Had a day off from work, and decided to head up to Hector Ferguson Lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park.
Going along East Canyon, the trail is mostly cleared and maintained all the way up to the beach at 10km. There were one or two sections where the bushes were getting a bit thick, but nothing unmanageable. Almost immediately after the 10km beach, the trail starts to degrade and becomes much more overgrown.
At 10.5km, the trail dumps you out on to a little beach. I incorrectly assumed that this was where you were supposed to cross, but didn't see any ribbon on the other side. You are actually supposed to head back up into the bushes on the right, but it was very poorly marked. I ended up just wading up the creek until I found the ribbon again.
Once on the west side of Gold Creek, the trail is overgrown, muddy, and has many fallen logs that you need to climb over/under, but it was well flagged and I never really lost the trail. It wouldn't really take that much work to make the trail decent.
The lake was pretty, not really sure if it was worth the trek though. My GPS recorded it as 32km roundtrip, took me 13.5 hours including breaks.
You don't give yourself enough credit Hector Ferguson in a day is not cakewalk. I recall reports of experienced people not making it either for not being able to ford Gold Creek (too early in season), or not being able to find or losing trail on the other side.
We were wondering about going there, we had a spare afternoon a month or so back and walked along the East Canyon Trail. We made it to the 10.5 KM point and wondered where to go at that point. It did look like the trail went to the right but we didnt feel like bushwacking. Nice to see you made it
I went up last winter but only a couple of km past viewpoint beach. A couple of the small bridges had been taken out as they were unsafe for horses. This from the parks ranger who told me that they would work around them and have it ready by June or so. Indicated to me that this trail was no longer used "no one's been up there for years" and I got the impression that the trail is no longer maintained. Appreciated your report. Makes me want to go up there again. FYI the ranger told me that with heavy rains Gold Creek floods badly up there and you may find yourself in thigh deep water or worse!
Thanks for the reports.
I attempted this trail a few years ago, but we couldn't ford the creek, water was too high. I also planned to go there this summer, but on the day of planned trip my partner suddenly suggested Golden Ears, and we went there. But I still keep this lake in my to do list.
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