Anyone hiked the Indian Arm Trail recently? - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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Default Anyone hiked the Indian Arm Trail recently?

Hi y'all,

I'm planning to hike Don Mcpherson's Indian Arm Trail in the late summer / early fall, but can only find trip reports from several years back (about '06 and older). Has anyone hiked this route more recently or know of its conditions? Specifically, is the route passable and are most of the markings still present? Otherwise, I will be doing some day hikes on several parts of it and I will report how the trail looks. It just seems strange there is a dearth of reports from the past few years. Any other tips from people knowledgeable about all or part of this trail?

Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
quote: It just seems strange there is a dearth of reports from the past few years.
Given that it is ridiculously difficult as trails go, more of a mountaineering exercise (and don't forget that it's mostly below treeline, and that the local mountain goats like to chew through the fixed lines so that there are spots where you may need to be able to do a short rappel and/or some difficult scrambling edging into vegetated and dirty mid 5th class climbing) it is not strange at all that there are few reports.

It's more the case that it would be strange if there actually were reports.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 12:34 PM
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Like the Fools Gold and the Stoltman Traverse, it's all but gone by this point. The last TR I read, from back around '06, reported the flagging is gone for large segments.

Eight years is a long time in the coastal environment after all. It's a shame, since it leaves The Stein as the only non-technical A-B long distance backcountry trek within a reasonable distance of the city.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 01:20 PM
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Sounds like he nailed up metal markers on trees, I would imagine they would still be around, interesting route.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 02:50 PM
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it is a route, not a trail. I was at a talk given by Don Mcpherson on the trail. This is not for the faint of heart or a beginner. I should have a map at home I can post (if I can find it) to give you an idea.
I have not been on it
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 06:52 PM
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Sadly not enough people ever completed the route for it to be "maintained". (Which isnt really surprising). If you do go for it, make sure to be able to carry lots of water, for it can be hard to find late in the year (especially with this years low snow pack).
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 12:11 AM
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Trail bed was pretty good where not snow covered as far as Dickens about a year ago. Metal markers too.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 12:42 AM
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dang, now simonc is gonna do this route in 48 hours without even lunch a break.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 01:03 AM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by simonc

Trail bed was pretty good where not snow covered as far as Dickens about a year ago. Metal markers too.
Good to know; I'd read your trip report when you posted it but didn't realize how far along Dickens was.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 11:12 AM
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this route has been on my bucket list for some time now - if you do this, please post a report, and if possible, GPS tracks. I would love to follow you on this trip.

Speaking of which, there used to be a few old topo maps of this route floating around. Does anyone happen to have one?
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses everyone, I would still love to hear from someone that's hiked in the area recently and can comment on the permanence of the marking disks. I expected that at least a couple of adventurous people would have attempted it more recently. I heard that the amount of rappelling / rope climbing on the route is exaggerated if the fixed ropes are still in place.

As gdichasaz mentioned, any links to topo maps would be awesome too. I found the Google Earth .kmz file of the route here: http://bbs.keyhole.com/ubb/download.php?Number=307561 but I'm not sure if the GPS waypoints can be extracted from it. PM me if you might be interested in a day hike to check out some of the route (or maybe the entire trail [8D])!
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by gdichasaz

this route has been on my bucket list for some time now - if you do this, please post a report, and if possible, GPS tracks. I would love to follow you on this trip.

Speaking of which, there used to be a few old topo maps of this route floating around. Does anyone happen to have one?
We've had it on our radar to chip away at both ends, unfortunately it looks like I'm not going to get any long weekends this summer. If we do go I'll let you know...

As for the markers, I can't imagine they would be frequent enough to aid in navigation, more likely a reminder that you are on route.
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 05:11 PM
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I did it back in '03, Seymour to Buntzen. (SimonC: C'mon, you can beat my 27 hours trail time, 47 hours clock time.)

Fixed ropes and rappelling not as bad as made out, route-finding difficulty worse. Much of the ridge will not be worse, little work other than marking was done or needed, the sub-alpine doesn't choke up like the slopes. Just be really sure of the route around Fannin lake and especially getting down from the ridge at the correct place. The descent to Indian River will be terrible both navigating and moving, at the time some logging was fresh and will be very brushy and indistinct by now. The climb back up may be solid slide alder, but not as tricky to navigate.

Don't take it lightly! It's a rough vague route, not a trail. A wonderful experience for those capable, a nightmare ending in a helicopter ride (if lucky) for some.
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 06:04 PM
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Here you go kids. The map is larger than my scanner so I did top & bottom. C.T. will not allow high res so this will have to do. This was sold by ecospirit.ca but I don't know where else you can get this. I got mine from Don.
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post #15 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 08:53 PM
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please keep me in the loop for trying this one - it's tough (judging by the maps it's brutal!) but I think it would be very rewarding. I'd be game to do it, if the timing works out.


[/quote]

We've had it on our radar to chip away at both ends, unfortunately it looks like I'm not going to get any long weekends this summer. If we do go I'll let you know...

As for the markers, I can't imagine they would be frequent enough to aid in navigation, more likely a reminder that you are on route.
[/quote]
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