Saturday, 26 January 2008

Okeover Trail

The first section of the Okeover Trail from the trailhead at Km 7.4 up Southview Road to just past Skyline (Hernandez) Creek and Len's Loop turnoff has been cleared. This allows hikers to exit downhill through the cutblock plantation back to Southview Road, where they can turn south back to their cars.

Syd and Cheryl

BOMB Squad maintenance

Bruce MacDonald reports on trails cleared in the last few weeks:

"Mowat Bay to load out (Block Bay) and Valentine Mtn, cleared.
Hamill Lake trail (West Lake) to Hamill Hill from Paradise Valley Road, cleared.
Cable Trail and Taylor Way, cleared.
Bruce, Ron and BOMBSQUAD."

Thanks guys, your work, as always, is much appreciated.
The view above is from the first picinic table on Valentine Mountain looking west over the Powell River dam, the mill and Harwood Island in the background.

Monday, 21 January 2008

Haywire Bluff Trail

We cleared the Haywire Bluff Trail. Heavy blowdown in the Haywire Park area was already cut out by BOMB Squad. This area has had four Bomb Squad work parties, and two from PAWS. The trees just seem to like falling down here. It's actually quite interesting to walk through the devastation caused by nature. The Haywire Bluff section above the logging spur lost three or four old growth snags, one falling right across the trail. There are still a few dozen left along the way. We relocated the trail around the veteran's root ball to the right, where a little grubbing is still in order. It's nothing nasty, just 10 m not yet grubbed.
The view from the top is as gorgeous as ever, looking down Powell Lake, the marina, the bridge, the smokestack of the mill, with Vancouver Island in the distance, and east, across to the snowcapped Smith Range. The hike takes under an hour with the climb having been made quite tolerable through switchbacks, almost grandma and grandpa approved.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Little Sliammon Lake (SCT)

John, Craig, Clint and I hiked the reroute laid out and marked a few years ago adjacent and through the Little Sliammon Lake cutblock. We reflagged the route, which will run along in the 30 m riparian zone left along the south shore of the lake (see pictures), then follow the ephemeral creek south, upstream and parallel to the logging spur. The route is fairly well flagged now below the road, but it is going to require work. Some machine work will be done on the trail in the section where it crosses a corner of the cutblock.
We anticipate the trail re-establishment will be complete before the end of April for the Annual Marathon Shuffle from Malaspina Road to the Shinglemill, for a total of 29 scenic km on the Sunshine Coast Trail. Perhaps a new picnic table and platform will be built at the edge of the lake at the old Shangri-la site.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Creek Four section of Elephant Lake Trail - CLOSED

Western Forest Products informed us that they have begun logging on the section of Elephant Lake Trail that starts up from Lois Main, at about mile 4, upstream along Creek Four to Jessie's Carved Chair junction on Branch 42.

The trail will have a buffer of 20 m and more, but of course there is danger during harvesting operations, which should be completed by spring. Please avoid this area which is also frequented by the mountain biking folks.

Elephant Lake Trail is still accessible via Branch 41 and then 42 for hiking, likely in the snow at that elevation.

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Appleton Canyon Trail (SCT) & Marathon Trail (SCT)

On Sunday the Hiking Club hiked the Appleton Canyon and then the Marathon Trail out to Gibraltar Bluff. Reportedly 20 participants enjoyed cleared trails.

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Thunder Ridge Trail (SCT)

Today we finished cleaning out the Thunder Ridge Trail (SCT) from Plummer Creek Road to Malaspina Road. Some of the blow downs were very nasty to cut out but our teamwork paid off. We also cleared Jay's Trail from Hwy 101 to the summit of the Thunder Ridge Trail.

As a treat after the work was done we made a small campfire at the Fern Creek camp site and roasted frankfurters.

Peter, Eagle, Doug and Darko

Monday, 14 January 2008

Haslam Lakeshore Trail

Ron and I cleared from Squirrel Crossing to Larson's Landing along the new Haslam Lakeshore Trail and up to Stewart Lake on January 8. Trail in good shape. Some Elk sign near the Larson end of the trail.
The Sunday hikers really appreciated the work done on the Appleton Canyon trail on Sunday.


Sunday, 13 January 2008

Tin Hat Mountain

Tried to go to Tin Hat today. Could only drive 1/2 way up Spring Lake Main from the 12 mile turnoff on the Goat Lake Main.
The snow was deep and wet. There are a couple of trees across the road so bring a chain saw if you want to drive it.
I trudged to the SCT and snowshoed along it past Spring Lake toward Lewis Lake. Snow shoeing in the woods was much easier than on the road. Past Spring Lake the trail was hard to follow in a couple of places due to lack of trail markers, most of it was great though.
Peter Behr

Saturday, 12 January 2008

Suicide Creek Trail

Bruce MacDonald reports that the BOMB Squad cleared all of Suicide Creek Trail on Thursday. It's in really great shape now. There were a couple of inches of snow on the ground and the trail is a bit wet, but a dry day or two will make it excellent to hike on again.

