Mt. Brunswick & Mt. Harvey - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 02:49 AM Thread Starter
Hittin' the Trails
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Default Mt. Brunswick & Mt. Harvey

From what I understand, this is a very popular trail, so this trip report will be to serve as a record for me to look back on my first full mountaineering expedition!

*Note: Unfortunately, ClubTread won't allow any of my photographs to be uploaded due to their large size.

June 25th, 2014;
Starting from Lions' Bay at 6:40am, Ted Oliver and I began our ascent of Mt. Brunswick.
Being from Ontario, and having only ever climbed Seymour, some of the early views of Mt. Harvey we had were both somewhat haunting and inspiring- not that I needed any more inspiration!

We also had some early views of Tantalus, and HAT mountain. The latter of which, Ted and I discussed, has the most uninteresting and disappointing name imaginable. From one angle, a nearby ridge makes this mountain more like an ass than a hat, so it shall be known henceforth as Ass-Hat Mountain to me and everyone I show.

After a number of hours, the foliage started to change, and something about the forest around us seemed to be teeming with magic. I know that sounds ridiculous, but my suspicions that there was something significant about this place were confirmed by a comment that Ted made which was uncharacteristically optimistic! (Don't worry; you can pick your jaw up from the floor at your leisure whilst I continue.)

Beginning to summit Brunswick's peak, we had great views of Hanover, and some of the beautiful lakes nearby (Deeks, Brunswick?).

Summited at 10:35am, so it took us about four hours to climb Brunswick. 3-5 is the expected time, and Ted couldn't seem to believe me that we hadn't taken longer!

Anyways, the summit was spectacular. The whole way was, really. Low lying clouds and veils of mist had been rolling about near Harvey and the Lions all morning, but were now stunningly unobstructed as they grazed about. I soaked in as much distance, majesty, and wisdom as I could from the meditatively quiet landscape before Ted suggested we keep on. I took an extra few moments to study the tiny, yet ancient trees & young wildflowers- some of which I had never witnessed before.

On the way to Magnolia Meadows, I saw for my first time some avalanche plains! Ted mentioned that the white-crusted plants growing were likely premature avalanche lillies.

I'm unsure at what point Magnesia Meadows started to feel different, but its high, rocky walls and beautiful inward view of Howe Sound made it seem like some kind of stronghold. At the time it was mostly covered in snow, so the best description I could give would be to try and think of what Valhalla could be like, and tone it down a little. It reminded me of part of Lao Tzu's Taoist classic, Tao Te Ching, that goes:

"The valley spirit never dies;
It is the woman, primal mother.
Her gateway is the root of heaven and Earth.
It is like a veil barely seen.
Use it; it will never fail."

(At this point those of you who are reading this and haven't met me are probably feeling confident in the opinion that this author is some ridiculous and outlandish hippy! Well, you're probably right, to be honest. Perception is reality, so they say.)

From Magnesia Meadows, we found a trail up Mt. Harvey. What a beautiful trail it was! It was a pleasure to hike up through such a thriving ecosystem, that grew more modest and rocky as we climbed. It was rewarding to see the broad side of Brunswick to sort of get an idea for what we had already accomplished. Also from this trail, there was a great view of Cathedral Mountain. I had never seen the back of it before, and had, during the winter, stared long at its opposite face while riding the chairlift at Seymour.

Mt. Harvey is a satisfying summit as well. The trail continued on along down another ridge- though was much more open. I preferred the rough ascent because the descent afterwards allowed one to continue enjoying the view! The West Lion looked awesome from this angle, and I knew I'd have to satisfy the tourist in me and go stand on it soon.

When we came to the lower ridge with many dead trees about, Ted found the trail West, down the Lions' trail to the intersection of trail where we were first given the choice between Brunswick and the Lions. The trail down the mountain was rather easy to follow-due in part to its steepness, but had somewhat-sudden cliffs along the left side of us most of the way. I'm glad there was a trail, because at this point in the day, the forest was starting to seem like an enigmatic maze.

We made it back without injury (except for my sunburns), and in good spirits! The last 200m were very difficult for me. I don't know if I've ever walked downhill for that long before, and my knees have yet to fully forgive me! hahaha

The time was 5:36, and we had completed an ELEVEN HOUR HIKE, with mainly brief pauses on the trail (stopping for breaks wasn't a worthwhile option), and at most 20 minutes spent on either summit- though we estimated at the time that both summit food-breaks were only 10-15 minutes long. I thanked my legs by icing them thoroughly that night and resting them for the next day or so. Having never had such an experience, I was somewhat surprised to find that even my emotions seemed burned out for the 24-48 hours afterwards! It was 100% worth it, and I thanked Ted as much as I could without crossing the line of berating him with annoying "thank you's", for we already had made plans for the next mountain, and I didn't want him to rethink them!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 04:40 PM
High on the Mountain Top
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Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
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Always a pleasure to see the mountains through unjaded eyes.Alan seemed so enchanted by it all,that I can pretty much guarantee a future of climbing dirtbagdom.Should be living in a cave near Squish with a gal named Moonflower within the next year.As for the " uncharacteristically optimistic comment"it only seemed that way,as it was slightly less curmudgeonly than my usual rantings.Way to put the boots to me when I'm down,Allan.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 04:55 PM
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You may be able to resize your pictures in camera or from software on your computer (installed or downloaded). 1.5mb the max size for this forum I think.

Ted's a good guy to hike with. Don't do any summit yoga though or talk about the P49 Brewery.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 05:14 PM
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Well done!

Whut, no kale? No bagnight?
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 09:38 PM
Hittin' the Trails
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I had the same issue when trying to upload pictures from my dslr to clubtread - file size was too large. This is because I shoot in RAW. You can simply resize your pictures to make them fit within the maximum file size limit (1.5mb). I either resize them in Lightroom or MS paint haha.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 11:33 PM
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that's a great trip. good work guys. now let's see some photos!
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 05-28-2015, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tedoliver View Post
Alan seemed so enchanted by it all,that I can pretty much guarantee a future of climbing dirtbagdom.Should be living in a cave near Squish with a gal named Moonflower within the next year.

So far so good, eh?
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 05-29-2015, 12:01 AM
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Very enjoyable report! Thanks Foxfire.
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