Caribou Peak

elevation: 2,585 m. height gain: 915 m.
area: Parson,BC map 82 N/3

Drive to Parson on highway 95 and continue west on Parson River Crossing which becomes Crestbrook Road. At Kilometer 17, the main road switchbacks and heads down; go north-west on the Spillimacheen River North Fork FSR. Drive past the McMurdo FSR turn off, 942643 (Km46) and follow the main service road until it crosses the Spillimacheen River, 848694 (Km58). Drive past the Baird Lake turn off on the right; 1.5 kilometer from the bridge, the main road heads west, 855683, continue straight (south-east) towards Caribou Creek. The service road skirts the west side of the creek; don't cross the bridge at 858666. Alders crowd the road in places but the road surface is good; we parked at a road widening, 852654, about 400 meters below our targeted cutblock. We hiked straight up, sometimes along a creek, to the cutblock. A road intersects the lower part of the clearing; we followed it to a landing at the south end, 846655. We ascended the cutblock for a short distance and veered left in a north-westerly direction; we climbed pleasant terrain along the north side of a creek. This creek leads into the draw, staying on the north side of the drainage avoids rockbands. At a tarn, we climbed scree slopes to Caribou's north-east ridge; some easy scrambling is required to reach the summit.

Camping at Loon Lake, the dogs love it and so do we!

retreiving the ball

Fab retreives Rupert's ball with a tent pole.
Scrambling: 8.5; 3.5 up. This Canada Day Weekend we decided to take our doggies camping and hiking; since I'm the planner of such events, I incorporated a summit! It's always a treat to be able to bring the dogs along and share our passion with them; I also get the opportunity to show them off to you fellow scramblers. We camped at Loon Lake, it's our newly discovered favorite spot; we had the west side of the lake all to ourselves, including the dock. We arrived early afternoon and took advantage of the lake. It was excellent quality time spent with the pack. We had a fire going and roasted some wieners before retiring for the night.

The following day, we woke, made a fire and packed up casually; at 7 AM, we left for the trailhead. After over an hour drive, we reached our starting point; the dogs were ready to go! The terrain isn't choked by deadfall and undergrowth, we followed a minor drainage to our targeted cutblock. We got to the cutblock quickly; once on the intersecting road, we walked to the landing before continuing our ascent. Hiking the tidy clearing was pleasant but we had to leave it behind to veer towards the proper drainage. We skirted a creek the whole way up; even with snowpatches, the terrain provides easy travel. It was fantastic to see the dogs this stimulated, they love new places; a bonus is the endless source of water along the way. We reached treeline and hiked into the draw on sun-cupped snow. We took a break on a bare area. We couldn't linger for too long, we had a moderately steep snow slope to climb. The snow was good but as we climbed, the shallower snow in the gullies was becoming isothermal. We aimed for ground and reached the north-east ridge safely. From there, we leashed up the hounds. The easy scrambling was more challenging with dogs on leash; we took our time to lead our furry partners along the summit ridge, I can't say I would recommend this... After the exciting ridge walk, we finally stepped on the summit. We set up the dogs on their fleeces, gave them water and kibble; still on leash, they just settled into nappy time. Fab and I soaked in the grandiose view of all the glaciated mountains around, this viewpoint is part of the Glacier National Park boundary. We enjoyed the moment, staying at the top well over an hour. When the dogs started to activate, we started descending. Following the ridge walk, we made our way down the gully we ascended while being careful not to allow the dogs on the isothermal steep snow. Out of the gully, we went back to the snow slope for a short glissade. Our return was pleasant and the hounds managed to make it back to the truck without mishap; we couldn't have asked for anything better, it was a superb weekend!

daisy roaming

Daisy roaming near the dock.

lincoln and rupert

Studdly Lincoln and muddy Rupert.

the boys

The boys again.

the next day

At the start of our ascent to Caribou Peak the next day.

water along the way

Water along the way.


Reaching the road that intersects the bottom of the large cutblock.

route from the cutblock

We hiked in the cutblock a short distance; we veered left and followed a creek.

pleasant hiking

Very pleasant hiking; the dogs are cool and hydrated.

along the creek

Still trekking along the creek, nearing the upper draw.

our objective

Our objective ahead.

north side of the draw

Staying on the north side of the draw avoids some rockbands.

break time

Doggies on leash, time for a break and some kibble.

up the bowl

Doggies leading the way in the bowl.

frozen lake

A small frozen lake below.

good conditions

Good conditions and not too steep.

choosing a gully

Choosing the gully just left of Fabrice.

near the ridge crest

Approaching the ridge crest.

rock feature

Although the rock feature appears to be the summit cairn, the top is actually over the cornice.

summit ridge

Easy scrambling along the summit ridge.

almost there

Nearing the top.

looking back

Looking back.

at the top

At the massive cairn, which also indicates the Glacier National Park boundary.

summit picture

Self-timed picture.

glaciated mountains

Surrounded by impressive glaciated mountains.

nap time

Well-deserved nap after more kibbles!

time to leave

Time to leave.

blocky ridge

The ridge is blocky.

lincoln perching

Lincoln likes to be perched.

some scrambling

Handing Daisy to Fab so I can come down this bit safely.

dogs on leash

Dogs on leash to negotiate the whole summit ridge.

last ridge section

Last ridge section before we descend.

dog management

Sending one dog at a time to prevent undesired roaming on the very soft snow.


Glissading the snow slope.


The hounds are great at backtracking.


Back on the road in the cutblock.

back at the truck

Finally at the truck, yippee!

caribou peak

Caribou Peak from Spillimacheen FSR.
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