The forecast called for 60% chance of rain. As if we did not now that that is really codespeak for "100% chance of rain, 60% of the time", we headed out to Statlu lake. 3 hours driving time from downtown Vancouver to the 2WD parking spot, being extra careful with my Mazda 3 on the slippery logging road. There is active logging in the Mistery Creek branch. This means that the road is being constantly graded, and hence very accessible for 2WD. It also means you encounter fully loaded trucks, graders, and bulldozers every 5-10 minutes.
The view from the road, just before the branch with the 2WD parking.
Because of a small discrepancy in the GPS coordinates in the wiki with the actual 2WD parking spot, we spent about 20 minutes looking for the trail. After we found it, all was good. There was very little rain at the beginning, and the weather held until we made it to the lake.
Gary and Logan descending to the first creek crossing:
Wulf's bridge. Words cannot convey my admiration and thanks.
Hiking the old logging road. The forest is closing in.
It took us one hour to get to this point. Where we once again missed the old trailhead (GPS waypoint in the wiki is correct, we just weren't looking), and ended up at the old highway bridge, which doesn't look terribly safe. We quickly backtracked and started on our way up.
45 minutes later we were walking by the scary slab:
And in short order we got the first views:
We stopped for a quick lunch, and pressed on. At the first talus slope, Gary and Logan went for a swim. Video of the even has been censored. While they were recovering from their wounds, I fooled around with the camera:
From this point on, the rain intensified, making things slightly trickier. The talus slopes were slippery. The trail was covered in thick underbush, resulting in us getting soaked to the bone. It was observed that we probably wouldn't have been much wetter had we walked directly in the lake. There were a couple of spills, caused by hidden rocks and slippery roots.
Gary crossing the first talus slope:
3.5 hours after leaving the car, we reached the waterfall. Beautiful stuff:
By this point it was really pouring down. We turned around, watching our step carefully, and were back at the campsite in one hour. We met a friendly chap from Agassiz, who was going to stay the night in his bivy. Another hour and a half saw us back at the car. After changing into dry clothes, we started the long drive back on the logging road, with less traffic but more mud. Shortly after, we became the most underdressed customers at Lou's Grill in Abbotsford - amazing burgers, amazing ribs.
Lots of rain, slippery stuff, the occasional great view, mud all over, soaked to the bone. Pure BC bliss. I can't wait to go back (on a sunny day, though!).
In closing, a shot of the abandoned road on our way back: