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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2015, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Default Beaujolais Peak

Aug 11, 2015
Inspired by a couple of excellent trip reports, I thought I'd test my comfort zone and try the west ridge of Beaujolais Peak.
Beaujolais-Merlot-Mystery-Valpolicella (a CT trip)
Mystery & Beaujolais (RichSo)

Directions in the Scrambles guidebook are spot on:
From the turnoff onto the Hurley River FSR, it's about 20km to the unmarked Hope Creek FSR. Not a fun drive. With my stiff suspension, my teeth were rattling non-stop on the relentless washboard. After 7km on the Hope Creek road, take a left. 5km to go, but although the road itself isn't bad, a couple of sections are bushy.


I parked at the landing, and headed down to cross the creek. Unfortunately, I picked up a set of flagging which led me astray. If you can find the tiny creek on the south side, there is a trail which I found on my return. You're aiming for a col south of the parking area. The flagging took me due east. Once I noticed I was off course, I worked my way back on track. Route finding is easy once you're up higher.

Gain the ridge to the east of the col. Traverse around the south side and the beautiful valley comes into view. Head due east.


Looking back at Brown Molar and Canine Peaks.


I'd been feeling very strange mentally on my last few hikes. Thinking about grizzlies, broken bones, being alone in the middle of nowhere, not really enjoying myself lately. Kind of a messed up head space. I think I've been hiking solo too much.

But, the sunshine in the beautiful valley and all the marmot whistles were perking me up, and I jauntily strode through the grasses and flowers.

That is, up until I began nearing the crux.




I had done my research, examined photos, knew I had the ability, and I had a change of underwear. But it doesn't change my lizardbrain emotional response to exposure. I think the climb only lasted 30 seconds as I scurried up the grippy slab with no thought to aesthetic grace. Being solo, I didn't even have to mask my whimpers of fear.

There was a beautiful grassy ledge where I lay down in fetal position to catch my breath and suck my thumb for comfort. The hard part was done. Or was it?


Continuing up, I made the mistake of going straight up the small pinnacle. Backtracked a wee bit to easier terrain and headed for the headwall. I started climbing but it became increasingly vertical. Clearly not moderate scrambling terrain. Tried again slightly to the right. Again, into technical climbing terrain. Dropped down and tried a 3rd time even further to the right. This time, it went through, and there was even a cairn at the top (presumably to help find the descent from the top).

The summit is roomy and flat with outstanding views in every direction. I spent some time here enjoying some sunshine and lunch.


For the descent, I had planned to do the long non-technical ridge. A fine return walk with great views sounded like just what I needed.


I came upon the route described by a previous party and changed my original plan. The talus slope looked good, and turned out to be a very fast descent option. Fairly solid too.


A photo showing my route:


Hiking in, I stayed too high, and ended up having to bushwhack through some thick vegetation. For the return, I had a great visual of the terrain and could avoid all the thickets by staying a bit lower. It adds a tiny bit of extra elevation work, but walking through grass and heather is definitely preferable.


The climb of Beaujolais Peak is well described in the Scrambles guidebook, however, it doesn't mention that the peak can be summitted simply by hiking up.

Option 1: Work your way up blocky talus aiming for a point on the ridge about 700m south of the summit (easy scrambling).
Option 2: Access the south-west end of the ridge via grassy slopes. The ridge is about 2km in length.


Stats:
13km return
1,170m cumulative elevation gain

My route is in red. Green route is borrowed from a previous party (see Bivouac).




I enjoyed a cool drink at the car, scared some Grouse on the road, and then drove the rattly road back to Pemberton. Overall, I put almost 400km on the vehicle on this trip, and spent just as much time driving as I did hiking. Sheesh!


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Last edited by guntis; 08-12-2015 at 11:43 PM.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2015, 05:00 PM
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Some good chuckles in there and glad to hear you kept your underwear clean Also glad that you didn't let the weird head space stop ya and pushed your comfort zone to get to the top )) Congrats!
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2015, 05:26 PM
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Nice trip!

