concentration from you. It doesn't really matter how easy or difficult you think this move is. If you slip there it's a long fall down. Once we were in the main gully we climbed to the summit in 10 minutes. We summitted at 2:30 PM. It took as 7 hours and 40 minutes (it would be less if we didn't lose the trail). We were so tired, I didn't have even any desire to take any pictures. We took a well deserved rest. I signed the summit register. Then we took a few pictures and headed down. The second crux was right away again. We downclimbed the gully with huge caution and passed the crux back, no problem. Then again scrambling on the ridge. When we reached the fist crux -pink yellow slab, we were really tired. It had been almost 10 hours since we left the car. We had a rope on us. So we decided to rappel down. After the rappel it was a long slog back to car. We were at the car at 9:05PM. What a long but a satisfying trip.

Here are some pictures from our trip. I didn't take many. Most of the pictures were taken by Pavel. Thanks Pavel.

6:40 AM Mamquam FSR, our parking spot
1. "Stawamus-Indian FSR" sign
2. Getting ready


Pavel taking a water break at the large boulder blockade.


Place, where you have to leave the Shannon Creek road to the old overgrown road.
1. An arrow on the road pointing to the old overgrown road
2. The entrance of the old road


Climbing up in the open basin

On the west ridge
Nikolai is approaching the first crux. Co-Pilot is on the back.


Scrambling begins. The first crux, pink - yellow slab

Above the slab
1. Nikolai climbing a chimney leading to a sub -summit.
2. On the summit ridge. View of a prominent gendarme and the summit
3. Pavel looking at the gendarme. We were tired at that point.
4. The second crux. Nikolai climbing the first shallow gully


At the summit
1. Gendarme and the West ridge
2. Ledge mountain.
3. Right to left. Bagpipe, Red, Sheer (blak peak), Ben Lomond
4. Utopia lake, I think
5. Habrich

6. Nikolai signing the summit register
7. Summit register papers
8. Nikolai
9. Pavel
10. Summit group shot


The second crux. Nikolai downclimig the main gully. The bottom of this gully is a huge cliff - a long way down.

Scrambling down on the ridge
1. Nikolai between a Gendarme and a sub -summit.
2. Downclimbing the gully from a sub-summit.

Rappel of the first crux - pink yellow slab

Back on the safe ground.
1. Pavel enjoying the sun
2. Nikolai heading down from the ridge.


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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:37 PM
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That's a mighty fine bit of scrambling there. Definitely would be beyond my comfort level!

-Ryan
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:38 PM
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Well done Nikolai and Pavel. A lot of beautiful pictures.

K
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:40 PM
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Nice one. Looks like that trail could really use some maintenance. Too bad the road continues to be gated.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:50 PM
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Very well laid out TR Nikolai and some nice pictures. Good job on getting this one in the bag. I'm thinking of walking in there some time to have a go at Co-Pilot.

You've got to work on getting Pavel to smile for at least one of the pictures. Both you guys look way to serious.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:05 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by simonc

Very well laid out TR Nikolai and some nice pictures. Good job on getting this one in the bag. I'm thinking of walking in there some time to have a go at Co-Pilot.

You've got to work on getting Pavel to smile for at least one of the pictures. Both you guys look way to serious.
Hey Simon.

We were just tired after of 7 and a half hour acsent.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:17 PM
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Nice one, you guys worked really hard! [^]
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:24 PM
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Well done fellas, and thanks for the report. I'll bet it was nice to finally bag that one!
As it will be for me, after two failed attempts..
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:27 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by simonc
You've got to work on getting Pavel to smile for at least one of the pictures. Both you guys look way too serious.
Well, Simon, you see... in the summit photos I am actually smiling. A lot of Russians - if not most - smile that way... we never show our teeth - I couldn't do that if I tried, which is for the best
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 11:06 PM
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nice job scambling up there, nice area
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 12:16 AM
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"do not throw rocks if someone is climbing"
I'm glad you made it down safe.
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 12:28 AM
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What an awesome report, you guys had your work cut out for you.
Your type of hiking is much more advanced than mine. I like to enjoy it from my (safe) comfy seat . Thanks for sharing!

Habrich looks like a cool peak too.



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post #13 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 12:49 AM
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Very well done. I enjoyed the information and pictures very much.
The climb and your report are excellant.
I was wondering when you guys were going for a big one with all the smaller summits you have done lately I knew it had to be getting in shape and training for something more formable. [8D]
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 12:55 AM
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Good job Nikolai and Pavel
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post #15 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 08:07 AM
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Good going team! Excellent report!

People amaze me with their fearless scrambling. I think the crux would look worse in person then you could show with your camera. I'd only attempt it if someone roped me up[:0]!
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