Golden Ears Overnight
16:30 Hiking time ~ 25km ~ 1950m Cumulative elevation
We started from the West Canyon parking because we had originally planned to do the summit and camp and then come down via Edge Peak, Alouette and Evans Peak. With the installation of the new Gold Creek river crossing the route from the East Canyon Parking lot get you to Alder Flats faster now.
We started out under overcast sky and it appeared by the time we reached the Alder Flats look out we would be ascending into clouds. But by the time we reach Panorama Ridge, however the clouds had blown away and the views were spectacular. But by the time we reached the hut, the clouds had rolled in again so there wasn’t a view from the summit.
After we came down from the peak we headed towards Edge Peak to find a place to spend the night. As it was getting later in the day and with increasing cloud density we didn’t travel too far however. Although the trail is discernible and I had a GPS track to follow it isn’t flagged and in the diminishing light we picked the best available sheltered spot to set up the tent… A heather bed… which should never be mistaken for a feather bed.
The following morning the cloud density was even thicker and it was very damp, so after much deliberation we decided it was more prudent to head back the way we came rather than trying to find an uncertain path. Even then the cloud was so thick we often found ourselves missing the clearly marked route from the hut to the end of the ridge.
The Route is generally well marked and there was still lots of clear water flowing before Alder Flats but the next water isn’t available until you reach the Hut.
A lot of people doing this peak these days. I’m not sure why some people think playing their music for everyone to hear, while climbing a mountain is a good thing... but evidently they like being the the self appointed DJ for the mountain. Therefore I found I was constantly adjusting our pace to either stay ahead or well behind them.
Some rough numbers:
Alder Flats: 2.0hrs ~ 6.0km ~ 360m
Rest Stop before stairs: 3.0hrs ~ 8.0km ~ 670m
Hut: 6.0hrs ~ 11.0km ~ 1350m
Summit: 7.5hrs ~ 12.0km ~ 1726m
Junction (to Evans): 9.0hrs ~ 12.75 ~ (1500m elev)
Bivouac: 9.5hrs ~ 13.13km ~ 1755m