New Denver Glacier -
July 20, 2016
Forecast: Partly cloudy
Temperature: high 23C/75F
What will you need?
Kayak Rental from Valhalla Pure Beach Shop in New Denver, BC
Water and/or water filtration device
Rented kayak from Vahalla Pure Beach Shop in New Denver, BC
Start: @5AM - 45 minute kayak to Shark Creek Beach - Smooth water
Moored boat 5:45 - 6am
CAMP @ beach
Pit toilet with paper
3 places to camp with fire rings at the start
8km hike UP @ 6:10am
1st section about 3-4km - Beginner to moderate skillset
(Good hiking with a bit of windfall)
-Straight uphill hike through trees, moss, & several varieties of mushrooms.
-CAMPSITE near waterfall (I cannot recall if it is before or after the waterfall).
-Waterfall in the middle of the hike (@2-3 km). You will hear it. There is a fork in the trail. Going up right is towards the glacier and left is towards the waterfall. There was a tree in the middle of the left fork of the trail that had “WATERFALL” carved into it. Looking up at the fork there is a sign to the glacier that just has an arrow pointing right. The waterfall trail is a nice but SLICK side trail to take and not far. Go there on the way up because you won’t want to go on the way down.
-If you want to avoid the difficult parts of the trail this is a good turn around.
-Switchbacks after the waterfall in forested area.
-Possible standing water on the trail that is muddy but very passable.
-A bit of treefall along this section but not impassable.
2nd section about 2 km - Moderate to advanced skillset
-Eventually look to your left for beautiful views of the creek you have been following waterfalling & for beautiful views of the mountains with snow coming into view.
-Bushes start in muddy area with tree cover.
-The trail becomes only accessible for advanced hikers to lead.
-Bushes take over trail and you switch back up a steep hill section. There was tape in trees at this section but not a good trail. At this point it was A LOT of route finding and bushwhacking.
-LOTS of mosquitoes
NEEDS: More trail marking with tape and more traffic to beat down the overgrown sections.
3rd section about 1km Beginner to advanced skillset
-Alpine forested section
-At one point you will loose the trail completely due to windfall. We walked around the windfall section to the right with some tree hopping. As we did this we looked to the left continually to see where there was cut trees from windfall maintenance years before. Advanced trail finding.
-LOTS of mosquitoes
NEEDS: A new trail cut through the windfall with tape and chainsaws.
4th section about 1 km - 2 km - Beginner to moderate skillset
ALPINE MEADOW - BOULDER HOPPING
-Beautiful alpine meadow environment with views of the glacier, beautiful flowers, bushes, animals that squawk, & loads of mosquitoes.
-LOTS of mosquitoes
-There is a really nice campsite along the way. (Trail description from BC Parks says it is 1.8 km from the glacier).
-You will start to see cairns along this trail and they are fairly easy to follow but run out near the boulder hopping area. Once you get to the boulder hopping area you can can make your own way to the boulder.
-There was plenty of snow melt for us to get to the base of the glacier without an ice axe or crampons. The traverse/ridge of Iron Peak was accessible without an ice axe or crampons as well.
-It sprinkled at the glacier
NEEDS: Cairns connecting the base of the alpine meadow to the boulder hoping area.
Arrived at Glacier @11:45am
Left @ 12:25
Same adventure on the way down just follow instructions backwards.
Arrived to Kayak @ 4:25pm
Went for a dip.
Kayak across took about 1 hour and started at 5pm. Water was a little rougher then the morning but not bad.
**Locals say to watch for the black line with kayaking. This area gets a lot of wind whipping over the lake. From what I understand it causes a wave to go across the lake unexpectedly in a series of 7 caps. The locals insist to take it seriously and the lake should be kayaked sober and attentively.
FOOD & SLEEP!
An awesome hike that just needs traffic and maintenance.
BC Valhalla Provincial Park Website
BC Trail Report
Las Vegas based artist, high school art teacher, rock climber, cyclist, runner, yogi, traveler, & outdoor enthusiast. "Every moment is worth living. If I'm adventuring I'm dreaming of creating and if I'm creating I'm dreaming of adventures."