Category Archives: Exploration

Tree hunting, charting, and mapping trails

Tolkien, the Story of a Tree

 

Imagine a journey back in time, if you will, to the year 1497, let’s say. A tiny seed cone from a western red cedar flutters to earth deep in the North Shore Mountains, in what would later be known as the Hydraulic Creek drainage in the Seymour River Valley. It comes quietly to rest on an outcropping of granite, and in this protected enclave, somehow takes root and begins life as a tiny seedling Continue reading Tolkien, the Story of a Tree

Canyoneering 101: An Afternoon in Looper Creek Canyon

It was September of 2012 when I received a message from my good friend Chris: Was I interested in joining him and a group of friends to do some canyoneeering on Vancouver Island? First, a brief explanation, of sorts. For those of you who have never heard of canyoneering, it’s a sport in which you don a wetsuit and dry pack and make your way down a creek canyon as best you can to hopefully emerge in one piece. Continue reading Canyoneering 101: An Afternoon in Looper Creek Canyon

Cheewhat to Carmanah, a Journey Back In Time

 

When I first found myself on the west coast of British Columbia after arriving from Quebec in the late 1970s, the very first thing that captivated me here in British Columbia were the towering conifers. The very scent of the forest was something completely unknown to me, and I can recall spending an inordinate amount of time looking upward in admiration Continue reading Cheewhat to Carmanah, a Journey Back In Time

Good Friday on Mount Bishop

 

In memories of Easters past, there will always be one, for me,  that stands out from the rest. Most recollections of this holiday are marked by the gathering of families and friends, feasting on turkey, and catching up on everyone’s trials and tribulations. Then, however, there was Good Friday of 2006, and the day that was spent climbing Mt. Bishop in the North Shore Mountains Continue reading Good Friday on Mount Bishop

Hunting the Secrets of the North Shore: The Old Mines of Lynn Headwaters

***A word of warning***

Exploring mines is an inherently dangerous activity. The author encourages you to heed all warning signs and take all precautions! Do not enter open mine adits! Continue reading Hunting the Secrets of the North Shore: The Old Mines of Lynn Headwaters

Mt Bishop, In Tribute to Fred Mills

Well secluded in a remote corner of Mt Seymour Provincial Park is a 1508 metre peak that towers high above the Seymour Valley to its west, and the waters of the Indian Arm  to the east. That mountain is Mt Bishop. It was named for Charles Joseph Bishop, the first president of the British Columbia Mountaineering Club (BCMC ), who died in a crevasse fall Continue reading Mt Bishop, In Tribute to Fred Mills

Burwell Ridge Rocks!

As you examine the peaks of the North Shore Mountains from the north shore of Burrard Inlet, the highest mountain visible is one whose name escapes most of the people of Vancouver. That mountain, and its broad, accompanying ridge, is called Mt. Burwell Continue reading Burwell Ridge Rocks!

Traversing the Ridge of Chanter

Tucked away on the sharp divide separating Cyrtina Creek and Furry Creek, the unofficially named Chanter Peak, approached via its western sub peaks looked to be an adventurous ascent.  Simon had done all the research, and his promise of grand views with a challenging climb was more than enough to pique my curiosity! Continue reading Traversing the Ridge of Chanter

Welcome to the Jungle!

There are times when I write about a trip in the mountains that I struggle to find the right words to tell the tale, and then there are the stories that almost write themselves, and this one is definitely the latter! It all began innocently enough, with an email from Doug. He had studied his maps and came up with the idea to traverse The Needles, an obscure group of wooded summits north of Lynn Ridge and deep in the heart of the North Shore Mountains. They were steep, largely unknown to most, and shrouded in mystery. They still are Continue reading Welcome to the Jungle!

North Shore Boys Storm the South Needle

It was, of all things, a chance encounter. He had read several of my trip reports, posted on a hiking forum, on relatively obscure pursuits in the North Shore Mountains, and simply sent me a message. At first I was not even certain I’d answer, as I’m given to solo pursuits, but for whatever reason I did. That was in late May of 2004, and it likely marked a distinct change in the course of both of our lives. That was how I met Doug, who has become a regular partner in crime on so many of my most enjoyable trips, and one of my closest friends Continue reading North Shore Boys Storm the South Needle