Ascent of Elkhorn Mountain on 2011-10-01

Climber: Thomas Burley

Others in Party:Stephen Wheeler <1973>
Randy Bosma
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, October 1, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Elkhorn Mountain
    Location:Canada-British Columbia
    Elevation:7198 ft / 2193 m

Ascent Trip Report

We drove up from Victoria on a Friday, and the weather looked worse and worse the farther north we got. We started up the Elk River Trail in mid afternoon and "enjoyed" the bushwhack up the sometimes flagged route to the col on the NW ridge, getting there at dark and pitching camp in the small open area on the ridge. We hoped the rain would hold off until morning and it did, but the clouds were intermittently obscuring the top of the mountain when we set off at 8 a.m. up the NW Ridge. We made good time to the col at the top of the West basin and found the route leading up into the West Gullies, but had some difficulty figuring out the way around the large chokestone. Eventually we tried the small ramp on climbers' right up into the small cave under the stone and then up the chimney above. The climb up the gullies above was fun, with enough exposure that we roped up, all the time hoping the rain would hold off until the summit. It did, and we topped out to a great view of the other peaks in the area, under a heavy layer of cloud. We rapped back down the gulleys in good time and were back in camp before dark, hoping the rain would hold off until morning. It did and we hurried down off the ridge to avoid the rain, that ended up never starting. A great climb on a great mountain in a great part of the Island. Highly recommended.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:6171 ft / 1880 m
    Total Elevation Loss:6171 ft / 1880 m
    Grade/Class:Low 5th Class
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack, Stream Ford, Snow on Ground, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Rock Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Rope, Tent Camp
    Nights Spent:2 nights away from roads
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Overcast
Cloudy, threatening rain, but we stayed dry
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:6171 ft / 1880 m
    Route:Northwest Ridge/West Gullies
    Start Trailhead:Elk River Trailhead  1027 ft / 313 m
    Time:2 Days 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:6171 ft / 1880 m
    Route:same as ascent
    End Trailhead:Elk River Trailhead  1027 ft / 313 m
    Time:1 Days 

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