The building division of the BS has been busy spending their last few Thursdays renovating the Girls Guides Camp at Lang Creek and getting it ready for use again by the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts.

Ron Sellers in picture above is enjoying a few minutes of a break before resuming his light housekeeping duties. Thanks, Bruce, Ron and Richie, for the smooth sailing.

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Southview Ridge Trail

Overcast skies today, but dry. Peter, Darko and I turned up Atrevida Loop (clockwise) to hook into the Southview Ridge Trail heading southeast from Tin Can Junction at Km 1. There was a considerable amount of blowdown, but much to our delight it had been cut out by someone unknown within the last month as the shavings were still fresh. All we had to do was buzz the odd rare blowdown and mop up twigs and branches along the way. The level trail is well marked and takes you out onto Southview Road, on the height of land about 1 km up from the highway. We had dropped off a vehicle there so we didn't have to hike back.

Trinket/Bunster Loop

Yesterday, Syd and Cheryl showed their new route which - combined with the bottom of the Marathon Section (SCT) and the Trinket and Bunster Bluff trails - forms a loop through a lovely maturing Douglas fir forest. We cleared lots of blowdown and by the time we reached the viewpoint on the bluff a blizzard was upon us in full force. It was hard discerning Harwood and Savary islands in the strait, with the flakes streaking by nearly horizontally in the valley below.

Monday, 7 January 2008

Sliammon Lake Trail (SCT)

Heavy snowfall this morning as we set out, though no problem for Peter's 4x4. We cleared from Tomkinson (Wilde) Road up at the Km 6 gravel pit parking lot eastward on the Sliammon Lake Trail (SCT). We cleared past Thethyeth Lake out to Kayach Bluff. The top picture shows a view from there looking south over Sliammon Lake. The new cutblock at Little Sliammon Lake is just visible above the far shore. The new logging road exits through the saddle out to the gate on the highway at Sliammon. The snowfall stopped after a while, and Peter and Darko caught some rays at lunch.

Sunday, 6 January 2008

Upper Browne Creek Trail

John and I cleaned out the upper end of Browne Creek Trail from the highway sign near Old Mine Road down to the intersection with Dinner Rock Road, just below the fork and the gates on that road. From there we hiked on down to Hurtado Bay for lunch and our turnaround place.
Now all of Browne Creek Trail and the linked Hurtado Point Loop are cleared.
The photo shows a view of Mace Point on Savary Island taken from Hurtado Bay with a squall of hail just having passed overhead and the skies clearing from Vancouver Island.

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Lower Browne Creek Trail

An unexpectedly sunny morning lured us out, and so we took the chainsaw for a walk. We parked at the gate on Dinner Rock Road, just above where Browne Creek Trail intersects the paved road that runs down to the campsite. Right away we came upon trees that had fallen across the road, before we even got on the trail. We found a good supply of blowdown to cut and clear all along the trail and more across the creek over toward the Hurtado Point/Bay Loop which we had cleared out yesterday.
The railing of the Browne Creek footbridge was damaged by a blowdown at one end, but we cut the bole out of the way, and the bridge is still servicable. There remains one larger tree beyond there that can be easily climbed over, and still needs cutting with the big saw. Other than that the trail is clear now, but would benefit from a bit more sweeping of small woody debris.
If you carry a staff it's easy to flick small branches off the trail without much effort, and no bending down and picking up things. A little flick with the wrist and the offending branch sails off to the side of the trail. Give it a try sometime. Any longish stick, five feet or so, will do the trick. It's actually fun, just ask Peter.
We'll be going over the Upper Browne Creek Trail (to the south of Dinner Rock Road, and uphill to the large wooden trailhead sign up on the highway near Old Mine Road). Conditions of that section are unknown as of this point.

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

Hurtado Point Loop

First day of 2008. Found Hurtado Point/Bay Loop in reasonably good shape with only a couple of dozen smaller blowdowns. Trail is now swept clear of fallen branches, and any blowdown trees have been cut out of the way. Syd and Cheryl had been through the loop a few weeks ago. Thank you. Peter and I found a plastic fan rake at the junction of where the trail branches off down to Hurtado Bay about 100 m above the bay. We left it there propped up against a tree, with its green and orange rakers inviting a little sweeping.

We don't know what the condition beyond the loop is toward Browne Creek at this time, but are aware Browne Creek Trail itself has a few trees down across the wheelchair accessible section that needs to be cleared, although it is navigable by and large.