Vicuna Peak, Guanaco Peak (Jun 13, 2015) - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2015, 05:10 PM Thread Starter
Scaling New Heights
 
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Default Vicuna Peak, Guanaco Peak (Jun 13, 2015)

We weren't planning on returning to the Coquihalla region so soon after doing the Zupjok-Llama-Alpaca Ridge just two weeks ago, but we were tempted by good conditions for the scramble up to Vicuna Peak and Guanaco Peak. Not too hot, shade provided by clouds, and dry rock!


From previous trail reports, we were well-informed about the state of the alder encroaching on the logging road, and so we parked at the Little Douglas Lake recreation site. The moment we stepped outside, we were greeted by literally armies of mosquitoes. Never have I seen so many--it was insane! They must have been desperate for fresh blood...


We scampered off quickly at 10am and walked the 6km logging road to the trail in about an hour. The road is in very good condition, but unfortunately the alder really does prevent any vehicles from driving up the road. Due to the alder, and the fact that we were booking it to avoid the mosquitoes, we missed the turn off to the trail. There are lots of flagging in the alder, but our heads were unfortunately down. The wooden sign and boulder, as described in 103 Hikes, aren't really visible from the road now due to the alder. We did place a cairn on the road to make the trail more obvious.


Made quick work of the uphill segment, which was marked clearly. Several trees to climb over at the bottom, near the clear cut, but otherwise someone has brushed the trail out well. Then came the mud and bog after the steep forest section, where there was no escape. After a short lunch break at the col, we started heading up Vicuna Peak. Very straightforward and nice solid class 3 scramble. The chain at the crux appears to still be in very good condition--without it, climbing up/down that part could be challenging and tricky.


Headed over to Guanaco Peak to bag the summits before descending back down to the car for a 7.5h trip. Due to the mosquitoes, we planned to unlock the car in advance, jump in immediately, drive away, and remove the mosquitoes that foolishly followed us in the car. Success! I've never been on a hike where we left so quickly!




















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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2015, 11:22 PM
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Great day out, thanks for planning the hike djun would just add that road to the recreation site is in good condition; made it up easily in a Nissan Rouge
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2015, 12:29 AM
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Beautiful photos!
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2015, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by sarah_200 View Post
Great day out, thanks for planning the hike djun would just add that road to the recreation site is in good condition; made it up easily in a Nissan Rouge
Or a Honda Civic. But even if the alder was cleared that's definitely not a low-clearance road past the rec site.

Nice meeting your group up there. I wasn't expecting to see anyone else that day and was surprised to hear voices behind me on the trail.

I think you acted as an appetizer for the mosquitos, they were on me like a fat kid on a tim-bit for the last km or so.

That takes care of trip #2 on my top 5 list for this year.



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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-15-2015, 03:00 AM Thread Starter
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Nice to meet you too, Jeff!


I was wondering whether you were a Clubtreader or not, but totally escaped my mind to ask you! Glad to see that you got off the mountain safely too, despite the horrendous number of mosquitoes.


Vicuna is a nice scramble isn't it? I'm surprised it isn't in Matt Gunn's Scrambles book.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-16-2015, 12:52 AM
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Hey we were there last week-end. Great spot! Only did Guanaco though. Drove our truck to the creek crossing right after Km 12 and camped there. Some vehicles make it in!
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 06-16-2015, 12:54 AM
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Vicuna was the top of my comfort zone in scrambling for me.. Did it and Guanco on a day with Adam 4 - 5 years ago.

Great scramble indeed.

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 06-16-2015, 01:15 AM
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we went 2 weeks ago, drove to road end,truck took a noticable beating on sheetmetal though, I noticed a few more new deep creases on top of the other 1200 ones that tell a story, already there


Did like this area alot , maybe Vicuna next time, hows the route up, straight up the ridge ? kinda can see the route from the saddle, seems exposed in sections or is it fairly moderate?

Last edited by Aqua Terra; 06-16-2015 at 01:52 AM.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 06-16-2015, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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The route is very straightforward and right up the ridge. Good, solid rock to climb on. Parts of the ridge, especially where the chain/cable is located, has some moderate exposure.
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