Price Creek Trail, Strathcona Park - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: nanaimo, BC, Canada.
Posts: 117
Default Price Creek Trail, Strathcona Park

Two of us decided to hike the Price Creek Trail in Strathcona Park this past weekend with an eye to making an attempt on Mt.
Septimus (our second attempt). Price Creek is a trail that is no longer maintained by Parks and that is a real shame. It is a nice trail that takes you through some beautiful old growth forest and the elevation gains are minimal. There are a good number of blowdowns that need to be climbed over, crawled under, or navigated around due to lack of maintenance.
The trail starts off nice and level through a logged off area and we saw 4 bears in the first 20 minutes.

After a couple of kilometers, we left the logged off area and got into the nice forest.

The goal of the first leg of our journey was the Cream Lake Junction, where we would assess the snow situation. We hit full coverage snow at about 600 meters, but the post holing wasn't bad, unless you stepped right beside a buried log. Snow depth at the Cream Lake Junction was about 6 - 8 feet, elevation just over 700 meters.

We dropped our packs here and continued upstream until we could see the avalanche chute that forms the top part of the route up to Cream Lake. It was heavily overhung with cornices. We decided to camp at the Junction and explore further up
Price Creek towards Green Lake, which feeds Price Creek.
This whole area has seen a lot of avalanche activity... some really big ones. We picked our way up to Green Lake, avoiding the debris zones, then climbed the ridge above the lake towards Mt. Septimus.
Green Lake

The Misthorns and Mt. Rousseau

The Golden Hinde

Mt Septimus...

Looking back down to Green Lake

We didn't feel good about going any further... we were sinking knee deep in the snow, and the ridge up to Septimus is steeper than anything we had been on. So... we called it a day and headed back to camp, packed up, and hiked out.
A lot of walking in 2 days, but the weather was good, and the views up in the mountains were even better.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 07:28 PM
Off the Beaten Path
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Chilliwack, BC, Canada.
Posts: 948

Love the scenery!
Looks like you had a good trip...thanks for sharing.
Septimus looks like a fun place to explore.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 08:05 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Forest Gnome Cabin, , Canada.
Interest: Outdoor stuff...especially scrambling,trailrunning,mountain biking,kayaking,and hiking, and of course photography
Posts: 13,876

Great stuff, so much to see in Strathcona!
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 08:34 PM
Summit Master
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Powell River, bc, Canada.
Interest: hiking,swimming,anything on the water or outside.Try almost anything once
Posts: 2,746

Nice!! We hardly get to see reports from there,thanks
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 10:01 PM
High on the Mountain Top
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Qualicum Beach, BC, Canada.
Interest: general mountaineering/ hiking/ backpacking/ skiing/ kayaking
Posts: 1,704

Hi Greyhound,

I did the same route in July 1999. We went in via Price Creek (the route was in disrepair even then) and we encountered hard avalanche debris just below Cream Lake. We walked across a still frozen over Cream Lake, with blue showing at it's edges, camped on snow and did the X Gully Route and traversed the Hanging Glacier, to reach the main summit.

That was a big snow year, just like now. I would think that several Island peaks will be in good form this year. Septimus, Elkhorn, Colonel Foster, Rugged, Nine Peaks, to just mention a few.

I'm aiming for Misthorn and Margaret peaks, this summer, via the Bedwell Lakes/Cream Lake route. I expect to be on snow for much of my trip, maybe even while camping at Cream Lake.

Your "Mt Septimus" photo, showing a hiker on the SE approach, says that it would be an easy "walk up" if the avalanche conditions were stable. The small black pointed peak, on the right, is what's known as the "Citadel". A good call on your part to turn back. The mountain's not going anywhere too soon in the future.

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post #6 of (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 08:26 AM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: nanaimo, BC, Canada.
Posts: 117

Hi Peter
We did the X-gulley, Hanging glacier route last July. Conditions were cloudy and wet, so we abandoned the climb on the
final push to the summit. There was a lot of snow then... 8 - 10 feet at Cream Lake and we could still walk across the lake.
3 days later everything froze up nice and hard, but we were on Nine-Peaks then.
The big bowl at Green Lake looks like a good place for a base camp to access the Misthorns, Rousseau, Septimus, and Margaret.
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