Headed for the Mountains
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Pitt Meadows, BC, Canada.
Interest: Hiking, scrambling and mountaineering.
Mount Frosty - April 20, 2019
Pristine views, route finding, stalked by an overly amorous Blue Grouse, lots of trail breaking, blowdown, rebuilding the summit cairn, the silence of nature...
I lost count of how many times I changed gear (I needed everything I brought numerous times... snowshoes, micro-spikes, crampons, hiking poles, ice ax, etc) ... typical shoulder season hike in the back country... the first hour of lower elevation switchback stuff was borderline annoying with the ice and narrow consolidated snow from old uptrack/snowshoe traffic where you step a little left or right and you post hole. Like walking a line of bowling balls... further up there was also a bunch of trail re-routing around a handful of blowdowns...
There was a super aggressive Blue Grouse at the second lookout of the upper switchbacks... not sure what the deal was here... he kept circling me and attempting to peck my legs sporting his crazy yellow orange 3D eyebrows, but I had my handy anti grouse gaiters on. Once I realized he was not going to give up I decided I should move on and he followed me for a good 5 minutes threatening with his stutter cackle nonsense... I also had to fight him off on the way down 10 hours later! (I am pretty sure I have met his cousin on Seymour... lol)
Other than the psycho Grouse I had the whole mountain to myself... I attempted to stay true to the faintest trail from previous adventurers but I lost visual of it a number of times and had to continue to make corrections using my summer GPX route. This as you can imagine created what I would not consider my best route finding trail... more of a franken-trail. Meh, its winter and there were literally zero markers so there you go... following anyone's trail in the winter is always a risk... you have been warned, lol.
- There are no running water sources yet on any part of the trail... still way under the snow layer... I thought at least the creek by the cabin would be exposed but no... that area is still under a meter and a half of snow.
- Lots of slide evidence but no activity throughout the day
- I had to break trail from the cabin to the peak and pretty much back again since the snow had softened a bit with the afternoon sun
- The summit cairn was not really there when I arrived and the post was laying asunder (is this done by Manning on purpose?) .. so I resurrected the summit post and spent a little time rebuilding the base to hold it - please add some more rocks when you get up there, I was running out of time so had to exercise the good 'ole 80/20 rule
- The ramp up to the ridge is a bit sketchy with some exposure and iffy footing and you need to navigate the cross loaded cornices along the ridge so please don't try this if you are not experienced
- Frosty is best visited in end of September-early October when the ancient Larch forest turns a brilliant golden colour immediately after the first heavy frost cycle (some of these larches are purported to be over 2000 yrs old) - highly recommended to see it once in your lifetime
And some trivia to wrap this up... the peak I attained and the one that 99% summit is actually not the true peak... the true peak is 18m taller and 1km across a narrow ridge line that runs from the sub peak in a NW orientation. You will know what I am talking about when you get up there... you cant miss it.
Have fun out there and stay safe.
Nothing worthwhile is easy.
Last edited by Rex; 04-27-2019 at 11:46 AM.