Sounded like you needed some beaujolais to calm that head space devil ;-)
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2015, 05:29 PM
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That head space kind comes and goes, doesn't it? I guess it's what keeps you alive, in the end.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2015, 06:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guntis View Post
I enjoyed a cool drink at the car, scared some Grouse on the road, and then drove the rattly road back to Pemberton.
Payback for all the times they scare the crap out of us along the trail. : )
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 01:25 AM
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You got a taste, you'll be going back.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 01:32 AM
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Nice one Guntis. Good for you to getting that scrambling done with success.

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 08:03 PM
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Thanks for putting up the TR, nice to know a loop can be made of this mountain, I will have to remember that when it comes time.


I know what you mean about the driving considering where I live, it's usually 8hrs or more of driving for a 9hr day in the mountains. That's why whenever anyone offers to drive I'll gladly accept that offer.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 08-13-2015, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Spectrum View Post
Thanks for putting up the TR, nice to know a loop can be made of this mountain, I will have to remember that when it comes time.

I know what you mean about the driving considering where I live, it's usually 8hrs or more of driving for a 9hr day in the mountains. That's why whenever anyone offers to drive I'll gladly accept that offer.
Another point is that the other side of the Beaujolais ridge is less cliffy, meaning the crossover to get to Mystery is not difficult (except for the fact that it's a longer hike with more up and down).

Maybe I'll have to tag along when you go for this one - it might help having someone coax me up the scary bits (Interestingly, Black Tusk was no problem for me, but then, that was 20yrs ago, and the West Lion I've done several times, so I'm also comfortable there. Maybe it's the unknown that messes with my mind.)
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 03:55 AM
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Originally Posted by guntis View Post
Another point is that the other side of the Beaujolais ridge is less cliffy, meaning the crossover to get to Mystery is not difficult (except for the fact that it's a longer hike with more up and down).

Maybe I'll have to tag along when you go for this one - it might help having someone coax me up the scary bits (Interestingly, Black Tusk was no problem for me, but then, that was 20yrs ago, and the West Lion I've done several times, so I'm also comfortable there. Maybe it's the unknown that messes with my mind.)

add me to facebook or get my digits mang. more people I know to get out with the better.
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 08:58 AM
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Good for you guntis! Love your honesty and funny write up. Nice looking scramble and peak.
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 01:56 PM
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I recognize that green track log :-)

Good to see the road is still drivable
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 08-15-2015, 04:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guntis View Post
I'd been feeling very strange mentally on my last few hikes. Thinking about grizzlies, broken bones, being alone in the middle of nowhere, not really enjoying myself lately. Kind of a messed up head space. I think I've been hiking solo too much.
This is not far off my experience of solo hiking. My internal monologue revolves around 5 subjects;

1) OMG is that a bear? (answer: no it is a stump/rock/shadow/the sound of the tips of your own hiking poles rustling the bushes)

2) don't roll an ankle don't roll an ankle don't roll an ankle

3) am I there yet

4) no one will actually know if I quit now and say I made it

5) oooohhh photo opportunity, this will be my best "shot of a trail winding through alpine meadows" ever!
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Semper fudge
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 08-15-2015, 05:40 PM
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Sounds like you guys need to adopt a dog. : ) Or perhaps approach your local shelter to see if you could take one of the 'long-timers' (those that have been there a long time) out on a hike (on leash). You'll likely need to demonstrate that you can read, understand and handle a shelter dog, so volunteering some time at the shelter first would be preferred (at least it should be). Just imagine the feedback you could provide on how the dog was away from the shelter stress. Not to mention the scenic pictures of a happy dog for their adoption website.

Great for you, and well needed break away from the shelter for the dog. : )
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post #15 of (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 01:47 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by John and Katie View Post
Sounds like you guys need to adopt a dog. : ) Or perhaps approach your local shelter to see if you could take one of the 'long-timers' (those that have been there a long time) out on a hike (on leash). You'll likely need to demonstrate that you can read, understand and handle a shelter dog, so volunteering some time at the shelter first would be preferred (at least it should be). Just imagine the feedback you could provide on how the dog was away from the shelter stress. Not to mention the scenic pictures of a happy dog for their adoption website.

Great for you, and well needed break away from the shelter for the dog. : )
I know we're going off topic here, but that's an idea I hadn't thought about (ie. taking a shelter dog out for a walk). I've grown up with dogs and had one most of my life. At this stage, I'm not ready to have a dog again, but your suggestion is a good one.
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