Foxhound Peak (DG18) GR:846744

elevation: 2,723 m.
height gain: 1,050 m.
area: Parson,BC
map 82 N/3
2016-May-22


From Parson, turn on the Spillimacheen FSR and ignore all side roads. After 17 kilometers, continue straight at a fork; follow the main service road. At 55.7 kilometers, 863694, turn right and follow the high-clearance road for 4.2 kilometers to the trailhead, 828714. From the trailhead, head north-east and bushwhack towards a south-west facing rib situated climber's right of a prominent drainage, 831730; ascend the rib to the ridge proper. Continue along the ridge up a false summit, 839740. A couple of possibilities exist here; either follow the connecting ridge heading north-east towards the summit (most direct) or drop down the south-east ridge to about 842735 and descend into the bowl on the north side. **This is the way we used given that there was a cornice over the north-eastern connecting ridge. Once in the bowl, the saddle, 840741, is easily gained. Follow the ridge to the top. It is also possible to ascend/descend another rib, 837727, that connects the false summit's south-east ridge; locate the cutblock next to the access road before the trailhead, 832714.




favorite pass time

Saturday evening at the trailhead, drinking wine and writing.

rain gear on

The following morning, I'm all geared up for the wetness.
Scramble: RT 8.25; 5.25 up. Like Springer Peak, Foxhound Peak has recently been given a dog related name by Bivouac given that it's part of the Dogtooth Range. My objective for the weekend was Copperstain Mountain but with a forecast of 100% rain, I decided to downscale to plan B. Charles had been working long hours, he was keen to join me despite the dismal weather. He drove from Calgary to meet at the trailhead on saturday night. I packed and left after work. I was surprised to see snow on the service road; only a couple of kilometers away from the trailhead, I decided to park instead of risking getting stuck. There was fresh bear prints in the snow so I chose to spend the evening in the truck, it was raining anyway... By 10 PM, Charles rolled in; we exchanged greetings and retired for the night. The next morning it was raining heavily, I suited up with my rain gear. We hiked the road to the trailhead and bushwhacked through the soaked undergrowth towards our objective. Although hiking with rain gear is awkward, it kept me warm and dry; an appropriate choice for today. Firm snow patches in the forest were useful. As we progressed further up, snow coverage increased and rain turned to snow. Visibility was next to nil and soon we were plodding through shin-deep snow. Once on the ridge, we walked to the false summit; blizzard conditions made it feel like winter again. Because of a cornice, we never saw the connecting ridge that leads to the summit. We followed the wrong ridge until we noticed we were losing too much height. We made plans to correct our route; this involved dropping in a bowl and gaining the saddle on the connecting ridge. This option was a bit complex given the current conditions and lack of visibility. We dismissed backtracking to the false summit, we figured that negotiating the cornice and loaded steep ridge would also involve some challenge. I glissaded into the bowl, Charles followed and we proceeded blindly towards the saddle. When we were close enough, I was able to pick the safest way up to the saddle. This decision making was a good example of "calculated risks". With this behind us, we carried on to the top.  Just before the summit, we had to sidehill a steep exposed snow slope and scramble a short buttress; we were thrilled to finally step on the summit. We didn't stay long, it was cold and windy. We backtracked to the saddle and decided to forgo the connecting ridge to the false summit; from what we could see, it looked like the steep upper section of the connecting ridge would be indeed tricky...  Instead, we followed our steps back up the south-east ridge with the intention of beelining straight down to the cutblock near our vehicles. Once at treeline, we took a good break sheltered from the wind; I built another snowman for an American friend. We resumed an easy descent, reached the cutblock and arrived no more than 100 meters from the vehicles. Overall this trip was very satisfying, why waste a good rainy day!!!








walking to the trailhead

We parked before the old trailhead due to snow on the road.

at the traihead

At the trailhead, it's pouring...

bushwhacking

Bushwhacking towards our ascent ridge.

snow cover increases


Snow cover increases and visibility decreases as rain turns to snow.


shin-deep snow


Shin-deep fresh snow at treeline.


on the ridge


On the ridge.


rocky point


A rocky point precedes the false summit.


false summit


Leaving the false summit on the wrong ridge.


on the saddle


With a little extra effort, we made it on the saddle between the false summit and true summit.


summit ridge


On the summit ridge.


true summit


True summit ahead!


crossing a steep slope


Looking back as Charles finishes crossing a steep snow slope.


at the top


Flashing my great mountain wear...


just making sure


GPS reading just to make sure since we can't see anything!


ascent ridge


A glimpse at the summit ridge and saddle below.


heading back


Heading back down.


improved visibility


Visibility has improved slightly.


dipping in the bowl


Dipping back in the bowl.


backtracking up the ridge


Climbing back up to the false summit's south-east ridge.


down an adjacent rib


Booking it down another rib adjacent (and south-east) to the one we climbed.


treeline


Almost at treeline, it's still snowing.


another snowman


Taking a break sheltered in the trees; another snowman for John!


aiming for the cutblock


Working our way towards the cutblock.


in the cutblock


In the cutblock, yippee!
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