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post #1 of (permalink) Old 07-29-2014, 12:59 AM Thread Starter
Summit Master
ChuckLW's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Backpacking, scrambling, skiing, mountain biking, skim boarding, running
Posts: 3,165
Default Face Mountain July 25 2014

Face Mountain is accessed off the Hurley FSR at approx. KM 23 (1 KM before cresting Railroad Pass enroute to Gold Bridge). From there it's a hike up to the Semaphore Lakes area (good camping if interested in an overnight trip) and then on to the Mountain itself with a summit a little over 8000'. Non-technical, dog-friendly but some tricky route finding even with the help of Matt Gun's Scrambles book.

Kenzie and I hit the Semaphore lakes trail at high noon. Carrying just a day pack the steep trail to the lake area was dispatched in about an hour. From there it was on to the creek crossing below the waterfall from the glacier above. This was accomplished with boulder hopping where the creek is well braided close to the falls.

Time to far side of the creek was an hour and a quarter.

From there we angled up to hiker's right making for the last clump of trees below the cliff band. So far pretty obvious. Then up to the left below the cliff bands in search of the gulley that leads to the ridge above. Bypassed a first shortish gulley that didn't look promising. We then came to the proper gulley which climbs into a gunsight between rock walls. Phaffed around a bit here as I wasn't convinced this was the right approach. Ultimately determined it was and carried on.

Unfortunately we went too high to a bluff on the ridge and then had to down climb a ways to find the traverse to the right below the bluff. Before much longer we found the large and obvious ramp that is the key to the summit. At the top of the ramp there is a short hike up heather covered slopes to the final summit block. No real scrambling involved but many great views and rich photo opportunities overlooking Locomotive and the Train glacier (many photo opportunities!).

Total ascent time from Hurley to summit was just over four hours. Descent with one more brief route mix up was 3 hours for 7 satisfying hours car to car.

Photo uploaded continues to befuddle me so here is a Picasa link to a chronological photo set:

\"Aging ... it beats the alternative\"
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