Lussier Peak GR:920488

elevation: 1,888 m. height gain: 835 m.
area: Canal Flats,BC map 82 J/4
2014-Mar-30


This is a winter route description, other approaches are possible.

From highway 93/95, drive south of Canal Flats and find the Whiteswan FSR on the east side. Follow the service road for 6.5 kilometers to Branch H (south side), 918546; park well off the busy road. We hiked the road for 2.2 kilometers leaving it at 920540 to head south, ascending a cutblock. We followed a skid road, due south, then entered some timber before reaching the landing we were aiming for, 921536. From there, we bushwhacked straight up to a highpoint, 922529, before dipping slightly and ascending to the summit plateau. Once at the northern end of the plateau, trek to the southern end where the treed summit is located; a GPS is useful to locate the true summit, 920488.

branch h

Parked on Whiteswan FSR, we head out on Branch H.

leaving the service road


Leaving the service road for a direct line of ascent.
Snowshoe trip: RT 8.75; 4.5 up. Late february and march have not seen many weekends, if any, with a stable snowpack; a persistent weak layer continues to plague the backcountry and people involvements are numerous. We've been avoiding big terrain altogether, focusing on lesser disregarded objectives. So far, the puny mountains (Steamboat, Jubilee and Lussier) have been worthwhile winter outings; I wouldn't really consider them in the summer and I can't say I would recommend anybody duplicate these trips... This one proved to be the toughest; with less than ideal conditions, it required a second attempt.
The first time we came, the snow on the road and clearings was firm but the ascent in the trees to the summit plateau was a ridiculous nightmare. We reached the plateau at 2:30 PM, we were gutted! With 4 kilometers remaining to reach the top, we decided to enjoy the sun and come back.
Charles joined us for this second try. We met at the trailhead and quickly got on the way. There was no overnight freeze, we punched in a little more than last weekend; it was especially bad in the clearings before our uptrack in the trees. Once on that track, the ascent was straightforward and relatively pleasant; all the postholing from our previous trip formed a bomber route up to the summit plateau. We reached the plateau almost 2 hours ahead of our first try, feeling fresh for the upcoming trek. The wind was howling and fat flakes started to come down hard. I squinted as I followed and couldn't help feeling that I was trudging on a post-apocalyptic landscape. The denuded plateau with its occasional stand of trees combined with the weather and uniform grey sky sure reinforced that. After skirting a false summit and taking a GPS reading, we dipped down and started climbing the last stretch. The trees were big and nicely spaced, it was snowing even harder but we were kinda sheltered. We joined Charles on the highpoint indicated on his GPS and quickly retreated in the big timber for a break. It wasn't that cold but we were getting damp from the snow, we stayed long enough to grab a bite. When we left, I stood on another highpoint indicated by Fab's GPS, just in case! While returning, the sun tried breaking through on and off. Before entering the forest for the descent, we were lucky to have some sun for another nice break.

steep climbing

Steep climbing in the trees.

glad we have an uptrack

The snowpack is unsupportive but we have our uptrack from last week!

on a highpoint


On a highpoint, which precedes the last 100 meter jaunt to the plateau.


reaching the plateau


Starting on the plateau.


post apocalyptic


This resembles a post-apocalyptic landscape.


good snowshoeing


Snowshoeing conditions are decent on the plateau.


false summit


It's snowing hard and it's windy as we skirt a false summit.


heading to the summit


Heading towards the true summit.


looking back


Looking back.


nice travelling


Travelling through nicely spaced timber.


at the top


At the top!


break time


Taking a break, sheltered from the wind but not from the snow!


another highpoint


Another highpoint 100 meters away.


view north


View north over the plateau...


steady snowfall


Our tracks are getting covered by steady snowfall.


blue sky appears


Blue sky appears.


more blue sky


The sky finally breaks up.


more apocalyps


This eerie scene returns as we near the northern end of the plateau.


break in the sun


Just before our descent, the sun came out!
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