Glamorgan Peak


elevation: 2,738 m. height gain: 1,060 m.
area: Radium,BC map 82 K/9-10
2014-Sep-28


Via Welsh Lakes. Ref: Aaron Cameron and Matt Gunn's Hikes around Invermere & the Columbia River Valley.
Just before reaching the first, lower lake, a cairn indicates a faint trail that shortcuts to Aberystwyth Lake, the fourth of the Welsh Lakes. We aimed for the north-east end of the lake and started Glamorgan's ascent via its east ridge. We bypassed the north-east peak and other gendarmes on the southern aspect. We travelled below the ridge crest circumventing difficult terrain without losing too much height. The summit block offers nice moderate scrambling; route finding is the challenge on this scramble.

small bridge


Beginning of the trail.
Scramble: RT 10.0; 5.25 up. After a fantastic outing in the area last weekend, we decided to come back to enjoy more larches and try to ascend Glamorgan Peak. We didn't have high expectations; the mountain looks daunting and we weren't able to find any information other than a vague trip report on Bivouac that mentions 4th class scrambling. We hiked to Aberystwyth Lake once again. From the eastern lakeshore, we scrutinized our objective. Our plan was to ascend Glamorgan's east ridge, bypass the north-east summit, which appears to be the highest and traverse to the true summit at the opposite end of the summit ridge. We knew from pictures and previous trips that route finding would be key; we brought a short rope for the summit block, just in case. The east ridge is straightforward; as we neared the north-east summit, we started looking for a place to traverse towards the next gendarme. Our strategy was to crest in between each "gendarme", if possible, to check out the ridge proper before searching for a traverse on the south aspect. There's four sub peaks to negotiate in between the north-east summit and true summit; it turns out we had to contour each one of them on the south side, avoiding snow on the north aspect. We built big cairns along the way to facilitate backtracking. The scrambling isn't difficult, the challenge is finding the right route; that said, the summit block is steep and hands-on scrambling is required. I was very pleased to stand on this summit, I didn't think we would reach the top. Fab found the tiniest register ever; he broke a mini pencil we brought to fit in there but there was no blank paper for us to sign. We stayed at the top to enjoy the awesome day and spectacular view. Backtracking was fine, the cairns we built really helped. Back at the lake, we sat for another fine break among the beautiful yellow larches before returning to the truck. We're very thrilled about this outing, sometimes you can't be sure of finding a way until your nose is right up on it; it was worth investigating!
shortcut to aberystwyth lake

Shortcutting on a crude trail to Aberystwyth Lake.

beautiful larches

Hiking through beautiful larches.

glamorgan peak

Glamorgan Peak and its east ridge to the right.

ascending big blocks

Ascending big blocks.

aberystwyth lake

Aberystwyth Lake looks like an eye with the sun's reflection.

bypassing the north-east peak

Bypassing the slabby north-east peak.

looking back

Looking back at our traverse.

climbing traverse


Climbing traverse towards the ridgeline (center).


welsh lakes below


Three of the stunning Welsh Lakes.


near the ridgeline


Nearing the ridgeline.


circumventing gendarmes


Circumventing "gendarmes" on the southern aspect.


true summit


Glamorgan Peak's true summit.


moderate scramble


Moderate scrambling leads to the top.


good holds on the way


Big blocks grant great purchase along the way.


north-eastern view


Looking north-east, along the ascent ridge.


last bit


Last bit!


tiniest register


Tiniest summit register ever!


south-western view


View south-west towards North Star Peak and Gwendoline Mountain (right).


summit dance


Summit dance with Merioneth Peak at my elbow and Harlech Peak at my knee.


basking in the sun


Basking in the sun on warm rock, T-shirt weather in late september.


leaving the top


Leaving the top.


following carefully


Following carefully.


steep and blocky


Steep blocky terrain.


backtracking


Backtracking around a "gendarme".


following our cairns


About to hook left towards our cairns.


looking back


Looking back at a "gendarme" we circumvented, Fabrice is in the middle of the picture.


east ridge ahead


Almost back to the east ridge.


on the east ridge


On the east ridge with Donegal and Connemara Peaks.


aberystwyth lake


At Aberystwyth Lake.


another fine break


Another fine break before heading back.
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