Garibaldi Hike – Black Tusk and Panorama Ridge in Summer
by Henry Armitage
Why do I point out this is happening in Summer? Because there’s every chance I’ll be going back in Winter!
A couple of weeks after the White Water Rafting fun, we decided more hiking was in order! Garibaldi Provincial Park it is! Organised by Christina and Stephen (both of whom also organised the Juan de Fuca trip) and attended by Hannah, Mark, Scott and I…. but the thing is, Hannah, Mark and I couldn’t make it until after work. We were going to have to start this hike at night.
Great time to find out the new rechargable batteries, that Duracell claimed were “precharged”, were actually not charged after all, and therefore my headlamp was out of action. Fortunately, I have a backup light.
It seems 8km uphill took longer than we thought, so we arrived about 90 minutes late arriving at Garibaldi Lake Campground. Stephen was on the sat phone to us and there was a very relieved look on Christina’s face. There was a slightly more bitter look on someone else’s face when I accidentally used his stove, thinking it was ours.
Next morning, this is what we wake up to!
Our first day hike was to Black Tusk, which I’ve seen many times from the top of Whistler, but never been to it. I’d forgotten to bring a smaller backpack, so had to borrow the top of one of the backpacks, which handily converts into a bumbag!
So we were wondering back down again when we take a good look at the slope to the West… and quick as a flash, Mark and Scott decide bootskiing is in order!
Of course, Stephen and I looked at each other and decided we had clearly missed a trick! We were both skiers, so we must be born to doing that!
So there we were at the top of the cornice, looking down… I mean how hard can this be!?
Complete with ice burns on the arms and numb hands, we headed back. As we neared the camp, we found this:
In terms of the budding photographers among us, this evening was going to be great! We settled down to the bagged dinners, while enviously looking over at the folks who had brought up an entire stirfry with them! However, we were seeing scenes like this!
Reminder, I’m using my Lumix TS3 for this! However, all of today’s fun had taken it’s toll on the battery. I was getting critically low and one more day to go.
The next day, we were heading to Panorama Ridge before we hiked down. Yep, 26km in one day! I had to be a little more frugal on the photos given the battery situation, and even borrowed Hannah’s camera (not that I have the photos from it yet missy!)
After that, I was fully out of power, so the rest of the photos are from Mark’s camera.
Then we caught sight of a nice downhill slope… and decided that it was time to try out bootskiing or just arse-sliding down!!!
Thing is, in this situation I tend to bite off a little more than I could chew. After Christina had a great slide down the next slope, then deftly caught by Mark, I basically lept into the slide slope, which was a little more slippery than anticipated! It’s not on camera, I essentially flew (catching air a few times), down this. Mark pretty much decided that 87kg moving at speed was far too much to stop, so I flew down twice the distance of everyone else:
So back to camp, where Stephen and Hannah (who hadn’t come out that day) had squared everything away. We did however have a visitor:
On the way down we passed The Barrier (that we can actually see now, because it’s light)! This huge lava dam, that creates Garibaldi Lake, is degrading. Have I mentioned there was an earthquake nearby recently? Might have shaken a few things, just in time for us to see it, and Mark to photograph it:
Anyway, 2 hours of wet boots downhill later, we were finally at the car. Great time! Well recommended!
Here’s some extra research links for everyone:
- Garibaldi Provincial Park on BC Parks
- Garibaldi Provincial Park on Vancouver Trails
- Panorama Ridge on Vancouver Trails
- Black Tusk on Vancouver Trails